Charles Fuge's Wonderful Wildlife from Parragon is a perfect picture book for my two girls; when I read it to 16 month old Holly she hears me repeating the numbers from 1 to 10 and loves to look at the different animals and birds on each page. But with 4 year old Lara the book is one that she can sit and attempt to read with me. Counting, Animals, Reading... you can't get much more perfect right now!
Wonderful Wildlife starts with one lonely badger and ends with a whole host of owls! Each page or double page features a number in big bold lettering which helps toddlers start to recognise the symbols for different numbers. Lara has clearly established the link between the number of animals on each page and the symbol for the number at the top.
The text describes each group of creatures such as "hungry birds" or "worms wiggling" and it is written in short clear sentences and in bold round lettering so is suitable for first readers. There are a few tricky words for Lara such as "sight" which is probably a bit much to expect of her right now but in general the combination of the words and pictures puts Lara in a great place to be able to start reading Wonderful Wildlife on her own.
I like the fact that the book features lots of different types of creatures - meerkats and badgers and worms all in the same book! There is a gentle rhyme and a semblance of a story and all of these things make it a hit in our house.