The best and craziest picture books for children

Julie Fulton Author Of Bears Don't Eat Egg Sandwiches
By Julie Fulton

The Books I Picked & Why

There's a Pig Up My Nose!

By John Dougherty, Laura Hughes

Book cover of There's a Pig Up My Nose!

Why this book?

One morning Natalie wakes to find her nose goes oink whenever she speaks. Her doctor says she isn’t ill, a pig has simply trotted up it in the night. A riotous story with a novel idea played to the full. The matter-of-fact way Natalie’s parents handle the news contrasts perfectly with the chaos of Natalie’s classmates attempting to extract said pig. Its constant oinking ruins their game of hide and seek and completely puts them off their ham rolls. A pot of pepper finally does the trick, until Natalie wakes the next day with… but that would be telling.

Readers will love the whacky ways classmates try to rid Natalie of her pig and the unexpected ending will delight. There will be animal noises in your house for days!

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Silly Doggy!

By Adam Stower

Book cover of Silly Doggy!

Why this book?

When Lily looks out of her bedroom window she gets the best surprise – a doggy! But this is no ordinary doggy. There’s been an escape from the zoo… Readers know from the outset Lily’s new pet is really a bear. Hear them shout ‘but he’s not a dog!’

Even Lily notices he’s quite big ‘for a dog’, but insists on taking him for a walk and teaching him tricks, none of which he is any good at. Unfortunately, the zookeeper recognises his bear from the ‘lost doggy’ poster Lily’s mum makes her display. She must give him back.

A beautifully illustrated story, full of optimism and a little girl’s irrepressibly wonderful outlook on life. It will have you laughing all the way from beginning to the cheerful final twist.

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Ferocious Wild Beasts!

By Chris Wormell

Book cover of Ferocious Wild Beasts!

Why this book?

Jack’s lost in the forest; the forest Mum warned him is full of ‘ferocious, wild beasts’. A friendly bear offers to help, but is soon as scared as Jack when he hears how hairy and big some of the beasts are. A variety of other creatures join them – there’s safety in numbers when you might be squished or pounced on or gobbled up by who knows what. And then a wild roar echoes through the forest…

I love how the creatures all seem perfectly friendly to Jack. His terrifying them all by retelling his tales of ferocious beasts, again and again, is brilliant. And the ending is just perfect – especially for any ferocious mum out there!

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The Great Dog Bottom Swap

By Peter Bently, Mei Matsuoka

Book cover of The Great Dog Bottom Swap

Why this book?

The dogs are having a high-class summer ball. They dance and jump and jive to the band, but things don’t turn out quite as planned. The ever-more-frantic twisting and twirling is more than an afghan can handle; he trips and knocks over a candle. The ensuing blaze causes the dogs to leave in a hurry and the low-down belongings they left in the cloakroom on arrival get thoroughly mixed up in the rush.

A barking mad tale that rolls along in superb rhyme, explaining exactly why it is that every dog gives another dog’s bottom a sniff when they meet! Perfect for all little dog lovers.

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Green Eggs and Ham

By Dr. Seuss

Book cover of Green Eggs and Ham

Why this book?

I couldn’t have a ‘best crazy book’ list without a Dr. Seuss on it! This one is stuffed full of rhythmic repetition, which drives the story along until you’re breathless, and includes the craziest of scenarios. Just the title is enough to tell you this is no ordinary story.

When faced with such a grumpy old grouch, the persistence of Sam-I-Am to get him to try his green eggs and ham is medal-worthy. It just goes to show we can’t really know what we like until we try it!

This is the perfect book to introduce children to the joy of words and reading – something so important and valuable.

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