Ladybirds have complained that Ladybird Books are written in such a way that they are beyond the grasp of most ladybirds.
'Most Coccinellidae, to give us our proper name, have very low reading ages indeed, as we spend most of our time catching aphids and experiencing anxiety attacks about the safety of our young, while we are hard at work helping in the garden' said a spokesbug. 'That doesn't mean we are not interested in London Buses, Things to do At Home and Fun at the Seaside. But all these titles, enticingly but misleadingly called Ladybird books, are in fact paradoxically too difficult for most Ladybirds to read unaided. Moreover, the art work is generally too big, from a Ladybird point of view, to be proeprly appreciated. WE would like new editions to be tinier, with simpler text.'
In a statement Ladybird publisher Jeanette Smythe explained: 'Our core audience is not Ladybirds. The Ladybird book of Ladybirds, despite the suggestion of an almost circular self-reference in the title, was indeed a critical success with an eponymous readership of coleoptera, but that was an unintended consequence exploited by clever marketing.
That said, we have no intention of dumbing down. In fact the new edition of Mick the Naughty Puppy has a 10% increase in polysyllables, in line with renewed educational reading aspirations. Ladybirds should seek out appropriate reading matter elsewhere, and not in Ladybird Books'