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John Yeoman is an English writer. Quentin Blake's friend and colleague, he has written many amusing stories for him to illustrate.
December 2017 Book of the Month A series of twelve short, funny poems, one for every month of the year, written with brio by John Yeoman and illustrated by Quentin Blake with all his characteristic vitality and joie de vivre, make this a book to treasure all year round. Indeed, it’s rare to find books in which the words and pictures work together as perfectly as they do here: not a word is wasted, each poem creates a real and vivid sense of the month in questions and builds up with seemingly effortless economy to a comic or surprise final couplet. Illustrations too contain only what is absolutely necessary to capture the action but still fizz with character, personality and humour. A must-have. ~ Andrea Reece
Victorian London, splendidly imagined by Quentin Blake with typical wit and vitality, is the setting for this very entertaining story. When hard times hit the Priddy family the children Vicky and Bertie know just what to do: they head off to make their fortune with the clever little horse bought at auction and amazing everyone with its cleverness ever since. It takes seconds for theatrical impresario Mr Crumbles to recognise the little horse as a dramatic genius and fame and fortune do indeed follow, as well as a meeting with the queen! A wildly imaginative story, delightfully told - adults will spot the various references to Dickens throughout. ~ Andrea Reece
Former Children’s Laureate Quentin Blake has teamed up with story teller John Yeoman to create a wonderfully inventive story about how birds came to fly. Before birds could fly, they just hurried into people’s houses for shelter. When the Fflyte family become sick of having birds under their feet all the time, Mr Fflyte invents a flying bicycle and encourages the birds to fly too by equipping them with a balloon each. Soon the air is full of feathers, the house is empty and everyone is happy...
Wonderful animal tales from around the world are vividly brought to life in these entertaining stories which are gloriously brought to life in Quentin Blake’s illustrations. There are magical monkeys, a daring tortoise, a tricksy locust who outsmarts a coyote and many more besides. The essence of the different animals and the celebration of their different attributes is a delight.
Learning to count doesn’t get more delightful than this. Barnaby sits off on a simple journey on his raft. All he has to do is to pick up some passengers along the way…What can possibly go wrong? Clever Barnaby is inventive in how he can keep them apart. One cat, two mice, three stiff schoolmistresses and an increasing host of other animals later it all gets a bit chaotic but Barnaby reaches his destination safely and hands over his unusual cargo. A witty, perfectly shaped building story with glorious illustrations.
Quentin Blake’s award winning picture books have been delighting readers for decades. In this classic story of two friends, Beatrice the ewe and Vanessa the nanny-goat set off from the field where they have spent their days nattering and chomping in search of an adventure. How these two harmless old creatures manage to frighten off a pack of wolves and a great big brown bear with the help of a few things in a capacious bag and a lot of ingenuity is a particular gem.
Prize-winning illustrator Quentin Blake’s stunning illustrations bring great pathos to this touching story of how two lonely birds make a hash of communicating. Back and forth across the swamp the two leggy birds go as Crane and Heron make offers to each others but never seem to find the moment when both are agreed on what they want. Much pain, confusion and downright surprise is brilliantly conveyed in Quentin Blake’s soft-palette illustrations which offer no solutions leaving children the opportunity to think how this will resolve.
The grumpy miller is having mouse trouble, so he buys himself a large tabby cat. Fortunately for the mice, the cat is too unfit to catch even a single mouse. But when the miller loses his temper and threatens to drown the poor tabby, the mice decide they must intervene, as they have grown surprisingly fond of him...
Best-loved illustrator Quentin Blake brings to life this lyrical, watery story. Pig, squirrel, hedgehog and hen are excited to join bear for his water picnic. They all love the quiet of the lake until they meet the noisy frogs! Searching for greater peace, bear and his friends float on but, it turns out that they need the frogs after all! If you enjoy Quentin Blakes’ hallmark illustrations then do check out his various other titles that have recently been reissued.
Celebrate liberation! Forced to wash grubby hankies, horrid socks and ghastly towels by their skinflint boss, seven oppressed washerwomen go on strike and, getting aboard a goat cart, set out to have fun. Seven woodcutters think they’ll get the better of them but they are easily outwitted by the ebullient and determined washerwomen. All ends happily as washerwomen and woodcutters settle down to married bliss, which includes making choices about washing and woodcutting. A wonderful treat for young and old alike and a real classic that should sit proudly on every nursery bookshelf.
It is nearly the summer holidays and Billy Dexter and his classmates are trying to finish their wicker baskets. Their craft teacher, Miss Beddows, is so appalled by Billy's efforts that she keeps him in after class for a pep talk. `As long as you set your mind on something and try hard enough, there's nothing you can't do.' Billy loves the idea that he can do anything, but his friends, Melanie and Paul, don't agree. `What about growing horns?' suggests Melanie. It is a challenge Billy has to accept. Brimming with humour and written in John Yeoman's matter-of-fact style, this story from 1961 is vividly illustrated with Quentin Blake's inimitable drawings. It was the second in a long line of collaborations between John Yeoman and Quentin Blake, following soon after their first, A Drink of Water.
Who would believe it could be so hard to get a drink of water? And to find it at last, cool and fresh but out of reach - that was a problem indeed for a young monkey. But luckily for him, he had an observant and logical mind. This was more than could be said for the dog that made friends with the bear, or the vain jackdaw; and as for the silly ewe and the nanny goat - well, one might call it guile or one might call it simplicity that kept the wolves at bay. First published in 1960, this charming book of animal fables was the first children's book either Quentin Blake or John Yeoman ever published. It exudes all the warmth and wit we have come to expect of their collaborations.