I Love Books

I Love Books

By Author / Illustrator

Mariajo Ilustrajo


Picture Books

Age range(s)



Frances Lincoln Children's Books








*Winner of the Klaus Flugge Prize for Illustration 2023*   From the award-winning creator of Flooded and Lost comes a magical story about the joy of discovering a connection with books for the very first time.

Find out more about the inspiration behind I Love Books, from author and illustrator, Mariajo Ilustrajo

This brightly illustrated adventure story is perfect for kids who claim to hate reading, as the enchanting narrative opens their eyes to a fantasy world created by words on a page.  In this spellbinding story, we meet a little girl excited for the end of term. No more school! However, she's given the very unreasonable task of reading a whole book over the holidays. A whole book? but she HATES books. Luckily, her sister takes her to the library and says she has just the thing.

Slowly, the little girl is drawn into a world of adventure inside her own imagination, for the very first time. Even the greyscale world starts to fill with colour as she is carried away in the story. A little fennec fox leads her to meet fairytale witches and creatures as they find ingredients to cast a special spell at the end of her book.

The little girl is dismayed to learn that this spell seemingly hasn't changed a thing. However, the little fox points out that she is completely transformed: discovering the power of her imagination has changed her forever.  This charming and engaging picture book shows children how wonderful books can really be, leaving them with a lifelong affinity for reading. Discover adventure on every page and turn I Hate Books into I Love Books.

Read our Q&A with Mariajo Ilustrajo to find out how I Love Books was created.



I Love Books is, just as its title suggests, a celebration of the love of reading, beautifully described by award-winning author and illustrator Mariajo Ilustrajo.  When a girl is horrified to be asked to read a book during the summer, her older sister gives her a book that she had enjoyed and which she might like, too.  At first, the child complains about how long it is before begrudgingly beginning to read it... until she is lost in the story.

This is the true pleasure of reading, becoming so lost in the story that you feel you are living inside its pages, and Mariajo illustrated this by turning the pages from monochrome to glorious colour as the child steps into the lush, wild landscape of her imagination.

This is how we would love to see all children grow as readers, with this love of stories so they get lost inside each book they read.  I would definitely share this book with any child who sees reading as a chore, and encourage them to get lost in its pages, just as much as those who love to read. A gorgeous picture book to be shared with all children, to remind them of the wonder of stories.

Picture book / Reviewed by Elen Green

Suggested Reading Age 5+


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