Press Here

A book so interactive it's almost a game. A magical read for young listeners, it's bound to entice even reluctant readers. Highly recommended. Buy from Amazon: (affiliate link)

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I often feel like I’m a bit behind the times. Press Here, by Hervé Tullet, is fairly popular, but wasn’t mainstream enough to find its way into my frame of reference until I started spending time hunting for excellent books. So now I keep having that moment where I rave to people about my amazing new discovery and they say “oh yeah, that book is great, we’ve had it for ages.” Story of my life, really, being late to the party.

Press Here, by Herve Tullet
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This clever book redefines storytime, by engaging listeners in action to 'cause' the dots to move and change. It has proved very popular with our two-year-old, but would be even better for ages 3-6.

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This is one of those books that redefines storytime. The premise is that the coloured spots on the page respond to actions, so that by pressing, shaking or blowing on the page you can make stuff happen. The thrill of power draws kids in (like shouting magic words at a show) and though I imagine the novelty wears off more quickly for older children, that jaded knowing stage is years away from hitting our household so I reckon we’re going to get plenty more mileage from this book.

Press Here is really aimed at kids a bit older than mine (I’d say 3-6 would probably be the best age group) but our two-year-old already gets a lot of satisfaction out of the interactivity, and regularly chooses it to read (I think three times in one days is the current record). The actions are simple, although the Little Monkey still needs a little help with his left and right.

Plot is lacking — it is just a sequence of actions and consequences — but that’s kind of the point. It’s a book of actions, not of words. In fact, I change the words quite a bit, to make it more conversational — so long as the instruction is given, the phrasing doesn’t matter so much.

So it won’t replace a heartwarming snuggly bedtime story, but alongside a collection of traditional stories it’s a great addition to the bookshelf. I’m officially a convert — now I just need to find some people to tell who didn’t already know how awesome it is!

Awesome or Average: Awesome

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