You are currently viewing Are Prestel Children Books a Great Holiday Gift? (2 Reviews)
Photo of two of Prestels's illustrated children books.

This post is a review of Prestel children books recently published by Prestel Publishing: “Hair: From Moptops to Mohicans, Afros to Cornrows” by Katja Spitzer, and “I Am Coco: The Life of Coco Chanel” by Isabel Pin. I assessed these books based on my more than 30 years of experience in education. Read the review to decide whether one or both of these educational children books would make a great holiday gift for your grandkids, kids or other little ones on your holiday gift list.

 

Contents
  1. Who Is Prestel Publishing?
  2. Review of Katja Spitzer’s “Hair: From Moptops to Mohicans, Afros to Cornrows”
    • What I like about Katja Spitzer’s Children Book
  3. Review of Isabel Pin’s “I Am Coco: The Life of Coco Chanel”
  4. What I like about Isabel Pin’s Children Book
  5. Where to Buy Prestel Educational, Illustrated Children Books?
  6. Review of Prestel Children Books in a Nutshell

 

Disclosure: The children books are Media copies provided by Media Masters Publicity. I wrote the review myself. All opinions are my own and 100% honest. The authors, Media Masters Publicity, and the publisher did not endorse this review.

Disclaimer: Note that I will not receive any commission from the sales of these books.

 

Who Is Prestel Publishing?

Prestel is a leading publisher in the fields of art, photography, architecture, design, lifestyle, and illustrated children books. The company was founded in 1924, and has headquarters in München, London, and New York. Their special focus is on illustrated books with over 500 English titles in print. They compensate CO2 emissions related to the publication by supporting afforestation of Tropical rain forest in Brazil via climate partners.

 

 

Review of Katja Spitzer‘s “Hair: From Moptops to Mohicans, Afros to Cornrows”

Katja Spitzer‘s text addresses kids age 5 to 7, and hence, comes as a hardcover. It encompasses 40 pages with beautiful, slightly exaggerated illustrations of hair styles from all over the world. These exaggerations serve to support her the points of her narrative.

She starts with a brief history of hair styles. This discussion includes the impacts of hair styles on the lifestyle of their wearer as well as cultural, societal, and religious habits related to hair. The author addresses how humankind changed the appearance of their hair by straightening, curling, powdering, cutting, and wearing hair accessories.

Furthermore, the book explains age-appropriately why hair grows, why it has a certain texture or color, and why some men turn bald. Finally, a section points out the differences between fur, hair, and whiskers.

 

2 examples of illustrations in the children book by Katja Spitzer
Two examples of the illustrations in Katja Spitzer’s “Hair”.

 

 

What I like about Katja Spitzer‘s Children Book

I love that the author describes the different terms of hair styles in form of illustrations rather than becoming wordy. Consequently, the historic, societal, cultural, and biological facts stand in the focus of the education. These points are well researched, and presented at the appropriate level. The book is well balanced with respect to diversity of human cultures and ethnic backgrounds.

At age 5 to 7, I would have loved reading this book. As an aunt, my younger me would have bought it for my niece when she was that age. Because of the great educational value, I have no hesitation to recommend this children book to my family and friends.

Look inside Katja Spitzer‘s “Hair: From Moptops to Mohicans, Afros to Cornrows“.

 

Review of Isabel Pin‘s “I Am Coco: The Life of Coco Chanel”

This book has a hardcover as well. Given that it addresses kids age 7-9, its pages and print are smaller than those of the book for younger kiddos (cf. featured photo). On 88 pages, Isabel Pin tells the life, career, and comeback of Gabrielle Chanel aka Coco Chanel to her death in 1971. The author starts with Chanel’s childhood in a poor family background, being orphaned at age 12, and learning to sew in a convent school. Next the author covers how Coco Chanel became a successful entrepreneur, leading fashion designer, and powerful donor. Probably, to keep the book age-appropriate, the author leaves out Mademoiselle’s “private life” except for mentioning that mademoiselle’s great love “Boy” died in a car accident.

Throughout the book, Isabel Pin placed simple, but detailed illustrations that support telling the story. Some of them teach the readers to recognize iconic Chanel designs, her logo, and Chanel-inspired clothing. There is enough historical background to understand why Coco Chanel‘s hats, corset-freeing clothes, little black dress, and her impeccable suit revolutionized fashion, and became today’s classics.

 

illustrations by Isabel Pin featuring Coco Chanel iconic designs
Examples of illustration featuring Coco Chanel’s iconic designs. Other illustrations feature life scenes like living in a convent, sewing in the atelier, going out, etc.

 

 

What I like about Isabel Pin‘s Children Book

Isabel Pin well features how a freethinking young woman can take control of her life and even empower other women. This biography educated young readers about societal and fashion history in an entertaining way. It is an inspiration to encourage them to pursue their own dreams. Consequently, there is also motivational values. For all these reasons, I have no hesitation to recommend this children book to my family and friends as a great read for kids age 7-9.

Look inside “I Am Coco: The Life of Coco Chanel“.

 

 

Review of Prestel Children Books in a Nutshell

Both books are affordable, great gifts for kids because they facilitate learning by entertaining and inspiring illustrated stories. Buy them now when you have kiddos of this age range on your gift list.

 

Where to Buy Prestel Educational, Illustrated Children Books?

You can buy Katja Spitzer‘s “Hair: From Moptops to Mohicans, Afros to Cornrows” on Amazon for $14.95, on Blackwell for £14.68, Bookshop, Hive, or Waterstones.

“I Am Coco: The Life of Coco Chanel” by Isabel Pin on Amazon UK for £12.99, on Blackwells for £16.01, and at Barnes and Nobles for $17.95.

 

Pro tip: Compare the shipping costs of these sellers. The lower prizes may not actually be cheaper, because some of the higher prizes include “free shipping”.

 

Photo: N. Mölders

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