It’s 80 years since the stories of Babar the Elephant were first published in the UK. Today there is a whole range of different books featuring this classic character – still adored by millions and shared between generations – so why not mark this milestone by giving a Babar book to your loved ones this Christmas?
Where it all began – Original stories by Jean de Brunhoff, £6.99 each
Five of the original books by Babar’s creator Jean de Brunhoff, are published by Egmont in large format, and feature the French artist’s charming watercolours.
Introduce children to this classic character with The Story of Babar - the first tale about how the orphaned elephant escaped the jungle for the city, then returned to become King of the Elephants. It includes an introduction by the author of Winnie the Pooh, AA Milne, who says “If you have never loved elephants, you will love them now”.
The other titles follow Babar’s subsequent adventures as he builds a city and founds a family: Babar the King, Babar’s Travels and Babar At Home. A beautiful quarter-bound edition of classic Babar tales is also available.
The Babar Collection: classic gift set, £29.99
This beautiful gift set makes an ideal long-lasting present or addition to a family library. It comprises the 5 large format classic stories by Jean de Brunhoff (The Story of Babar, Babar the King, Babar’s Travels and Babar At Home and Babar and Father Christmas) in a hardback book within a slipcase and is available from all good bookshops.
Building on the legacy: Babar stories by Laurent de Brunhoff
After his father’s untimely death at the age of 37, Laurent de Brunhoff has kept the spirit of Babar and his family alive for more than 50 years. Building on his father’s original framework, Laurent has gone on to provide many new adventures for the elephant family while giving them new spirit through his use of line and colour.
Laurent de Brunhoff’s large format picture books, published by Abrams, consist of Babar's Mystery, Babar and the Ghost, Babar's Little Girl, Babar and the Wully Wully, Babar's ABC, Babar's Birthday Surprise, Babar's Gallery, Babar's World Tour, Babar Visits Another Planet and Babar's Celesteville Games and are available from all good bookshops, priced £5.99.