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Children's Laureate 2015-2017
One of the World Book Day 2015 Authors Chris Riddell was our Author and Illustrator of the Month in December 2010. Click here to find out more.
Chris Riddell, the 2015-2017 UK Children's Laureate, is an accomplished artist and the political cartoonist for the Observer. He has enjoyed great acclaim for his books for children. His books have won a number of major prizes, including the 2001 and 2004 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medals. Goth Girl and the Ghost of a Mouse won the Costa Children's Book Award 2013. His work for Macmillan includes the bestselling Goth Girl books, the Ottoline series, The Emperor of Absurdia, Wendel and the Robots and, with Paul Stewart, the Muddle Earth books, the Scavenger series and the Blobheads series. Chris lives in Brighton with his family.
Read more about Chris Riddell here.
Author photo © Tom Pilston Booktrust
Chris Riddell on John Tenniel : "Before I knew a thing about him, John Tenniel was a hero of mine, or rather, I should say, his white rabbit was. As a child I copied Tenniel’s illustrations from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland obsessively, particularly his drawing of the White Rabbit in waistcoat and frock coat, umbrella tucked under one arm and a pocket watch in paw, a look of suppressed panic in his eye. I loved analysing the shading, intricate lines of cross-hatching, the folds of the sleeve, the tilt of the head, that wide-eyed rabbit stare. Tenniel was one of the reasons I became an illustrator."
As 2017 dawns it’s hard to think of a better book to slip into your pocket than 100 Hugs by Chris Riddell. This neat little hardback contains 100 black and white illustrations by Riddell, a virtuoso of the form, and each one will amaze with its delicacy, skill and fluidity. There’s fun to be had in spotting characters – Pinocchio and Geppetto, Alice and the White Rabbit, Don Quixote and Sancho Panza, the three little pigs – but the real joy comes just from enjoying the beauty and emotion packed into each drawing. It’s a book that will surprise and entertain no matter how many times it’s opened, and one that will leave readers feeling they too have been hugged. ~ Andrea Reece
One of our Books of the Year 2016 | This is the fourth adventure for Ottoline and her best friend Mr Munroe, and it is every bit as enchanting, witty and surprising as the first. The emphasis is on friendship in this story: with her parents still roving the world for interesting items to add to their ever-growing collection of objects, Ottoline holds a dinner party. Guests include the dashing Purple Fox, a new friend, who has introduced Ottoline to some of the city’s most exciting inhabitants and hidden secrets. She’s able to repay him by drawing his attention to something lovely that he’s failed to see. Chris Riddell’s illustrations are as dazzling as ever; it’s worth lingering over every page to revel in the fluency of his line and to look out for the myriad little details. Ottoline is a delight for readers of all ages.
Children’s Laureate Chris Riddell wants children to draw more – in fact he’d like them to do what he does and draw every day. This little book is a wonderful way to encourage us all to do just that. In it he suggests something to draw for every day of the year. Some suggestions are quite specific: draw a family member being attacked by a household appliance; illustrate the word sinister. There are ‘how to’ pages and some very useful and interesting tips, e.g. look at your drawing upside down or in a mirror to see if you’re distorting your pictures; and lots of fun story starters too. Chris Riddell’s enthusiasm for drawing shines through, and you can’t help but feel inspired and ready to take up your pencils. Put this in a stocking or under the tree and you’ll prompt a year’s worth if not a lifetime’s happy scribbling. ~ Andrea Reece
Put on your jingle-jangle socks, and prepare for adventure! Sumptuous illustrations tempt readers into the delightfully absurd world in which dinner is served before lunch and skyfish settle on umbrella trees. The young Emperor is a charming child with a hairy wardrobe monster as an advisor who sets off hunting dragons across a gloriously imagined landscape where anything fantastical can happen. A richly entertaining picture book from a uniquely talented artist at the height of his powers. Shortlisted for the Nestle Children's Award 2006 and for the incredibly prestigious Kate Greenaway Medal 2007. Judges' comment: Riddell makes glorious use of colour in this very interesting and engaging picture book, which despite being extraordinarily detailed is very easy to read. It cleverly gives the reader the impression of moving physically into its landscape, and works on lots of different levels as it turns reality completely on its head. The composition of each page is always well-thought out, and the technique of using small pictures at certain points makes the reader slow down and study carefully. The ambiguous ending stays with you, and allows you to take pleasure from the book over and over again.
Crazy inventions, mad robots and a stupendous battle! Wendel and the Robots is a very funny adventure full of crazy inventions and magnificent robots from award-winning author and illustrator Chris Riddell - with a subtle environmental message. Available in mini hardback edition, it's a perfect gift and an ideal stocking filler.
