As Christmas approaches and we wonder what we can buy for the wonderful small people in our lives, I have chosen five amazing books that we have read this year as  a family and will continue to read again and again next year. My son is almost five now, and can follow longer story lines such as the one in The Enormous Crocodile, as well as being able to comprehend the social issues in Malala/Iqbal. The rest I would recommend for any age, and I will tell a little about each now. They are in no particular order of preference.

Malala/Iqbal, by Jeanette Walter is a book about two brave children from Pakistan. The stories themselves do not flow off my tongue as easily as other books but the publication has led to many a discussion about issues surrounding their stories. I have now read Malala’s book for grown-ups and found it to be a fascinating read. We also watched YouTube videos about her and my son has been asking lots of questions.

Thomas and Friends King of the Railway is a book that all Thomas fans will enjoy. Not only does it complement the film perfectly with train-based information but there is a free augmented reality app that accompanies the book that I found as magical as my son did.

Zog, by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler is just a brilliant read. It’s funny, touching and one of those books that I don’t think I will ever tire of. It ends in harmony between dragons and dragon-slayer, and carries a message that escape from any expected way of life is possible, and that dreams can be followed.

Hairy Maclary by Lynley Dodd is actually five stories in one book, so I cheated a little here. We love Hairy Maclary and his canine pals, as well as the cats and other creatures that feature in the stories. The tales trip off the tongue like a song, from one page to the next and carry the reader through the short and light-hearted tales with delight.

The Enormous Crocodile by Roald Dahl has a bit of a dark side, with the crocodile plotting to trap and consume small children but I love to get in character as the devious yet slightly narcissistic wide-mouthed reptile with his secret plans and clever tricks. It’s a longer book, but so easy to read and Roald Dahl and Quentin Blake really do have an amazing book-writing partnership that appeals to readers of all ages.


Written by our regular contributor Catherine.

Website: http://www.mummylion.co.uk
Twitter: @mummylion

All views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of Room To Grow.

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