Posted in Gifted, product review, reading

Granny Franny’s Big Red Bus Review

Granny Franny’s Big Red Bus is the first children’s story written by TV producer Sonia Beldom – who in 2018 fulfilled her life long dream of qualifying as a bus driver! Sonia decided to write this book to raise funds for bus-related charities during COVID-19 and we’ve been given a copy to read and share our thoughts on.

Synopsis:

Granny Franny is always surprising her grandchildren with sensational stories and surprise days out. One day she decides to do something super special for their birthday. She buys a big red bus to take them on a magical tour of London; what she’s forgotten is that she can’t actually drive a bus. Then she meets Thinkerbell, the talking bus bell and everything changes.


First of all, as always, Ellie got very excited when she realised she had a new book to read. She looked at the front cover and read the words “big red bus” which was made her even more excited to read it together. We talked about what she thought Granny Franny might be doing and decided she was going on holiday.

Ellie is very intrigued by rhyming words at the minute and is always trying to rhyme words when she is mumbling to herself (her favourite being “wee wee, pee pee, tee pee”) so we talked a lot about the different rhyming words in the book and she tried to spot them herself.

While reading I noticed the illustrations are big and colourful – perfect for young children. Granny Franny is aimed at children aged 3-7 but could be shared to younger children and primary aged children too.

I thought the book was great, there was a clear message of love between Granny Franny and her grandchildren, a sense of family and compassion. There were so many talking points throughout too such as the other vehicles helping Thinkerbell.

Ellie’s Thoughts:

I asked Ellie what she liked the most about Granny Franny’s Big Red Bus and her reply was:

Thinkerbell is funny and has a silly voice and does lots of rhyming words. I liked the bus getting stuck in the sticky mud and the fire man coming to save the day.

Disclosure: I was gifted a copy of Granny Franny’s Big Red Bus in exchange for an honest review. All views, opinions and images are my own

Posted in Gifted, product review

Books2Door – Review

Does anyone else’s child love stories? Whenever we are out and she sees a book she has to have one and Mummy can’t say no because I love that she loves books but WOW! Aren’t they expensive!
I’m so glad to introduce Books2Door who offer a fantastic range of babies, children and young adult books in one place! We recently received our collaboration book order and I couldn’t wait to share with you what we got!

As you probably know Ellie is an amazing storyteller, she is dramatic and full of expression; this has developed through her love of stories. I have been trying to move her on when we are reading together and pointing out simple CVC words to sound out and blend. She’s been trying really hard with this during lockdown so I knew I wanted books that would help her develop her reading so decided to look in the 5-7 years age range.

Ten Little Bookworms – £1.00



Ellie loves the “ten little” stories and we have used them to teach her subtraction and number skills too. When i saw this little book I knew she’d love it. It’s from the 2019 World Book Day range so isn’t a long story, perfect for filling time between activities or routine. This is the story of ten little borkworms and page by page one has gone astray. Ellie loved the illustrations and remembering how many bookworms would be left.

Where’s The Unicorn: a Magical Search and Find book – £4.49


These search and find books keep Ellie entertained for hours so when I saw there was a unicorn search and find book I got a little bit excited. Everyone loves unicorns right? Ellie definitely does. In this “where’s wally” style book there are 7 different coloured unicorns to find in 17 different locations. There is so much to find that children of all ages will love this book!

Ladybird Tales My Once Upon A Time Library – £27.99

I have always wanted Ellie to enjoy the classics as well as the many amazing modern-day stories and retells in the world. This 24 book set is complete with all the classics; Beauty and The Beast, Cinderella, The Three Little Pigs, Jack and the Beanstalk and so many more! Did you know Ladybird has been publishing fairy tales for over 45 years? They are the perfect addition to any child’s bookshelf or library! I can’t wait to read these to Ellie and eventually listen to her read them herself.

Books2Door has over 7000 reviews on Trustpilot and currently have free shipping for orders over £30! You won’t be disappointed in the range of books they offer – the bargain section is pretty stocked up too!

Posted in Gifted, product review

In The Book – Review

In The Book is an online book company specialising in personalised books for children and adults of all ages. They have a wide range of books and there really is something for everyone; Disney, Peter Rabbit, Marvel, The Hungry Caterpillar, Beano and so many more. This isn’t including their own range of personalised stories. We have been very fortunate to have been gifted two of their books to review.

