If you are anything like me you've never heard of Usborne until riiiight now. Or maybe you have, in which case then, I sit corrected. But me and mine, we had never heard of them. Usborne Books & More offers over 2,000 titles, which includes books published by both Usborne and Kane Miller. Their books are well known for being high-quality, innovative, and educational. After watching my kids read their books, I totally get that! A family friend (hi Justine!) is a consultant for Usborne Books & More and she recently contacted me to see if I'd like to check out a few of the books and share my experience with my readers, as in, you. I love books... My kids love books... So, yes! Of course!
As part of this process I also attended a virtual party on Facebook. Justine (family friend consultant extraordinaire) just exudes passion about these products. You can really tell she puts a massive amount of effort into the party, the posts, and answering any questions you may have. She even comes up with a personalized wish list for you with books she thinks the kids in your life will love! The party itself lasted about an hour, but you could come and go as you liked, obviously. I just had my phone with my Facebook app open while we watched Homeland one night. In fact you didn't even need to be there at that time you could have checked in anytime, even the next morning. She posted a bunch of times regarding all sorts of fun things, mainly highlighting the different types of books available with Usborne Books & More. Basically each time you commented on her posts you got an entry for a giveaway she was hosting once the whole party wraps 24 hours later. People who love books, chatting about books, all hosted by someone who is so passionate about books, (never forget the side of wine) makes it a fun time!
Practically every book has a corresponding video on YouTube that you can peruse to get an idea of what the book entails, which is pretty smart considering that it's a virtual party. It's hard to judge before seeing them in person but these are extremely high-quality books. I'll link to each book's video below if you're interested in seeing what I mean. Justine sent us a total of seven books to check out, as well as an Easter Basket full of goodies for the kids (she's a huge hit in my house right now so thank you Justine!! Sorry about the stickers and candy not making the photo, my children are like animals.). You can find the full list of goodies she sent us here.
The group's favorite book was the Pull Back Busy Car Book. Like, David took one look at it coming out of the bag and had.to.have.it.in.his.hands.immediately. They pull back the little car that came with it and it just goes and goes on it's own little fun track and they learn their prepositions at the same time! Oprah calls it "multi-tasking." At one point this day I was like wow they have been playing/fighting over this book for three hours! Insanity. I'm going to need to get another copy just to keep the peace.
The See Inside Your Body book was also a big hit, tons of tabs to lift up and lots of good information for them to learn. The laughter and giggles that went round when a tab lifted up to show an actual poop.... well, let's just say my kids are big on the poo humor. Kids, right?
The Shine-A-Light: On The Train book is amazing! Such a great book for bed time! You just place a flashlight behind the page and see what's "hiding" there. I may just keep this in Dom's rocket tent for him to check out because it's easier to see what is hiding when it's not a full on sun shiney day. Usborne Books & More also has a 50% replacement policy sooooo.... if the kids get a little overzealous with the flashlight and the discovery of it all well... there you have it.
The Wipe-Clean Lower-case Letters book is just perfect for us at this stage in our lives. I was worried that it wouldn't wipe off easily but turned out to not be a concern at all! It comes off easy peasey. I really love how they lump together letters that are "long" or letters that "bounce." Even Letty took to using this right away, and here we thought David would benefit most from it. And as an added bonus? It's only $7.99! I was shocked to learn that over half of Usborne Books & More's books are under $9.99. Which is pretty great considering the high quality!
The That's Not My Bunny book we thought Dom would love because it has all those lovely touchy feely sensory stuff happening in it. Plus its really cute and well, animals. David took on the role as reader real quick with that one. This would be a great gift idea for a baby or toddler's Easter Basket this year; I know the kids loved it in the basket Justine made for them!
The Find the Duck book is definitely a book for the younger ones, trying to locate the duck obviously on each page. It's a really cute board book! Board books are my jam since Dominic is The Destroyer and well, sturdy books are key! And of course my kids loved the page where the boy was on the potty. I think I'm sensing a theme here....
Lastly was the 10 More Ten-Minute Stories book. We read to the kids every night before bed and sometimes the books can just go on and on and on and the kids love those right? Pushing back bedtime? So I love the idea of this, one story, guaranteed less than ten minutes. Actually I timed it and I read Rapunzel in just over five minutes so there you have it! And Letty loves all the great illustrations!
Justine also kindly included these fun little dry erase cards all together on a ring for each kid (from the activity sets 100 Things to Do on a Trip and Animal Doodles. See also: genius). Such a great idea! I may just keep them forever and ever in our diaper bag to bring out in a pinch. The kids have been all over them all week.
I literally (literally) never host parties like this, direct marketing just hasn't been my jam.... But, why not? Try new things, yeah? So! I'll be hosting a party (please come join me so I'm not out there all alone by my onesie.). It'll be this Sunday night (March 12th), at 8:30 p.m. (EST), after most kids are asleep so no missing time with them (that's key)! There will be a raffle for the Busy Car Book (clearly a house favorite) just for rsvping so be sure to do that to be entered. Click here to rsvp! There will be more free giveaways happening during the party too, not just the Busy Car Book, so you don't want to miss out on all the fun! And the books!
If you want to check out the books Justine was so kind to share with us before the party here's the link! Just make sure you see my party name next to "eshow" she told me, before making any purchases.
Further information and book videos:
Easter Basket book ideas (including Find the Duck and That's Not My Bunny).
About Usborne Publishing and how some of their books are made here.
For questions feel free to comment on this post or email Justine directly here.