A wee plea for more original books in Scots and review of Nip Nebs by Susi Briggs, Illustrated by Ruthie Redden

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I love reading and sharing books written in Scots and I believe it is vitally important that we continue to preserve, promote and enjoy the Scots language. It is such an expressive and beautiful language with a wonderfully rich vocabulary and it so enjoyable to read, speak and listen to.

There are lots and lots of brilliant Scots translations of children’s books which I love and have written about before. From David Walliams to JK Rowling to Julia Donaldson there is definitely a growing bank of children’s books in Scots, which shows the demand and interest is there.

However, what I have noticed is a distinct shortage of original children’s books written in Scots and some of the brilliant original books that are out there are out of print. (Some of Susan Rennie’s original  books spring to mind)

Within schools, early years settings and homes, we are crying out for some more original children’s  books in Scots whether that be picture books, short stories, novels, graphic novels or comics.

We need every child to have access to books that reflect the way they speak and use the vocabulary that they use to allow them to engage with and develop a love of books and reading from an early age. We need children to see that their culture and language are valued.

Which brings me on to the beautiful and fabulous Nib Nebs, an original, enchanting story about Jack Frost written in Scots, by Susi Briggs. It is an excellent rhyming story which conjures up images of winter, snow and cosying up with family . The language is so descriptive and the illustrations are utterly exquisite, providing lots of scope for discussion and reenactment. I particularly loved the opportunities to join in with actions – ‘strinkle, strinkle, strinkle’ -making it an ideal book to read with young children. There is also a helpful glossary at the back.

Nip Nebs is a brilliant wee book. It flows beautifully with wonderfully rich vocabulary and is perfectly illustrated. Let’s have more like it!

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