You sit down together as a family and ask your child what they would like to read from your bulging bookcase. Will they choose the timeless classic that you yourself read as a child? Perhaps they will pluck for a modern tale with its dayglo colouring and storyline based around pants? Nope. Neither of these. All you will hear is “Stickers!” Your child would rather play with a sticker activity book than read with you, so best make it a worthwhile sticker activity book.
‘‘My First Wild Activity Book’’ by Isabel Otter and Maxime Lebrun is a top grade activity book that covers various wild biomes by not only allowing you to add stickers, but also quiz you on different types of animals, play spot the difference, or simply colour in. Each section has a spread that folds out so you can add your stickers, but no inch is wasted. Rather than leaving the back of these images plain, there are more fun activities to partake in on the reverse.
The use of every iota of space is the type of thing that lifts ‘‘Wild’’ from just being another sticker book. As a genre it is normally one that I buy from the bargain shelves. You know that within a week or so all the stickers will be stuck and images coloured; there is no re-reading value here, therefore why pay more? Thankfully, ‘‘Wild’’ shows that if you do pay a little more, you will get a better book.
The entire book is perfectly aimed at the 5-7 age group, it is informative, yet still fun. There are facts to read, but you never have long to go to find a fun puzzle. The entire things is also full colour and wonderfully illustrated by Lebrun, it must have taken a lot of effort to get so many images into 72 pages. The A4 format and full use of space does make this feel like a premium activity book. The fact that it is split into environments means that it is also perfect to use as a pick up and play title. On a car journey the format is great for taking up a proportion of the ride.
‘‘Wild’’ is a cut way above the type of activity title you buy from the supermarket as its lush illustrations and solid factual knowledge means that it acts more as a fun, interactive encyclopaedia. However, it does still suffer from the perennial activity book problem – use a pen once and you are done. The stickers can only be done once and most of the puzzles are single use too. There is a little more to read than in most activity books, but still not enough that you would go back once the fun has been filled. Luckily, you will have a great time at least once with the book.