The royal baby's big red bus tour of London by Martha Mumford

cover image

Ill. by Ada Grey. Bloomsbury, 2016. ISBN 9781408868966
(Age: 4+) Highly recommended. London, Royal family, Great Britain, Babies. After the success of the first three books devoted to the offspring of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Shh don't wake the royal baby, Happy birthday royal baby, and Hooray it's a new royal baby, it's great to see a fourth book devoted to the children's view of the city in which they live, London. Few books exist extolling the main features of some of our great cities, so this will make a perfect introduction to London and the iconic features of that place to a child or class. I loved looking at the views the book offers, reminding me of the things I saw when there. For children it will be a fabulous journey on the big red bus, the well known London transport system. The shiny red bus on the cover will ensure readers open the book and read on.
The Royal Family is sitting in the gardens at Buckingham Palace when a big red bus pulls up calling them to come on a tour of London. They all pile on board, taking along a bus load of accoutrements!
The bus pulls into a range of major London sights, Natural History Museum, ZSL London Zoo, Regent's Park, British Museum, National Portrait Gallery, Trafalgar Square, Nelson's Column before going onto the River Thames. Here they cruise past the Houses of Parliament, Tower of London, Big Ben, Tower Bridge and on down to Greenwich, where they spy the Observatory and Planetarium. On the return journey they stop at London Eye and then return to the palace for tea. Going to bed, the prince realises that he has lost his toy, a baby dinosaur, so mum retraces their steps to find it for him.
This is a fun book to read, encouraging discussion of the Royal Family and what it does during the day, as well as showing off the wonderful sights of London and what the city offers to its visitors. The funny illustrations will encourage discussion about travel and transport as well as city life.
Fran Knight