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January 2006 | Vol. V - No. 1




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What’s Hot in Pop-Up Books

A Brief Overview of Best-Selling Pop-Up Kids’ Books


Pop-up books have become hot, sophisticated and fun. As if in answer to the rise of CGI movies such as “Lord of the Rings” and “King Kong,” not to mention incredibly visual video games, books have come on strong with immensely complicated pop-ups.

“Things like the “Encyclopedia Prehistorica” and the “Ologies” books take pop-up into another world,” explained Thomas Rolland, manager of Storyland Books in Phoenix. TDmonthly Magazine spoke with more than 30 book experts about what’s the latest and greatest in pop-up books. The following books, they said, are flying off the shelves. (Tween books are also popular: Click here to read more.)




MSRP: $26.99
Age Range: 4 and up
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books



Informational tidbits appear alongside exquisitely designed pop-up constructions in this stunning overview of all things Mesozoic. Each turn of the page features a spectacular paper sculpture of a particular species (e.g., Ankylosaurus or T-Rex) along with a brief paragraph of text. Smaller foldout sections, also incorporating pop-ups, cover additional topics (e.g., Dinosaur Detectives and Mystery Extinction) and introduce other dinosaurs and their characteristics.
— “This is the king of all pop-up books,” stated Marc Rasmusen, manager of Books A Million in Panama City, Fla. “No one can say ‘no’ to it. It’s simply amazing.”
— “This sells like mad,” Becky Aldridge, owner of The Book Kind in Minneapolis. “I’ve sold out twice already. This is a big hit.”
— “Robert Sabuda is a master of the pop-up book,” said Tom Minkowsky, co-owner of The Book Place in New York City. “His work is stunning.”
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 5925      (added 12/13/2005)
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MSRP: $19.99
Age Range: 9 to 12
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books



Third in the successful “Ologies” books (“Dragonology” and “Egyptology”), this is more of an “open doors and pull tabs to reveal things” than a pop-up. Supposedly “discovered” in 1588, this remarkable text by history's most famous wizard, Merlin, is lavishly illustrated by four artists. "Wizardology"’s intricate design even conceals a series of hidden symbols that spell out a secret message when their code is deciphered. There are pull tabs with "magical" effects, attached booklets, a phoenix's feather, a scrap of Fairy Flag and more — all sandwiched between "crystal" gems embedded in the front and rear covers.
— “It’s funny and secret,” said Bob Belkins, owner of Belkins’ Books in Nashville. “Sells very well, and leads kids to the other ‘ologies’ — they want more.”
— “Wondrous book,” espoused Anita Faber, manager of Books, Books, Books in Memphis, Tenn. “The tweens really like it; it seems to speak right to them. Adults get into it, too.“
— “This is flying off the shelf,” reported Danny Sanchez, assistant manager of Seattle’s Barnes & Noble. “I see it staying strong all through 2006.”
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 5926      (added 12/13/2005)
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MSRP: $26.95
Age Range: 4 and up
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books



Robert Sabuda's dazzling pop-ups illustrate a tale that highlights the wonders of a winter landscape. The paper constructions are amazing: an owl soars off the page; a cave lifts and opens to show a family of foxes concealed within; and a waterfall cascades into a rushing river where a bear darts forward to catch the fish that swim above the water's surface. All of the animals are sculpted out of flat white paper, making them stand out against the more colorful woodsy backdrops.
— “Amazing!” gushed Peggy Wilcox, manager of the children’s section of the Boise, Idaho, Barnes & Noble. “I bought four myself for Christmas presents. They’re rethinking the whole idea of children’s books.”
— “The best seller I have, bar none,” responded Douglas Gronsky, owner of The Book Club in Boston. “It’s so beautiful, no one can resist it, young or old.”
— “[It’s] inspired by Sabuda’s childhood,” explained Donna Walcott, owner of Donna’s Books in Panama City Beach, Fla. “The final scene is the most amazing pop-up I’ve ever seen.”
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 5927      (added 12/13/2005)
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MSRP: $19.99
Age Range: 4 and up
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books



Protected and hidden by a society of fairy lovers for more than 80 years, the secret fairy journal of Cicely Mary Barker is available for the first time ever to the public. Learn what really happened during that magical summer of 1920 when Barker discovered the secret world of the Flower Fairies.
— “It’s selling well,” said Monica Delain, manager of The Book Hut in San Antonio. “It rides the coattails of the ‘Ologies’ books. It’s the same sort of thing, but more delicate. More girl than boy.”
— “A beautiful book, which is particularly liked by girls and anyone who believes in fairies,” said Daniel Todd, co-owner of Reader Roundup in Houston.
— “A superbly illustrated book,” remarked Evan Cortez, manager of Rocket Books in Dallas. “It’s fun for any age.”
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 5928      (added 12/13/2005)
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MSRP: $39.95
Age Range: 12 and up
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books



