I love the look on kids’ faces when they open a book and see their names in the pages of the story. So in celebration of the biggest day of all—their birthday!—here are a couple beautifully illustrated books that will make the birthday boy or girl feel even more special.
In Paper Hat Press’ Whose Birthday Is It? all the toys come together to throw a party for your favorite birthday child. Illustrated by the amazing Micah Player, who we’ve loved as the cover artist for Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band and as author/illustrator of Chloe Instead, this colorful storybook has some nice personalized touches. From the cake that is set with the correct number of candles, to the birthday child’s address written on the invitation, I can’t imagine a little one who wouldn’t be delighted to hear this story over and over again.
The pages are thick enough to withstand enthusiastic flipping, and the hard cover is die-cut to reveal an illustration of a little boy or girl wearing their numbered birthday hat. Along with choosing gender, you can also select from three different skin tones to make sure kids of all colors get to feel like this book was indeed made “just for them.”
For those who chew on their stories as much as look at the pictures, The I See Me Very Happy Birthday board book (at very top) is a perfect way to give a toddler a unique, personalized gift that won’t be “loved” to death. I love the collage-type illustrations by San Francisco’s Mati McDonough which accompany a story about forest creatures getting ready to throw a party for the birthday child.
There are many personalizations in this little square book, my favorite being the birthday banner that has the child’s name spelled out on little flags. There are “boy” and “girl” versions of the same title—I only wish that instead of the traditional blue for boy, pink for girl cover options that there was a more modern gender-neutral option as well. Or heck, even blue for girls. Though surely the toddler receiving the book won’t mind one way or another.