|First successful book! our version|
doesn't have the touchy-feely stuff
|The best of the cot books|
|You can't be too young for Judith Kerr|
On the whole, board-book prequels tend to be of the Peppa Pig &co merchandising category. I'd be wary of buying into something quite so commercial, but I guess if the baby has an older sibling who has Gruffalo and Peppa stuff around it makes sense. Here's a Thomas the Tank Engine title that introduces the engines that will feature in the child's coming Thomas TE experiences.
I think I might get the Moomin introductions to colours and numbers, though. Fostering an interest in moomins is, like fostering a liking for vegetables, a good investment in future health.
Here's the surprise discovery: board books for the children of literary parents. Now, it's one thing to introduce your baby to Peppa and Mog, protagonists of stories they can engage with pretty soon.
|More for the grown-ups than the babies|
But how about Pride and Prejudice? Anna Karenina? Moby Dick? Pride and Prejudice turns out to be a counting book (four stately houses, etc). Not a fan: how to build an interest in the trappings of capitalism and elitism.
|Might well buy this one|
Moby Dick I rather liked. It calls itself an 'ocean primer' and introduces ideas such as whale and anchor. I don't recall there being a harpoon page, fortunately.
|Seriously? Clothes to die for?|
Anna Karenina? Wow. Adultery and suicide for the under-twos. But it's massively disappointing. Look closely. It's the Anna Karenina fashion primer. Can you identify Anna's earring? Where is her hat? FFS. Does her handbag hold a one-way train ticket...?
I can understand that Pride and Prejudice and Moby Dick might appeal to parents who like those novels. It's a bit far-fetched to suggest that they will lead young readers to those titles 14 years later, but if they did there would have been no serious misrepresentation. But if you turned to Anna Karenina expecting fashion to be a big part of it, you'd be in for a shock. (I do remember some referenc to Kitty's striped silk dress; but I don't think fashion was a theme, as such.)
I'm going back to town to look for more boards books - any favourites to suggest? Without a narrative, for now.
My lovely editor at Templar saw this post and sent a copy of this amazing book called Art for Baby. The baby loves it, I love it. If you know a baby, buy it! It has simplified black-and-white versions of art by famous artists. The Bridget Riley page is a hit - we're taking her to the Fitzwilliam to see somem real BR.