Activity Book · Non-Fiction

Review: The Unworry Book by Alice James

Review: The Unworry Book by Alice James

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Let go of your worries and identify your emotions. This brilliant activity book is on hand to help everyone deal with worries, fears, and bad memories. 

Unlike standard activity books, this has a range of different pages. There are advice sheets, spaces to write and identify worries, drawing pages, puzzles and games for mindfulness and distraction, diary pages and places to figure out what is most important to the reader. It is not only a fun space. It is a toolkit and helping hand. 

The Unworry Book came at a brilliant time. I was able to test it out not only in the spirit of a good reviewer but as a place to help me deal with my own emotions and fears. Although I am an adult, and this is targeted at younger readers, I found it a brilliant way to try out new management techniques. For example, I would never have thought of using a dot-to-dot for mindfulness or of drawing a creature to represent my feelings, but both activities have their place. Following on from this it would be possible to build a worry kit based on the activities which worked best for me. 

Worries lead to so many places. To a sleepless night, to a shouting session, to sheer desperation. The Unworry Book has a technique for every occurrence. It encourages the reader to manage their emotions and keep their fears in proportion. 

The design mixes calming colours with happy ones. Pale blues and greys with bright yellow. A round, friendly-looking guide follows the reader through the book. Not only does this provide a friendly face, but we see a different range of facial expressions which might prompt the reader to think about how they are feeling. 

This book is a big hit in so many ways. Unlike conventional books about emotions, which can feel heavy on the lectures, this leaves the reader to find the right page for the moment. 

A section of numbers and advice at the back suggests places where young readers can go if things get too much. 

A treasure trove of ideas for dealing with stress and unhappiness. 

 

Thanks to Usborne Books for my gifted copy of The Unworry Book. Opinions my own.

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Activity Book · Non-Fiction

Review: Toca Life Holiday Super Sticker Book

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What would you like to do on Holiday? Go sightseeing? Laze around on the beach? With the Toca Life Holiday sticker book, children can explore and build different locations. 

Toca Life, I am reliably informed, is an app which has been described as a virtual dolls house. I can imagine this will be wildly popular. Do you remember loading the Sims, using the money cheat until your Sims had unlimited finances and building the house of all houses? I was that kid. Toca Life satisfies children’s curiosity about different surroundings and gives them free reign to develop their perfect settings. 

img_6922Different settings are represented as double-page spreads and the main focus of the book is on filling those settings with stickers. What a selection of stickers! People and pets, food and pot-plants and signs and every object imaginable. This would be perfect for slightly older children, who might have outgrown the simple activities and chunky stickers of other books. It would certainly keep kids occupied on a long journey – when they are long past interest in anything else, just making their own worlds would provide a perfect distraction. 

There are a couple of puzzles here too – a memory game, a spot the difference and a ‘hunt the rainbow poo’ game which runs throughout the book. These add an extra dimension to the book and gives it extra keep-them-occupied power.

The stickers are super cute and could be used to decorate things outside of the book. This makes the book a great present – if the kids aren’t interested in the activities, they’ve still got a fab range of stickers. 

The Holidays may be over, but there are hours of fun here. 

 

Thanks to Ladybird Books for my sticker book. Opinions my own.