10 New Picture Books for 2016

Two bears and a bear spotter with guide book
Category: Bookbug

As we embark on a new year at Bookbug HQ, the atmosphere is one of excitement and anticipation. In a matter of weeks, the Scottish Children's Book Awards winner will be announced, and the book selection process for the 2017/2018 Bookbug Bags will begin again. It is also a time to look ahead to the big new picture book releases that will hit the shelves of bookshops and libraries in 2016 - here's our pick of some to look out for:

Boy in bubble with eel and puffer fish
In January, we see the paperback release of The Underwater Fancy-Dress Parade by Davina Bell and Allison Colpoys (pictured left). Beautifully written and illustrated, the story of one sensitive boy's feelings will strike a chord with anyone who has a child that suffers from anxiety or shyness. Jo Empson's wonderful Little Home Bird is also released in paperback this month. This story of a little bird who loves everything about his home and doesn't understand why he has to move is perfect for any child who loves their own home and finds themselves living between more than one.

If you're a fan of Wanted! Ralfy Rabbit, Book Burglar by Emily MacKenzie, then there's a high chance that you'll love her latest offering, Stanley the Amazing Knitting Cat. Stanley LOVES to knit, but when he gets carried away with his dream of winning the Woolly Wonders Competition, he has to decide what's more important - his knitting or his friends? 

In February, the mighty award-winning partnership of Michelle Robinson (There's a Lion in my Cornflakes) and David Roberts (illustrator of the Dirty Bertie series) brings us A Beginner's Guide to Bearspotting (main picture). No self-respecting bearspotter (or fan of Michelle or David) should be without this laugh-out-loud guide!

Squirrel with nut
For those looking for new board books for a little one this year, Floris Books has My First Scottish Animals by Kate McLelland coming out in March (pictured right). Full of lively images and simple, clear words, wee ones will love making friends with the clever Border Collie puppy, the sleepy grey seal and the hairy Highland cow! Carrying on the animal theme in April, the wonderful Sebastian Braun brings us Big Bug Log, the adventure of Bugsy and his quest to find his grandparents. Packed with humour and lots of detail, this highly interactive book will keep toddlers entertained for hours. 

Mr Panda and penguin
If you loved Bookbug's Book of the Month for August, Oi Frog!, you'll be delighted to hear that author Kes Gray and illustrator Jim Field are coming together again in Quick Quack Quentin - the hilarious tale of one duck's quest for a missing vowel! Quentin was a duck with a very quick quack. 'QUCK!' said Quentin. 'What's wrong with me?'. We can't wait for this! But we'll have to be patient, just like the penguin in I'll Wait, Mr. Panda, the hotly anticipated follow up to Please, Mr.PandaCombining stunning art, an unforgettable panda and a hilarious lesson in good manners, this is certainly one to look out for in 2016 (pictured above).

Zog and the Flying Doctors, the follow-up to the bestselling Zog, will be whizzing onto the shelves in September. Welcome back Princess Pearl, Sir Gadabout and, of course, Zog the dragon as they soar over the countryside tending to sunburnt mermaids and a sneezy lion. But when the King locks Princess Pearl up in the castle, have her dreams of being a doctor come to a disappointing end? 

Monster at a castle wall
And finally, we head into the autumn with an exciting collaboration between picture book author/illustrator Oliver Jeffers and artist Sam Winston. Entitled A Child of Books, the story centres on a little girl who sails her raft “across a sea of words” to arrive at the house of a small boy. There she invites him to come away with her on an adventure where they can journey through “forests of fairy tales” and “across mountains of make-believe”. Very exciting indeed.

Keep an eye on the Bookbug blog pages for more book recommendations, Book of the Month competitions, and new and exciting book lists throughout 2016.

Happy Reading!