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Beep! Beep! is another great 'Baby Touch' book published by Ladybird and currently available in The Works for £3.99. (It is in the same series as Tickly Tiger that I recently reviewed). Measuring 26cm by 26cm this book, in terms of its size, is for Baby CrazyEgg akin to reading a broadsheet newspaper. Since the pages are cardboard, however she cannot fold or scrunch them in order to turn the pages, but instead must lift her head upwards, and lean back in order to view the next page. In this manner the book provides her with a full arm, shoulder and upper body workout.
It is clear though that Ladybird have thought about Baby trying to turn the pages. The focus of the book is transport. Each page has a tab in the shape of a vehicle: a bus; a car; a fire engine; a digger; a helicopter. These stick out at different points, at first along the top and then later down the side of the pages. This means that Baby CrazyEgg can get a handle on each page when she is ready to turn, physically even if not conceptually.
As a 'Baby Touch' book, the main selling point of this book is that it contains a variety of textures to touch and feel. There are nine textures in total, and a couple are repeated, so in this ten page book there is at least one different texture to feel on each page. This is far more than many of the cheaper 'touch and feel' books. Textures here include: corrugated rubber and card; rough paper; squashy plastic; smooth fabric; squashy, shiny fabric and a rough fabric. The corrugated textures are particularly good as they make a sound if you run your nail over them, and of course Baby can have a go too.
What I like about the book is its bright colours and the range of transport depicted. You get some pages that have just one vehicle shown, and then some which have up to six. Each vehicle is set against a distinct boldly coloured background, so it is clear that there are several things to focus on within the one page. Each vehicle is clearly labelled, and in some cases there is direction given as to the noise each should make. We have, for example, a scooter, a caravan, a helicopter, an ambulance, a crane, an airship, a flying saucer and a hot air balloon. The suggested sound for the helicopter is 'Chocka! Chocka!' which seems pretty reasonable.
The flying saucer is in some ways an odd inclusion. It is flown by a green, pointy-eared alien. It is possible that this will provoke discussion between myself and Baby in future years. However, it should be noted that some of the other vehicles are operated by animals- including Tickly Tiger- so it is possible that the alien will seem pretty run of the mill.
What does Baby CrazyEgg like about the book? Easy: purple, sparkly hot air balloon. LOVES that. Folds herself right over and kisses it. Same with the mirrors in the submarine, although in that case she is in fact kissing herself. This is one of the books she will crawl the length of a room for, and that is the real test of a book's success at the present time.
There is no story within this book, just the names of the vehicles and a few instructions such as 'Follow the crane's long arm with your finger', highlighting one of the harder-to-see textures. For this reason, it is not quite as popular in the CrazyEgg household as Tickly Tiger, but nevertheless, still worthy of five stars I feel.