In | Ivy's Reading Corner: Allan Ahlberg

September 2018

Our home is absolutely full of Alhberg books, so after their first feature in Ivy's Reading Corner last month and in honour of a fast approaching Breast Cancer Awareness month, we wanted to dedicate a whole post to them. Allan and Janet, a married couple created countless books together before Janet passed away but Allan has gone on to write a fair few more with other illustrators. There is something so utterly timeless about their classic children's books and beautiful illustrations, it is no wonder that what were once my favourites are now fast becoming Ivy's. It was pretty difficult choosing only 5 so I let Ivy do the deciding - let's see how she did..

1. Hooray For Bread by Allan Ahlberg and Bruce Ingham
This may not be the first book you think of when you think of the Ahlbergs, it might not even be the tenth, but this is possibly Ivy's favourite ever book. About 18 months ago, she chose this book in the library and month after month she refused to let it go back so eventually we gave in and bought our own copy and it is still read most days. It tells the tale of a baker's loaf in Ahlberg's traditional rhyming style and although I wouldn't put it down as a literary masterpiece, anything Ivy loves, I love too.

2. Funny Bones by Janet and Allan Ahlberg
I can really remember this book standing out to me at school and I love it even more now than I did back then. The perfect light-hearted halloween story for all the family this month.

3. The Jolly Postman by Janet and Allan Ahlberg
Having endlessly read Peepo! and the Baby Catalogue pretty much from birth, one of the things I love most about the Ahlberg's is that Ivy can continue growing up with their storie and the familiarity of the illustrations catches her eye before I even suggest them for her. There is a reason why the Jolly Postman is such a well loved book - the clever interactions of different post, the recognisable fairy tales and the simple cup of tea at each house. I can't wait to introduce the Christmas version soon.

4. Baby On Board* by Allan Ahlberg 
Speaking of recognisable illustrations again, for Baby On Board, Ahlberg worked with Emma Chichester Clarke - The author of the Blue Kangaroo series which is also a favourite here. This is the story of a baby who ends up washed out to sea with his toys but fear not, it's an easy read for beginners and has a very happy ending.

5. Each Peach Pear Plum* by Janet and Allan Ahlberg
You know a book is perfect when you have to have more than one copy. We were very kindly sent the 30th anniversary copy of Each Peach Pear Plum much to Ivy's delight so the well loved (read: manky half-eaten) board book version we already owned could be permanently donated to Ted's bookshelf. Books don't get more timeless than this!