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A World Book Day Author 2019
Peter Bently grew up in an army family and went to ten different schools. He studied languages at Oxford and worked as a journalist and non-fiction book editor before becoming a children's author when his own two children were very small. He is the author of more than sixty books, including The Great Dog Bottom Swap (illustrated by Mei Matsuoka); Cats Ahoy! (illustrated by Jim Field), which won the Roald Dahl Funny Prize; and King Jack and the Dragon (illustrated by Helen Oxenbury), an American Library Association Notable Book of the Year. It was also shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal.
Of all Hans Christian Andersen’s tales, the Emperor’s New Clothes is the one that feels the most relevant, and naughty. In Peter Bentley’s retelling, King Albert-Horatio-Otto the Third is a dandy with a passion for the most outrageous outfits, changing them throughout the day – he even changes outfits to go to the loo. His obsession and his vanity leave him wide open to being conned by the two ‘fashion designers’ who turn up to make a special suit for his birthday, one so special that only the wisest and cleverest can see it. Whether you are familiar with the story or not, it’s hilarious and oh so satisfying to see the king exposed to all in his birthday suit. Bentley’s rhyming text is as smooth as the king’s bottom, and Claire Powell has great fun illustrating the designers and the king’s courtiers and staff, not to mention those fabulous clothes. This will have everyone in stitches.
‘One day, we found an octopus/ had come to live on top of us.’ Those are the opening lines of this glorious picture book – how could you not want to know what happens next? The octopus itself is unmissable – huge and an eye-catching fluorescent orange colour – slightly non-plussed looking perched atop of a very neat little house. Some of the neighbours are not too welcoming, calling the fire brigade to try and force it off, fortunately with little success because once the children of the house and their friends start playing with the octopus, barriers are broken and the advantages of having an eight-legged chum become clear. Illustrator Steven Lenton rises brilliantly to all the challenges set by Peter Bently’s ingenious rhymes depicting the various ways in which the octopus helps around the house – often eight different activities at a time, plus one very special octo-tastic Christmas tree. Making friends has never been so much fun and it all comes to a wonderfully octopussy conclusion too. Fabulous!
This space shuttle might be crewed by pandas, but in every other respect it’s just like the real thing. Commander Mandy and her crew’s mission is to replace an old satellite. When the crew is strapped in the countdown begins, the last checks are carried out and they prepare for lift-off. As the shuttle soars upwards, Commander Mandy gives the order to release the rocket boosters, then as they fly into space to release the fuel tank. They reach the damaged satellite and a robot arm pulls it in – where there’s a surprise waiting! With bright, child-friendly but detailed illustrations, and clearly labelled diagrams of the shuttle to finish, this fun story is packed with information to satisfy young space and vehicle enthusiasts.
The classic story of the prince and the pauper is given a crafty twist here when young Pignatious sneaks into the palace on the trail of buns and accidently finds himself in the prince’s bedchamber. He thinks it’s splendid and is particularly taken with the box of ‘dressing up clothes’. Kitted out in a lovely pair of blue knickerbockers and a slightly too big wig, pig is mistaken for prince and has a great time ordering everyone around. The error is discovered, but the real prince finds a way to make the situation work to his benefit and his imposter’s. Peter Bently’s rhyming text is a treat to read aloud, while David Roberts has a ball with the illustrations: pig, prince and courtiers look wonderful, and the double page showing the palace guard before and after Pignatious orders them to cartwheel is a joy. This will become a real favourite. ~ Andrea Reece
A delightfully dotty flock of sheep have fun flying, by the winner of the Roald Dahl Funny Prize! Lambert, Eunice, Marty, Mabs and the rest are happily skipping about on their luscious green hillside when something ZOOMs overhead. Being bold, they are soon off on an amazing airborne adventure in some spectacular flying machines. They face terrible danger and potential catastrophe before returning quietly home.
Prize-winning author Peter Bently tells a rollickingly good story in this saga of a shopping trip with a difference. Simon the squirrel is sent down to the shops by his mother to get a few things - including cheese. But when Simon decides that the moon would provide the best cheese he takes off on a bold trip to go shopping on the moon! Ebullient rhyming couplets capture the roller-coaster shopping trip with a difference.
Packed with comical characters, battles, puns and poo, this hilarious new series from Peter Bently, a Roald Dahl Funny Prize winner, will be irresistible to boys and girls aged six to eight years. Knightmare, follows the misadventures of a trainee knight, Cedric Thatchbottom, who serves Sir Percy the Proud – a knight famed throughout the land for his glorious deeds. But life at Castle Bombast isn’t quite what Cedric was expecting – in fact, it’s a total Knightmare! In the first book in the Knightmare series, Life Stinks, Roland the Rotten has challenged Percy the Proud to a duel. But the famous knight refuses to take part because he's lost his lucky underpants. It turns out that Percy is lying to avoid the fight. With his new master's reputation at stake, Cedric finds himself stepping up to the challenge...
April 2014 Book of the Month A delightfully dotty flock of sheep have fun flying, by the winner of the Roald Dahl Funny Prize! Lambert, Eunice, Marty, Mabs and the rest are happily skipping about on their luscious green hillside when something ZOOMs overhead. Being bold, they are soon off on an amazing airborne adventure in some spectacular flying machines. They face terrible danger and potential catastrophe before returning quietly home.
Heart-warming and entertaining, this delightful hymn to the many and varied wonders of parents has some delicious jokes at its core. Sarah Ogilvie’s illustrations show family life splendidly as parents vigorously cover all the ground from mopping up and wiping down, easing social problems and soothing troubled feelings. Boisterous in spirit and visually.
Peter Bently’s rhyming text is woven throughout with Sara Ogilvie’s wonderful illustrations, revealing both the joy frustration of familiar childhood scenarios, and perfectly capturing the parent-child dynamic in a range of funny and heartwarming situations.A real treat for parents and children to share - showing kids that mums and dads have to put up with things too!