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Arlo The Lion Who Couldn't Sleep

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But the ragtag bunch of misfits trying to get a lift down to the beach with a surfer might be familiar, from the red-caped girl escaping a wolf to the retired superhero pulling a wheelie case. Hitchhikers are a rare breed nowadays so the context for The Ride (Tate) by Brazilian author-illustrator Guilherme Karsten could need some explaining to kids. As he runs around, everything and everyone he encounters is labelled in both English and French, for this is a story with a difference: it’s bilingual to help young children learn French. And the book feels solid enough to survive sun-cream splats and soggy tent corners if you take it away with you.

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has created a vibrant Richard Scarry-esque world full of chatty animals, where, alongside vocab, there are phrases to learn (including true essentials such as: Il pleut! The Sunday Times named Norris, The Bear Who Shared a 100 Children’s Modern Classic of the past decade. Rayner’s soothing language effectively sets the stage for addressing a frequent childhood problem… The lullaby portion of the story appears in wavy lines, emphasizing its lyric qualities. Taking Time by Jo Loring-Fisher (7 September) is a poem witnessing children all over the world as they interact with nature – listening to the sea in a shell, watching a spider weave its home.Perfect for toddlers and reluctant sleepers, this gentle and humorous bedtime story has a calming message of mindfulness and centeredness that’s beautifully complemented by gorgeous watercolor, acrylic ink, and pencil art from award-winning author-illustrator Catherine Rayner. While some of the rhyming doesn’t trip off the tongue as easily as you’d like, this book is such a riot – full of eye-popping pictures the colour of ketchup and hazy sunshine – that it’s a joy to be along for the ride. One of Lantana’s gems this season was planned long before Covid-19 but feels like a perfect response to the anxiety experienced by many children because of lockdown and the change in their routine.

Arlo the Lion Who Couldn’t Sleep – Peachtree Publishing Arlo the Lion Who Couldn’t Sleep – Peachtree Publishing

A beautiful, meditative bedtime book about a lion who can’t sleep—until a friend offers sage advice. Now Rocket is jetting off to a tropical island with her family to visit Grammy and Grampy in Clean Up! Award winning author and illustrator Catherine Rayner tells us the story of Arlo, the lion who couldn't sleep. Pace, repetition and the conjuring of a cosy, comforting world are key, as classics such as Margaret Wise Brown’s Goodnight Moon perfectly demonstrate.

Happily, Nathan Bryon and Dapo Adeola are two such young talents who are getting the attention they deserve. Catherine also illustrates greeting cards and exhibits her work in galleries and her work is held in collections and archives worldwide. Bryon’s text and Adeola’s pictures work well together to capture the fizzing energy of young children and, as Rocket sets about sorting the plastic pollution she encounters on Grampy’s beach, there’s also a positive environmental message. But if this were an end-of-term report, it would have to say “must try harder”, judging by conversations emerging from this summer’s Black Lives Matter protests. It does feel like efforts are being made in the children’s publishing world to be more diverse, with a small but notable increase of late in new picture books starring BAME characters ( Julian Is a Mermaid, The Girls, Billy and the Beast…).

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