Jim Henson’s Labyrinth: Straight to the Castle and Ghostbusters: Book of Shapes are prime examples of the “there’s also stuff in it for parents” genre. While kids may not be familiar with Jareth or Venkman, they’ll love the interactive features of these board books. Parents will get the added value of reading a kids’ book that features their favorite stories from the ‘80s.
In Jim Henson’s Labyrinth: Straight to the Castle, kids can guide Sarah and her friends through the labyrinth to help track down her little brother, Toby, who has been taken by the Goblin King. This book teaches kids about opposites, directions, and more with pull tabs that reveal more elements of the story. Kids can fine-tune their observational, directional, and fine-motor skills all in one book.
And for those who are worried Labyrinth might be a little too “dark” for their babies, no worries! The colorfully illustrated board book makes all of the characters look very fun! Plus, I’m of the opinion that you’re never too young to learn about Bowie.
Ghostbusters: Book of Shapes takes kids through the shapes found in the classic Ghostbusters films. From the adorable square head of the evil Stay Puft Marshmallow Man to the round wheels of Ecto-1, kids will learn the basic building blocks that make up everything in the world around them. Featuring shapes that are both die-cut into the pages and layered on top of them, this book is a full tactile experience. Kids can trace the shapes layered on or cut out of the adorable illustrations to familiarize themselves with the shapes even further. Plus, since this game challenges kids to find the shapes throughout, they also spruce up their counting and color recognition skills.
Both books are super durable with super thick board, so if little hands drop them (or, you know, throw them), they won’t get too beaten up. The pull tabs and lift-the-flaps on the Labyrinth book are also far from flimsy, and are pretty thick as far as tabs go, meaning kids can play independently since they have something pretty sturdy to hold on to. Of course, at $9.99 each, these books are also very accessible if you’d need to buy a replacement from — well — life with a toddler.
So if you’re looking to restock your bookshelf — or for the perfect gift for a parent in your life — definitely go for these adorable books featuring classic characters. Your 3-year-old might not get how absolutely cool these books are, but they will make your ‘80s-movie-loving heart sing.