1001 Things to Spot in Fairyland by Gillian Doherty and Anna Milbourne, illustrated by Teri Gower
Geared Towards: Ages 4-8
Published By: Usborne Books
Publication Date: January 2006
My five year old absolutely loves to play games like ISpy (both the board game and the original, no board included, version). So when she was about on the 3-4 yrs old cusp I began introducing her to the fun world of hidden picture puzzles. She became hooked almost right away, and has a surprising eye for detail when looking. Shoot, some of the times I don't even see the object and she's done found it and moved along to the next.
As soon as I saw the cover, (Yes, another cover attaction.) I knew that even if my daughter wasn't interested in the book, which I was certain she would be, I wanted to do the puzzles myself. The bright and whimsical illustrations, inspire you to want to pick up the book and seek out the hidden objects.
In a dual page spread with such intricate pictures, it can be quite difficult for a smaller child to navigate their way through the puzzle if they don't know exactly what they are looking for. Unfortunately, many of the hidden picture style books out there require the reader to be able to read the name of what it is they are looking for and then search for the item without any real direction. This is great if the child is on the older end of the spectrum (6-7), but for younger kids it can pose too difficult a challenge and become a discouragement. With this Usborne version, however, the authors/publishers have taken all the guess work out of it by placing easy to read numbers, words, AND pictures of the items around the border of the picture. Children can easily determine how many of each object they are searching to locate, as well as exactly what that item will look like.
My daughter is able to do the regular hidden picture style books quite well with practice, but this was a nice change for her because she really didn't need to have me standing over her to help. That's not to say we didn't do any of the puzzles together, quite the contrary. It is to say though that this book was able to sufficiently provide entertainment and brain stimulation for my five year old, and she was able to do it all on her own when she wanted. Lots of fun!
This book would definitely be at the top of my list as far as favorites in the genre/style go. It certainly is one I would love to add to our collection.
OUR RATING: 5 Hearts