These stories are built around you (or your child); giving them the fun and excitement of seeing their own name built in to the story. I loved this idea as not only is the name written in the illustrations but it is also the main character in the story too.

The website is extremely easy to use and navigate, the hardest part is choosing which book to personalise. There is the option of A4 softback, A4 hardback (both available in the standard cover) and the classic hardback which is bound in a premium hardcover with gold embossing.

Once chosen there are three steps to personalising the book:

When our books arrived I was absolutely amazed at the quality and size. I obviously hadn’t read the A4 sizing and was expecting a smaller book which I was worried would be too small to keep Ellie’s attention. These are the perfect size for all readers, big and small. Each page is beautifully illustrated and the story is just magical.




Ellie’s Unicorn Adventure” is a wonderful story about a Unicorn (with your child’s name) who gets bored in the meadow and goes off on an adventure to find new places. From a pink candyland to the snowy mountain tops this story takes the reader to so many wonderful places.

Ellie’s Thoughts:

I asked Ellie what she liked the most about the Unicorn’s adventure and her reply was:

I like the Unicorn because she has the same name as me. She is cheeky. My name is in the sky. See E, L, L, I, E it says Ellie! The Unicorn likes the snow, it has footprints to go back home so she doesn’t get lost.

We also received a beautifully illustrated “Book of Nursery Rhymes” Ellie loves to sing and she has always loved nursery rhymes so I knew she would love this one so much. The book of nursery rhymes is packed full of songs little ones will already know and love such as Humpty Dumpty, The Wheels On The Bus and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, there’s even a few Mummy doesn’t remember!




Similar to the Unicorn book, Ellie’s name is on the front cover and appears throughout the pages in the illustrations. We’ve had lots of fun getting Ellie to find her name hidden on drain pipes, buses and even on pies. She gets so excited when she’s found it. It’s a great way to get them to recognise their name in written form!

For me, the best part is that you can include a picture of your child on the back page. I love this as it’s a way of remembering how old they were when they received the book. Ellie couldn’t believe her picture was in there too, she told me it must have been magic. I know that even when she is too old to be singing nursery rhymes and believing in unicorns I will always remember the smile on her face when we would read them together.

Disclosure: I was gifted these two books in exchange for an honest review by In The Book. All views, opinions and images are my own.

Posted in Gifted, parenting, product review, reading

Wonderbly Personalised Childrens Books – Review

I often wondered whether Ellie would lose the passion she has for stories as she grows up or whether it will continue to bloom. It seems quite clear to me that as she’s getting older she still loves to listen to stories, she particularly loves ones with unicorns, cheeky characters and most of all books with her name in.

We have recently been given the opportunity to review two books which have been gifted to us by Wonderbly; “I Love Daddy This Much” and “The Little Girl Who Lost Her Name”

For those who don’t know; Wonderbly is a publishing company specialising in personalised children’s books for all ages. These books make your child the star of their own story. You can even personalise the illustration to look similar to your child too!

The process of making your Wonderbly book couldn’t be simpler. The website is well designed and easy to navigate. You can search for books by age, bestsellers or you can browse through them all! There are so many wonderful titles to choose from.
First of all you need to decide on the name, the gender and the features of the main character.

You can then personalise some of the books even further:

Once you’ve chosen the format (paperback, hardback etc), the recipient and the cover colour (available on specific books) you can then dedicate your book. This appears on the inside of the book.

I Love Daddy This Much” is THE perfect Father’s Day gift for both Dad and baby/child! It’s a beautiful story all about how much Daddy is loved, who wouldn’t love this as a gift? They also do I Love You/Mummy/Grandma/Grandad This Much too!
Ellie has loved reading this with her Dad and giving him lots of cuddles when she does. She has even started repeating some of the phrases to him when she tells him she loves him. For Ellie, she was so excited to see a girl with ginger hair the same as her and her Daddy and then to see her name written across the pages was great too.

The Little Girl Who Lost Her Name” is another wonderful story using Ellie’s name throughout the book. Ellie has just started recognising her name and is now able to write her first name without any visual support which is amazing as she is now able to recognise her name in stories too. She gets very excited when she sees it written on the page. This story helps the character follow a trail to find the letters of her name and links them to different animals. Each story is completely individual, Ellie’s story won’t be the same as Jason’s story as they would meet completely different animals.

You can find all the Wonderbly titles at their website: http://www.wonderbly.com/uk
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Disclosure: I was gifted these two books in exchange for an honest review by Wonderbly. All views, opinions and images are my own.