Five Offbeat Kids Books to Gift (or Keep!)

Struggle to find a book that they won’t already have? We put Jenny Thomas, founder of design-led kids bookstore Smallprint, on the spot and asked her to choose five favourites from her collection that make perfect presents. No gift receipt required.

We recently caught up with Jenny to find out all about her family-run bookstore, Smallprint (read the full interview here) but, in the meantime, here are her five top picks from the collection, all of which make perfect gifts for children aged 2+ (and which you’ll want for your own kids’ bookshelves too).

As if you need any further incentive to shop: Mr Fox readers get an exclusive 10% off Smallprint until 31 January 2015. Just use code MRFOX10 at checkout.

Alice Melvin Grandma's House

Grandma’s House by Alice Melvin

The long-awaited new book from best-selling illustrator and designer Alice Melvin features highly detailed illustrations that will absorb readers of all ages. Cut-out windows and gate folds transform the book into a house to be explored.  Grandma’s House is a story about a little girl who often visits her grandmother’s house where everything is different, but always the same.

Children will love exploring the rooms in Grandma’s House, peering through its cutout pages from one room to the next and journeying high up into the fold-out attic in search of Grandma. Alice Melvin is a highly acclaimed artist and designer whose other works have earned her the Booktrust Best New Illustrators Award.

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Kay Vincent Animal Alphabet

Animal Alphabet by Kay Vincent

What better way for a child to learn their ABCs than through the use of bright and appealing illustrations combined with amusing alliteration! In this beautifully presented hard back book each letter of the alphabet is represented by an animal beginning with the same letter and a descriptive word also beginning with the same letter which is tied into the illustration, for example: A – acrobatic ant, E – eating elephant, L – leaping lion, R – rodeo rabbit.

The illustrations have a distinctive vintage look and are printed on a heavy wood-free stock. The book also comes with a dust jacket printed full colour on both sides, the reverse of the jacket can also be used as a wall poster.

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Mr Horizontal and Miss Vertical by Noemie Revah and Olympia Zagnoli

This story was inspired by a René Maltête photograph in which a father wears horizontal stripes, a mother vertical stripes, and their child sports a checkered shirt. This boldly graphic concept book is built around lines and their direction and gives a fun insight into shape and movement. With a light-hearted narrative and compelling illustrations this is a perfect accompaniment to bedtime and a great addition to the bookshelf.

Mister Horizontal 4

Christopher Coor Deep in the Woods
Deep in the Woods by Christopher Corr

Deep in the woods is a little wooden house, with nine neat windows and a red front door. When a little mouse decides it will make the perfect home, so do the other animals in the wood – including a great big bear! But will the bear be able to put everything right when their home comes tumbling down? Find out in this beautifully illustrated retelling of a classic Russian folk tale. Exceptionally well illustrated and bursting with colour and life, this is set to be a classic for any child.

Deep in the Woods book

Dinoblock Book
Dinoblock by Christopher Franceschelli

Following in the footsteps of the successful alphabetic and numeric phenomena Alphablock and Countablock, Dinoblock pages cut into the shape of dinosaurs. Readers will be introduced to 24 different kinds of dinosaurs via die-cuts of their unique silhouettes and illustrated factual environments, creating a sort of peek-through guessing game around the dinosaur form itself.

As children interact with the pages, they will immerse themselves not only in the interesting facts about each dinosaur and its environment, but also in the physicality of each dinosaur’s shape. Illustrated by hip British design team Peskimo, this fresh take on dinosaurs encourages readers to interact with these prehistoric favourites in a whole new way.

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See more at www.smallprint-online.comMr Fox readers get an exclusive 10% off until 31 January 2015. Just use code MRFOX10 at checkout.