Ladybird books hold a special place in the hearts of millions.
Nostalgia for these instantly recognisable pocket-sized hardbacks has seen first editions sell for hundreds on eBay, and now - to celebrate the brand's centenary - fans can purchase Ladybird A Cover Story, a collection of the publisher's most iconic covers.
The first Ladybird book was published in 1915.
The company's motto was 'a Ladybird book for every subject' and they certainly fulfilled this promise, with books covering everything from nursery rhymes and fairy tales to biographies of historical figures and guides to flowers and stamp collecting.
Hundreds of different titles were published and generations of young readers grew up with a Ladybird book by their bedside or in their school book bag.
Ladybird are best known for their 'Key Words Reading Scheme,' which introduced young children to the world of siblings Jane and Peter and their dog, Pat. Peter and Jane's daily activities and games were used as a platform on which to teach basic reading skills.
'Key Words' was launched in 1964 and ran to 36 books. It's estimated that by the end of the Sixties books from the series were in three-quarters of British primary schools and by the mid-Seventies around 34 million had been published.
In her foreword to Ladybird: A Cover Story, Ladybird editor Nicola Bird writes: "The skill of the artists and the simple but effective cover design is such that these detailed pictures still resonate with us today. The books that contain them are often the very first ones that people remember from their own childhoods."
Ladybird A Cover Story has been printed in the same small page size as the Ladybird books themselves. It is published on 2nd October and is available from Ladybird.com for £14.99.
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