I’m never going to turn down the opportunity to look at a personalised book for Monkey. I don’t remember ever having one myself as a child (cue email from my parents decrying my memory) and I love watching his reaction when he sees a book with his name in it. You all know I’m a sucker for lovely illustrations too, add in a story about friendship, and quite frankly, I’m sold. Message in a Bottle delivers on all points and we love it.
This enchanting paperback personalised picture book is written by Tom Percival and illustrated by Tuire Siiriainen. I’ve been lucky enough to be part of a group who have seen this book develop from drafts through to publishing, and I couldn’t wait to see what the finished article would look like in paper.
The ordering system on the Message in a Bottle website is easy. Fill in your child’s name and address (can be overseas) and select the route for your bottle to travel (only one route at the moment, as this part is still work in progress). You can preview the whole book and therefore see exactly what you’re buying and how the personalisation works. Once you’re happy you proceed to the checkout and add your personalised message. This is your Message in a Bottle (clever), and you can also add a photo. I had something to do with starting Year Two in mind for Monkey, but there are template messages available if you need some inspiration.
Now it was just a case of waiting for our Message in a Bottle book to arrive. We were not disappointed when it landed. The book has a lovely feel to it, it’s a paperback but it’s made of thick paper, so you know it’s going to last being read over and over. It would certainly make a good present.
In the book, we meet Kiki, the Scarlet Hawaiian Honeycreeper who longs for adventure and far away places. Her wishes come true when a bottle floats up onto the seashore.
The message in the bottle was addressed to Monkey, he even recognised it which was great. Now how would Kiki get to deliver the message to Monkey?
Kiki has no idea where to go, so as she meets different animals on her journey, she asks them the way to the town where Monkey lives. Their directions aren’t always particularly helpful.
Kiki travels the world as she tries to deliver the Message in a Bottle, and she meets all sorts of animals along the way. From a sailfish to a crab, a snake and a plover with no sense of direction, Kiki makes friends as she goes. She even comes across some rather mischievous Monkeys, much to my Monkey’s delight.
In the end a wise old owl helps Kiki reach her destination and deliver our personalised message.
It’s such a lovely book, and for £19.95, which includes postage within the EU, it would make a lovely birthday or Christmas present.
Once your child has read their book, they can learn more about the various characters in the book, play quizzes and download activity sheets through Kiki’s Kids Club.
It’s a hit here and we can thoroughly recommend.
I’ve got a 15% reader discount code to share with you – the first 10 readers who order can use this code: 25TY1D
disclosure: we were sent the item mentioned in exchange for an honest review