We were fortunate last year to be sent a big box of books from Child’s Play International, many of which I included in Great Gifts for Under Fives and Gifts for Curious Children. One of the books I haven’t yet reviewed was Little Red Riding Hood from Child’s Play’s Flip-Up Fairy Tales range, but we bought five more from the range based on how popular it was!
Flip-Up Fairy Tales are a series of fairy tales written for toddlers and pre-schoolers. What makes them an instant hit is the fact they have at least one flap to lift on every spread. Although written to be read from the youngest age, my four year old and almost-seven year old love these. Mighty-Girl (6) can read the text easily, and will read the stories to her little sister. Destructo-Girl (4) memorises the stories to join in, and they both love the flaps. Who doesn’t love flaps to lift?!
The flaps in these stories are very clever, the pictures fit seamlessly and will show things like a hungry wolf on top, and a fainted wolf under; or someone walking in the near distance on top, and further away under; or a naked emperor and the clothes in his imagination; or something hidden; or… Well, they’re just exciting and interesting and pull everyone into the story.
As you’d expect from Child’s Play, the characters are represented by a range of genders and ethnicities. The stories have been rewritten for a young audience and the prince and princess are far more likely to be friends than to get married. The rewrites are quite funny – the wolf faints when he sees the axe in Little Red Riding Hood, and the Beast just needs a bath! Beauty’s response to the Beast’s request for marriage is perfect: “Of course not, silly! I hardly know you!”
There are so many different tales to choose from, there is something for everyone. All six of the ones we have are enjoyed regularly. They are quite text heavy compared to some picture books, but don’t feel long to read (although may take a while to get through because of all the flap lifting, but that’s just fun!) They are excellent for engaging small children and a great choice for increasing vocabulary for toddlers (lots of “what’s that?” opportunities.)
I wish we’d discovered them earlier, I probably would have collected a lot more. They are a little on the younger end for my two but are still very much enjoyed so each book could give many years of enjoyment, giving excellent value for money. Highly recommended for the under-fives, a selection would make a lovely new baby gift.