Best Books and Super Songs

As we were sent a copy of Pop Reads to review, it inspired me to write this post about Audrey and Rex’s favourite books and songs (basically because I know I’ll forget and I want a record (no pun intended))!

Pop Reads books are by a Brighton dad – licensing Sony/ATV music in children’s book form – they are the only books of their kind and they have a Kickstarter which you should check out here.

We got “Perfect Day” and I have to be honest, the first time I sang it to Audrey, she got quite annoyed; “You can’t sing it!! You have to read it!” Ha ha. We had left the book on the coffee table and a friend read (sang) it to them whilst we were out; “That’s a surreal book isn’t it?” he commented when we got home. Apparently his singing was allowed… anyway after that Rex was singing “Perfect Day” and thrusting the book in my hand – a hit! Since then, I have tried reading the book to Audrey and she insists I sing it! Success! As singing and reading are two of our favourite pastimes, we think Pop Reads is a great idea – check out some of the other songs available; Can I Kick It?, ABC, Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, Race for the Prize and I Wish it Could be Christmas Everyday.

Audrey and her Pop Reads book in our messy house.

Audrey and Rex’s favourite songs include (I’m now wondering if any are Sony and potential future Pop Reads…):

Roar – Katy Perry

Audrey used to absolutely HATE this song and I really don’t know why. She would freak out if it came on the radio, saying “I don’t like it!”, but then one day, the lovely Singing Hands ladies did a Makaton signed version and whadayaknow? I now have to listen to this song at least three times a week.

Hocus Pocus – Focus

We were listening to tbe Baby Driver soundtrack and Audrey took to this straight away. Sometimes songs just reach into her soul and she loves them instantly. She would call this song “Lolly” (because of the yodeling), but soon got the real title thanks to our Google home thingy (“Hey Google! Play my Focus!”).

La Bamba – Richie Valens

This one is one of Rex’s favourites. We go to a weekly music group called Little Pickles, run by a guy called Dave, who peppers the standard ‘Wheels on the Bus’ moments with snippets of old and new pop songs. This one spoke to Rex and he likes to sing it and dance to it at least once a week.

The Lion Sleeps Tonight – Tight Fit

Again, one Rex fell in love with from Little Pickles, but one I think that stuck after some YouTubing with my mother-in-law.

Ice Ice Baby – Vanilla Ice

This was Ted’s entry to hip hop in 1990. So naturally he tried it out on Audrey and again, instant hit. She was OBSESSED by this one for a while, but it has died down recently due to Roar.

Uptown Funk – Bruno Mars

Audrey really loves the Carpool Karaoke with Bruno Mars, but this song is s stand out classic that both kids love a boogie to.

I Got the Moves – Habibi

We were listening to a friend’s radio show (Tuckshop Community Radio) when this came on and both kids (Rex was about 1, Audrey almost 4) danced and danced.

Favourite books:

Wild – Emily Hughes

I stumbled across this in the Book Nook and instantly loved the illustration, partly because the feral little girl has an Audrey vibe. I had no hopes for the kids liking it as they are so unpredictable and make me read them lots of books I hate, but this one ‘spoke’ to them. They love her expressions – especially when she is angry and “enough was enough!”.

My Teacher is a Monster – Peter Brown

This was a gift for Audrey ahead of school starting, but strangely it was Rex who became fixated on this one and chose it every bedtime for weeks.

The Wolf, the Duck and the Mouse – Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen

Another sneaky Book Nook find that I just loved for me. Turns out that the kids and I share the same taste quite often because they love it too. They particularly like shouting “Charge!” and they call this one “Oh woe!” because of the wolf’s cries.

The Tiger Who Came to Tea – Judith Kerr

My favourite book as a child. I loved the pictures and still remember loving the bit where they go out in the dark to a cafe! Wow. The kids love this one too but I think mostly because the tiger is exciting, going out to cafes is pretty standard for them.

The Paper Dolls – Julia Donaldson

Well, who am I kidding? They like tonnes of Julia’s books (Zog, Cave Baby, The Gruffalo…), but this one is my favourite. Audrey and I actually stumbled across this one in the library and it was her go-to bedtime story for a very long time.

Please Mr Panda – Steve Antony

This one was my mother-in-law’s discovery and we love the grumpy panda and his rude friends.

Superbat – Matt Carr

Audrey was going to a superhero-themed birthday when I discovered this book as a present and decided to get her a copy too. The characters have excellent names (Pat, Frida…) and when she’s older she will realise she is learning a lot about bats!

Where the Wild Things Are – Maurice Sendak

An absolute classic with beautiful illustrations, try humming Toto’s ‘Africa’ during the wild rumpus (it works for our two)!

I Dare You Not to Yawn – Hélène Boudreau

Another lucky library find; this is a great bedtime book as it definitely gets us all yawning and feeling sleepy, it’s also a lot of fun.

In truth, the book list could go on and on. They go through phases of choosing the same titles at bedtime over and over, but then a new favourite comes along… long may their love of books and music continue!