“Each Peach Pear Plum” by Janet & Allan Ahlberg

Each Peach Pear Plum written by Allan Ahlberg and illustrated by Janet Ahlberg is published by Puffin Books an imprint of the Penguin Group. It was first published by Viking in 1978 and that same year won the Kate Greenaway Medal.

I like this 32-page book because of the detailed illustrations and its interactive text. On the first page the reader is introduced to Tom Thumb by trying to find him in the picture. On the next page it continues with the same character but the reader has to find the next character in the ‘I spy’ game:

Each Peach Pear Plum

I spy Tom Thumb

Tom Thumb in the cupboard

I spy Mother Hubbard

Mother Hubbard down the cellar

I spy Cinderella

Each rectangular page tells the reader who they need to find. All the characters are from nursery rhymes and fairy tales. At the end of the book they come together to eat a plum pie. Combine that with their rhyming text and excellent illustrations it makes for a perfect board book.

The book is made of heavy cardstock perfect for babies to hold and gnaw on but still perfect for one to three-year-olds. The story and illustrations makes it perfect for parents to read to their children.

The text is a large Times font making it easy to read and see for toddlers on the left-side page. On the right side page the illustrations have one character in plain view for everyone to see and the other character hidden in the illustration for the child to find. On the page where Cinderella is dusting the banister, the Three Bears can be found looking through the window. To find them the child has to see past the dog sleeping on the couch; the towel and socks drying at the foot of the stairs; a broom and a mop bucket leaning next to the drying laundry; a flower pot on the windowsill; a fireplace with a kettle sitting over it; and a butter churn.

I obtained the book from the library but it sells for $6.99 which is the going rate for most board books.

Each Peach Pear Plum is a perfect addition to Penguin’s board books. Other books they publish through their imprints are by Eric Carle, Beatrix Potter, Eric Hill’s Spot books, A.A. Milne, etc.

I liked reading this book just to see how the character was hidden in the illustrations. Plus it has the perfect ending for children, all the characters from Tom Thumb to The Three Bears to the Wicked Witch to Robin Hood all gather around a table laughing and eating plum pie.

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