The Architecture Pop-Up Book is a magnificent journey through history. Featuring amazing three-dimensional replications of famous buildings from ancient to modern times, the book showcases artwork, photographs, pop-ups and detailed text of the ancient Egyptian pyramids and Mesopotamian ziggurats; the great constructions of Greece and Rome, such as the Parthenon and the Colosseum; majestic Asian wonders, including the Taj Mahal and the Hagiá Sophiá; Gothic and Neoclassical masterpieces, from Notre Dame and the Florence Duomo to the Houses of Parliament and Monticello; and the work of such important modern architects as Gaudí, Frank Lloyd Wright and Frank Gehry. From a brilliantly elaborate Gothic cathedral nave to a telescoping Chrysler Building skyscraper, the talent and imagination of architects and builders from all eras and from all over the world are displayed and compared here.
— “Very sophisticated,” explained Rebecca Moira, manager of the Book Bridge in Watertown, S.D. “It’s more adult than kid, but kids seem to like it a lot.”
— “Exquisite. The buildings come to life,” said Robert Eckert, assistant manager of Bloom Books in Toledo, Ohio.
— “It’s a kid’s coffee table book,” laughed Sara Simensky, associate professor of children’s studies at University of California, Berkeley. “Children are becoming more sophisticated in the new millennium, and books are following suit.”
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 5929      (added 12/13/2005)
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MSRP: $10.95
Age Range: 3 and up
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books



This is a counting book for the younger set that features nighttime animals, including owls, foxes and other denizens of the moonlit times. Release date: June 2006.
— “I’m looking forward to this book,” said Bobbie Wixen, buyer for Too Many Books in Columbus, Ohio. “Counting books always do well.”
— “Simon & Schuster are always bankable,” explained Amanda Weis, owner of Weis Books in Miami.
— “The illustrator, Robin Koontz, is coming out with two books next year, which always bodes well,” remarked Deborah Mullins-Smith, manager of B-Books, Detroit.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 5930      (added 12/13/2005)
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MSRP: $24.95
Age Range: 4 and up
Gender: Girls
Category: Books



Matthew Reinhart's resplendent retelling of “Cinderella” comes to life with intricate pop-ups, foil, ribbons, acetate and amazing dimensional surprises. The stunning transformation of a pumpkin into a magnificent coach, a rat into a coachman, and Cinderella into a beautiful princess is pure magic.
— “Totally awesome,” burbled Catherine Tollman, co-owner of the Sir Read-A-Lot Book Store, St. Louis. “I had to get one for my inner little girl. It’s better than the movie. And I love the movie.”
— “It’s selling well to girls, particularly the younger ones,” reported Edward Bench, manager of Oklahoma City’s Beautiful Readers bookstore.
— “Matthew Reinhart is very talented, and getting better and better with each book,” pointed out the owner of Indianapolis’ Dots And Dashes, Sandy Beckett.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 5931      (added 12/13/2005)
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MSRP: $14.95
Age Range: 4 and up
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books



In this oversized volume, giant scorpions, a praying mantis and more pop right off the pages, jiggling and wiggling their way to life, brandishing claws, stingers, pincers and more. Bold illustrations and accompanying rhyming text will intrigue budding young naturalists.
— “This has been around, but keeps selling strong,” said Arnold Roth, owner of Midnight Books in Denver.
— “Bugs and boys just go together,” Louise Alderman, co-owner of Alderman & Sons, Salt Lake City, told TDmonthly. “And the pop-ups are bigger than life.”
— “For the younger boys,” explained Bob Marshall, manager of The Book Box in Fargo, N.D. “The older ones go for the grosser bug books, but the younger boys really like the pop-ups.”
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 5932      (added 12/13/2005)
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MSRP: $10.95
Age Range: 3 to 6
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books



Here is the book that started the bugs phenomenon, in mini-form. Inside each bright box are bugs to count from one to 10. Bug fans will laugh and learn as they lift open the boxes and find colorful, comical bugs that pop out, run, eat — and even swim! “How Many Bugs in a Box?” will keep children counting over and over again.
— “Coming out with a mini-edition is a great idea,” said Russell Frazier, Head Honcho at Frazier Books, Cincinnati. “The newest generation gets a chance at this one in a new way.”
— “'How Many Bugs in a Box' always sells well, and I expect the latest version to do the same,” Courtney Vincent-Jardin, owner of Well-Read Books in Baltimore, explained.
— “I expect this to sell well,” commented Manny Braddock, owner of Braddock’s Books in Philadelphia.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 5933      (added 12/13/2005)
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MSRP: $10.99
Age Range: 6 and up
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Books



"I'm Going to Eat You" is full of spooky surprises and creepy creatures that pop up underneath each flap. Illustrated by Jimmy Pickering with cool large-format pop-up flaps throughout, this innovative book even has a sleek die-cut cover.
— “Jim Pickering is a great artist, and this sounds like it’s going to be a good one,” said Richard Pallus, co-owner of The Book Stop in Chicago.
— “This looks great,” responded Becky Thomas, assistant manager at Book Delights in Austin, Texas. “I can’t wait to get them in.”
— Ashok Singh, co-owner of Singh’s Books in Honolulu, thought this would sell well. “Jim Pickering has a very saleable style.”
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 5934      (added 12/13/2005)
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