One of our Books of the Year 2015 - October 2015 Book of the Month Opening Goth Girl and the Wuthering Fright is like opening a treasure box. With its gorgeous metallic edges and golden detail it certainly looks like one, and inside are riches! Chris Riddell seems to surpass himself with each new Goth Girl story, nearly every page features one or more illustrations, each one a small masterpiece of character and drama. As well as the visual invention and wit, there are literary jokes galore. While some of these may go over the heads of young readers, though they‘re likely to colour future readings of classic books, it doesn’t matter because there is so much in the plot to entertain. A host of authors and dogs arrive at Ghastly-Gorm Hall for Lord Goth’s Literary Dog Show, could one of these canine competitors be causing trouble? Ada and her friends investigate. A treat for readers of all ages, and don’t miss the cameo appearance by the author himself, aka Sir Christopher Riddle-of-the Sphinx RA, well-known illustrator of literary dog shows and founder of the Arts and Crufts movement. Sublime! ~ Andrea Reece
Chris Riddell Children's Laureate 2015-2017 Award winning author/ illustrator Chris Riddell weaves another fantastical story about Ottoline and her very special and very hairy friend, Mr. Munroe. Ottoline and Mr. Munroe love solving tricky problems and working out clever plans; they love putting on disguises and travelling across enormous spaces. When Mr. Munroe disappears leaving a clue to his whereabouts written in string wrapped around the sofa, Ottoline has to travel over and under the sea equipped with her Amateur Roving Collectors’ travel pass to find him. Brilliantly told in words and pictures this is a captivating adventure, irresistible to follow. Shortlisted for the prestigious Sheffield Children's Book Award 2011
The first book in Chris Riddell's much-loved Ottoline series. Now in paperback for the first time. A glorious adventure fantasy told in words and loads of Chris Riddell’s fabulous pictures, this tells how Ottoline, who loves solving puzzles, and her friend Mr Munro, a cat with a distinct personality and a number of foibles, set out to resolve the mystery of the lapdogs who are being stolen from all over town. A beautiful book to read or even just to hold. Shortlisted for the prestigious 2008 Kate Greenaway Medal. Winner of the 2007 Nestle Children's Book Prize Gold Award (6-8 category)
A wonderful quirky mystery adventure that follows the story of Miss Ottoline Brown, the inquisitive Mistress of Disguise, and her partner in crime, her hairy and helpful friend, Mr Munroe, first introduced in Ottoline and the Yellow Cat. No secret is ever too scary (eventhough the school is more than a bit scary for Munroe) for the two of them to discover together as well as puzzles to solve. Riddell’s sumptuous illustrations interspersed throughout the text make this ideal for 7-9 year olds as well as younger children whose parents want to read it with their child. It really is a beautiful production of a book – something to truly treasure and return to in years to come. A classic is born. Now available in paperback for the first time. Shortlisted for the prestigious Sheffield Children's Book Award 2009
Shortlisted for the Blue Peter Book Award 2015 Best Story - October 2014 Book of the Month Award-winning author/ illustrator Chris Riddell has created a hilarious sequel to the much-loved Goth Girl and the Ghost of a Mouse and this time it has a topical theme. Ada lives in Ghastly-Gorm Hall, a place where magic rules and nothing is quite what it seems. The Ghastly-Gorm Garden Party is coming soon and the high spot will be the Ghastly-Gorm Bake Off. Celebrity chefs with some very remarkable magic tricks will be competing. But, when a group of vampires swoop down for some tasty action of their own, it looks as if all the plans will be scuppered. Luckily, Ada Goth is a very remarkable girl…Chris Riddell’s bake-off creations are sensationally realised in his wonderful illustrations. ~ Julia Eccleshare
Shortlisted for the 2015 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal - Winner of the Costa Children's Book Award 2013 Bestselling author/illustrator Chris Riddell creates a fantastical world in which Ada Goth, daughter of the strange Lord Goth of Ghastly-Gorm Hall, is growing up. Ada’s mother is dead and her father is very, very strange! Surrounded by a motley crew of servants and many ghosts, Ada’s life is lonely until she meets Ishmael, a ghostly mouse. Soon Ada and Ishmael are off on some very special adventures! Magic and invention pour forth in this splendidly entertaining story which is also packed full of jokes. Chris Riddell’s illustrations bring everything he imagines to life. _______________________ The Costa Book Awards honour some of the most outstanding books of the year written by authors based in the UK and Ireland. The full shortlist for the Children's Book Award is... Alex, the Dog and the Unopenable Door by Ross Montgomery. The Hanged Man Rises by Sarah Naughton Goth Girl: and the Ghost of a Mouse by Chris Riddell Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein Keep up to date with the Costa Book Awards @CostaBookAwards
When Jim kindly allows Mr Underbed to sleep in his bed he is unprepared for all the other night-time visitors who want to share it too!