One of my absolute favourite Nosy Crow books from last year (I know that, like parents, we’re not supposed to have favourites, but in this case I do, and I cannot help myself) was Axel Scheffler’s Flip Flap Farm. It’s an absolutely perfect example of a simple concept, elegantly executed, with wonderful illustrations by Axel and a funny, silly text: it’s like the Platonic Ideal of flip-flap books. The sturdy board split-pages and spiral binding are perfect for young hands, and with 121 animal combinations, little readers will return to this book again and again. And it’s appeal goes FAR beyond children: last week, I gave a talk to the Publishing MA class at UCL – a room of very bright twenty-something-year-olds – and mentioned Flip Flap Farm as an example of digital and print publishing blurring into each other (there’s also an app of the book). At the end of my lecture I asked if anyone had any questions. One hand immediately shot up. “Can we see what a squurkey looks like?”
Here, for posterity, is the animal in question:
Needless to say, I’ve been incredibly impatient for the follow-up to Flip Flap Farm. And finally, the day has arrived: we have some marvellous proof copies of Axel Scheffler’s Flip Flap Safari! I think the book might be – dare I say it – EVEN better than Flip Flap Farm: it’s simply impossible to pick up a copy without smiling. There are eleven new animals, 121 new combinations, and lots more funny rhymes and silly names. Here, for instance, is an Elephingo (click the picture to enlarge):
Here’s a Zebodile:
And here’s a Cheetelope:
Words cannot express how much I love the Flip Flap series. They are a FLAWLESS books – perfect for any two or six year old.