Thursday 23 December 2021

Aussie Baby Animals

Aussie Baby Animals by Julia Murray (Harper Collins Children’s Books) Board Book RRP $9.99 ISBN 978 1 460761205

Reviewed by Karen Hendriks

This adorable board book is black and white and explores seven Australian animals and their babies on each page turn.

Julia Murray has created a board book that is simply stunning, and it is perfect for engaging babies developing eyesight because new bubs see the world differently. It strengthens a baby’s cognitive abilities and encourages the development of motor skills. This is a wonderful book to bond with a baby and to start a lifelong love of books. The text adorably uses repetitive word patterns and a question on each spread. In you hop, little baby. Can I kiss your soft, wee feet? Kiss, kiss, kiss. The gentle text reads aloud beautifully and creates a warm, cosy togetherness for a parent and baby. It encourages interaction and I can see many parents kissing, pecking, nuzzling, rubbing, tickling, stroking, brushing and finally cuddling, snuggling, and hugging their babies. 

The soft round drawings of the animals and babies are not only endearing but engaging. The striking backgrounds on each spread are either white or black and really make the characters stand out. The text compliments the illustrations as it contrasts with the background on each spread. The detail on the animals with patterning is striking and a celebration of each animal and its uniqueness. Each spread is friendly and uniquely Australian. The layout of each spread is well balanced.

Aussie Baby Animals, a board book, is perfect for 0-2years. I can see this book on many nursery bookshelves or in a baby bag or beside a car seat. Easy to read and use this book is not only fun but educational. Its release date of 1 December will make it a great Christmas gift or for all year round for any new bubs.

Julie Murray is an illustrator and designer living in Tamaki Makaurau, Acearoa (Auckland, New Zealand). Her illustrations have been applied to books, packaging, clothing, and advertising for Harper Collins and other clients.

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