This week we were reading the German book Mein kleiner Wald by Katrin Wiehle, winner of the Best German Book Design award 2013! Published by Beltz+Gelberg, It's a '100% Naturbuch', printed with natural inks on recycled paper, and the actual paper colour is textured beige. It's a sturdy board book with rounded edges and when I first stumbled across it on Katrin Wiehle's website it reminded me instantly of the vintage picture books from the 50s or 60s, particularly the type face which is all in capital letters. The style is very beautiful and minimal, very clean and uses only muted earthy colours. This book is part of a 4 part series and focuses on animals who live in the woods and their little adventures. The text is minimal too and manages to be both educational and engaging with a sweet storyline.
My toddler loves pointing out the trees, the leaves and makes her usual animal noises for these more unusual ones - badger, fox and squirrel, but altogether this book probably works best from age 2-3 upwards. What I particularly love about it is that it's like a special little handbook of nature that young children can take along, and use as a reference book to compare notes with what they've seen and found in the woods themselves, like pine cones, leaves and berries.
The three other books of this series explore garden, pond and jungle, each of them showing a cute gang of animals who tell the story. We need to get the jungle one next!