My four children love books. Ever since they were born, I’ve read to them. When they were babies, they’d stare at the black and white pictures and I’d speak to them about the images. As toddlers, they would turn the pages and scream in excitement at every turn. As pre-schoolers, they all knew their favourite books by heart. My 10-year-old now reads novels from cover to cover in a night or two. His 8-year-old sister is starting to get into chapter books but Jumpy, who turned 6 yesterday, still sees the daily reading book from school as a chore. When I was offered to review Librio Personalised Books, I jumped at the chance as I saw it as a way to turn a corner and finally instill a love for reading in my little lady.
As soon as I mentioned creating Jumpy’s own character from scratch with her own name and physical characteristics, I could tell I’d grabbed her attention. She watched a short video about Librio Personalised Books and was excited to create a cartoon version of herself on the publishers’ website.
Personalisation at its best
The first thing I loved about Librio Personalised Books was the fact we could choose the language. I could have gone for French or English (there were almost 20 languages to choose from), and we both decided English was best as I wanted to inspire her to read a bit more, and perhaps even read when she’s on her own.
My little lady added her own name for her character, who would be the heroine of The Tree, the Key & Me, then I encouraged her to read the other characteristics available for personalisation. She picked her gender, skin colour, hair length, hair style, hair colour, eye colour and almost ended up with glasses, but we easily removed them. I’ve got to say that the little avatar looked pretty good and you could tell immediately it was a cartoon version of Jumpy.
We also had an option to edit the message written inside the book, and I added a little note about Jumpy’s 6th birthday.
My daughter’s favourite feature was the fact she could immediately see a preview of her book. She was immediately in love with the story and wanted to read it with me straight away, but I encouraged her to wait until she received her paper copy in the post.
You can edit your order
Once you’ve ordered your book, you have ten hours to edit your order. If you decide to change languages, slightly tweak physical characteristics or add a sentence to your personalised message, you can do so within ten hours of placing your order. You can also override it if you’re 100% sure you won’t want to change anything.
I found this option really useful when I purchased another book in Spanish for my Goddaughter. After a few hours, I decided I wanted the message inside the book to be in English, and to be personalised rather than keeping the standard pre-written message, and I was relieved to be able to edit it straight away.
On both occasions I ordered books from Librio, the personalised books arrived within less than a week, and I was pretty impressed with this. The books can also be delivered anywhere in the world. Just bear in mind that since Christmas is now only around the corner, turnaround might not be as swift.
As soon as she opened the cardboard envelope, Jumpy was over the moon and wanted me to read her book. Her younger sister exclaimed, “It’s you!” when she saw the cover and sat on my lap as I was about to start reading. We opted for a soft cover, but you could upgrade to hardback. The illustrations are beautiful and the finish matt, so greasy little hands haven’t damaged our book so far. It really is a timeless bespoke gift.
Being the hero of the story never fails to get my children enthused about a book. The Tree, the Key & Me by Librio didn’t disappoint. The story starts with a little person (boy or girl, according to your personalisation), who finds a key that leads to a magical forest. Disaster has struck and the hero has to find a solution. I found the story lovely and the writing engaging, with no naff references whatsoever so it was as enjoyable to read for me as it was to listen to for the children.
A great way to encourage children to read
My children love the story, even more so because one of them is at the heart of it, solving a mystery. The length of the story is perfect and after a couple of times listening to it, Jumpy started decoding some of the words. That’s a huge success in my books as she’d never done that willingly before.
I love the fact every single Librio personalised book is printed on recycled paper of the highest quality, using a sustainable printer. For every book sold, Librio also endeavour to plant a tree with ‘Trees for the Future.’ Librio even go further than that and donate £1 to literacy charities in countries where the books are bought.
Check our little YouTube video about The Tree, the Key & Me
Fancy a discount?
Use code YAY15 to get 15% discount when you buy two or more books on the Librio website.
You can find Librio here:
Disclosure: We were given a code to order the above book for the purpose of this review and this review is a collaborative post with publisher Librio but all photos and opinions are my own. I bought an extra book and am planning to order another two in French for my nephews.
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