Another school year is soon coming to an end and I’ve gathered together some really terrific and unusual books that will be great for gifts and/or summer. These books (unless otherwise noted) are great for all ages.
I’ll begin with pop-out books. Matthey Reinhart and Robert Sabuda are two of the most renowned paper engineers in the pop-out book business and they have proven this once again in their newest publication. Dragons & Monsters is their newest incredible pop-up book that is full of amazing monsters that jump out in the most creative ways. There is a dragon that explodes into twice the size of the book and the Abominable Snowman will astonish you!
This duo (who often work together) has another pop-up, Gods & Heroes, that covers the major areas of mythical gods from China, Egypt, Greece and Norway. As in all of their books, even the small corners on each page have multiple pages that also pop-out. If you could only own one pop-up book, any from these two engineers are a must!
Robots, by Andy Parker, is a pop-up book that demonstrates what the robot will look like once it’s constructed. There are also some great scientific applications to learn as you build four different robots. There are also press-out pieces to go onto the finished products.
Now for some really cool packaged and enlarged books. Alienology, by Allen Grey, is a field guide to galaxies far away as well as a study of aliens here. There are many lift-the-flaps, charts, a mirror, and much more in this scrapbook style book – along with puzzles to solve.
My Little Pink Princess Purse, by Stephen T. Johnson, is an interactive storybook with lift-up tabs, scratch-and-sniff perfumes, pull-out jewelry and tiara and much more. This book is great fun that is geared for ages four to eight.
Fantasy: An Artist’s Realm, by Ben Boos, is full of the most extraordinary magic and abundant detail depicting tools, dwellings and elves and much more. This gorgeous book opens with a double page spread that opens to twice the size showcasing a colorful realm. This book is sure to add much more to your imagination.
Here are two books that teachers will love. Create a Story Kit: Legends of the Sea and Legends of the Sea, by John & Caitlin Matthews, are actually story cards that have colorful pictures that go along with the subject and on the back of each card is a list of suggestions to draw out your imagination and ignite creative storytelling.
Klutz publishers have many new books that beg to be enjoyed. Each of Klutz’s book packages show an item on the front of the book and then the book showcases how to build, play or create the featured item. I will list a few of these many new books. By the way, these types of books encourage children to learn how to follow directions in order to build their desired structure.
Friendship Pixies, by Karen Phillips, has all of the items needed to make little dolls.
The Marvelous Book of Magical Horses, by Eva Steele-Saccio, has 6 paper ponies and 2 fairies as well as punch-out items to create a haven for horses.
The Klutz Guide to the Galaxy, by Pat Murphy, delves into space with the help of locating parts of the moon and understanding meteors. There are many scientific items to assemble related to outer space.
The Solar Car Book will entice future mechanical engineers as you build an incredible car powered by the sun.
Safety Pin Bracelets, by Kaitlyn Nichols, has directions with making your own creative bracelets with all of the designs and materials provided.
The Klutz Book of Animation: Make Your Own Stop Motion Movies, by John Cassidy and Nicholas Berger, allows you to create your own animated videos with modeling clay, along with easy instructions of how to make stop-motion videos.
Chalk the Block: Add Humor to the Neighborhood, by Michael Sherman, includes four large pieces of chalk and a book full of fun and hilarious and interesting drawings that are easy to make.
And here is my all-time favorite of this entire review – The Klutz Book of Inventions, by John Cassidy and Brendan Boyle. This hilarious book of the most inventive inventions would be the perfect book to put on display in your house. This book celebrates innovations by using common household items or needs and creating something completely different and possibly useful. The book includes reversible shoes and an inflatable hydrant to save your parking spot. Chances are this book will be looked at again and again!