Something a little different: Dinosaur Board Books by Megan E Bryant

A colourful collection of four brilliant board books for your little ones to help with their abcs, numbers, shapes and colours. This collection is a must have for any parent, especially one with children who love dinosaurs as much as I do! 
This collection was sent to me from the publisher as it fits in well with my obsession with dinosaurs. I loved seeing the wonderful illustrations, by Luciana Navarro Powell, of all the many different types of dinosaurs and will definitely be recommending this to my colleagues and friends who have kids. Unfortunately I don’t have my own children yet but I can just see how much of a favourite these books would have been to my nephew just 6 to 12 months ago (he’s a little old for them now) and other friends kids.

First of all I want to talk about Countasaurus, this bright wonderful book offers help in the learning of numbers from one to ten, with a bonus of 50 added in at the end! each of the illustrations has countable aspects which tie in with the text so that parent and toddler can add together. I think I had two favourites from this book and that had to be the nine Maiasaura, stomping through a stream because the page was so bright and fun and aslo the ten eggs in the Tyrannosaurus Rex’s next, but more than those his fifty terrible teeth, however the parent or guardian reading this to the child may have their time cut out trying to count the 50 terrible teeth! 

I think Countasaurus is the best place to start as its definitely the easiest to read out of the four books, next up I would move gradually to Shapeasaurus, if I had the choice but we all know that kids often like to pick their books themselves! The pages in Shapeasarus tell us a story of three baby t-rex’s from the time of hatching – from their oval eggs – to sleeping on square rocks, looking at stegosaurus’ with diamond plates and them chomping on bones with their triangle teeth. Its a sweet little tale from them being born to them having their own nests with more oval shaped eggs and I really enjoyed it. 

Next up we go to Colorasaurus… which I have to admit I was a little upset that the American spelling of ‘color’ was adopted for the book but these were originally published and picked up from the American branch of Chronicle to my knowledge so that will have to be overlooked. The Colorasaurus book was fantastic and the each of the colours mentioned within the book stand out so amazingly bright against anything else in the pictures. I loved how stark the blue water was against the rest of the page and the tone adopted for the pink t-rex tongues was so noticeable I thought it was different material to the card the book was made from! The pictures in this book will have any kid stoping their parent to gaze at the page more before its turned over! 

Finally I go to Alphasaurus, which I have to admit is a bit of a tongue twister in places. This one teaches us the abc’s by using dinosaur names – and yes there is a dinosaur for every letter of the alphabet! This is the one I’d go to last purely because some of the dinos have quite hard to pronounce names, however most of them are made up of lots of  easy to pronounce syllables which make things easier, you just have to put the syllables together! I loved the alliteration use in this book which also helps with the abc’s and the fact that each of the dinosaurs were doing things that began with the same letter of their names and you could see them doing it on the page. I think may favourites were the Diplodocus dizzy from dancing, the Helioceratops happy to haul hatchlings, the Oviraptor ordered out of the orchard and the extra long, extra large and extra loud Xiaosaurus! This one will be a great one to read aloud to any kid once you’ve wrapped your tongue around the names.
The books are quite big, I’d say around A4 landscaped size but they are made into shapes reflecting the dinosaurs on the front which I thought was a really great idea. EAch book has a different dinosaur in a different colour and although you can tell the books are all form the same collection they each look exciting in their own way. Reading these to any child will depend on their interest in dinosaurs, the colours and pictures used and the age of the child. I think they would make great gifts for any child from around 18 to 30 months.
The books were released at different times with Alphasaurus and Colorasaurus coming out on August 1st, Shapeasaurus and Countasaurus following on September 1st, all by Chronicle. My copies were sent to me form the publisher.