Jojo – a cute little bunny with words to share

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I’m declaring this the Cutest First Word Book of the Year.

Join bunny rabbit Jojo and his sister Lulu as they explore (and label) the world around them in Jojo’s First Word Book by French author and artist, Xavier Deneux.

Each page presents drawings of commonly found objects alongside single-sentence narratives. For example, a picture of Lulu’s polka-dotted bedroom, with the bed, wardrobe, lamp, pillow and rug labelled is followed by a picture of Lulu jumping joyfully on her bed, with the caption, ‘It’s time for bed but Lulu is not sleepy!’

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There’s so much to love about this book – the thick, glossy pages; the neat tabs that divide the different sections; and the carry-handle on the spine of the book – you cannot overestimate how much your toddler will love that carry-handle. And the utterly charming illustrations – simple, colourful and very, very cute. There are more than 200 objects to name, plus things that are a little trickier to ‘label’, such as feelings, learning to ride and potty training.

Two things to note – for language purists, there are occasional American words (for example sidewalk for footpath and faucet for tap) – it’s usually a bugbear of mine but in this case, the illustrations are so lovely that I can overlook the American-isms. Secondly, Jojo and Lulu’s dad is featured on a couple of pages while their mum is not so prominent – the tasks assigned to the characters might be considered stereotypical (I won’t comment because I don’t really know how rabbits divide household tasks!).

Find Jojo’s First Word Book at Book Depository, which delivers free to Australia. It’s suitable for children aged one year and over. For more board books for babies featuring Deneux’s gorgeous illustrations, check out the Touch Think Learn series.

Katrina Whelen

Katrina studied planning and design, did the hard yards working in a big office building and then traded it all in for a relaxing (!) life at home with four children. She now fills her time with writing, completing a degree in genetics and taxiing her children around Melbourne to their various sporting commitments (not necessarily in that order).

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