We are huge book fans in our house and have regular story times with the girls. Books are also always firmly on every birthday or Christmas list. We have all the regulars like the whole Julia Donaldson collection, good old Janet and Alan Ahlberg and copious other story books. However, it is the fun graphical and interactive books that really capture the girls attention.

I love hunting out a different book from independent stores that lead to hours of imaginative fun. Perhaps not always the most calming for bedtime but oh well. I am also a huge fan of beautiful illustrations, and appreciate a beautifully designed book as much as a good story.

So today I thought I would share a few of our current favourites. These have been enjoyed by the girls at different ages and they still continue to love them to this day. I also think a book makes the perfect gift and keepsake.


The bright and fun illustrations in this book by Ketchup On Everything are some of my favourites. We also have the large ABC print in Alice’s room and she has adored going through this book and learning all her letters. It’s super colourful and it really has helped with letter recognition as Alice is able to look at the pictures and associate them with the letters.

The Odd One Out

I bought this gorgeous book for Alice’s fourth birthday and it has been read on repeat ever since. Each page is filled with beautiful animal illustrations along with a little rhyme telling you what to look out for. The child has to hunt out the animal that is the odd one out so for example, a turtle hiding in it’s shell or a rhino sitting down. The girls adore it and even though they now know exactly where the animal is it doesn’t seem to have taken away from the fun at all. I will most definitely be adding to her collection with some of the other titles this Christmas.

The Animalium

This is the perfect compendium for all animal lovers. I’m not entirely sure if it’s a kids book but it’s like a mini museum in the pages and has been a great buy. The illustrations are beautiful and you can while away hours talking about all the animals and birds contained within it. It has been brilliant for helping learn about all the different creatures and also looks pretty nifty on our book shelves!

Story Box: Create Your Own Fairytale

Edd chose this for the girls and at first I was sceptical but my god they love it. Mind you, who wouldn’t love a book that contains a giant pink rabbit, gnomes and a princess?! I say book very loosely as this is in fact a jigsaw puzzle which allows you to create your own story and tell it together at the end. You need a fair bit of floor space and we tend to do this at the weekends when story times can take a bit longer but the girls have so much fun. Each time the story ends up different and there are so many combinations. It’s a truly wonderful gift for little ones who have a vivid imagination.

Remarkable Animals

Edd chose this book by Tony Meeuwissen for the girls and it is unbelievably clever. It’s a simple flip book that allows you to mix and match pictures but as you create each new wondrous animal the name and description changes as well. You can make up all sorts of silly animals and the illustrations are beautiful with such cleverly written text. Although younger children might not understand the words they will certainly love the pictures.

Game In The Dark

We adore all the books by Herve Tullet as they are ridiculously fun and imaginative. This one is a great one for encouraging little ones to tell their own stories and the glow in the dark pictures are amazing! You simply need to expose the pages to a bit of light then turn out all the lights and watch them come alive as you go on a space adventure past planets and the moon. The girls absolutely adore it and now they are older they are able to start making up their own stories which are magical to hear.

Story Path

This is my latest purchase and I’m already so excited to give it to Alice for Christmas. I spied it in a little shop in Totnes whilst on holiday and quickly made a purchase. The book by Kate Baker and Madelena Matoso is filled with bright illustrations and you make up the story as you go along depending on what path you take. I know Alice will love choosing the different paths and following it through the book. You are meant to encourage them to talk about what direction they have chosen and what they have seen along the way so it’s perfect for getting them involved and excited about their story. Apparently there are over 3 billion story combinations so that should keep us busy!
Please do share your own favourite illustrative books below. I always love adding to our collection.