Everybody knows that penguins belong at the South Pole and polar bears live at the North Pole, but what would happen if, one day, a family of picnicking penguins accidentally got lost? When the hapless Pilchard-Brown family finds themselves at completely the wrong pole, they need Mr White, the friendly polar bear, to guide them all the way home. Their journey takes them all around the world from New York to Venice to Sydney until, finally, they reach the South Pole . . . and Mr White finds a new home in the heart of the family too.
The Bog Baby
"Two girls sneak out to the magic pond in Bluebell Wood and come home with a bog baby - a blue, toadlike blob in Millward's delicately drawn illustrations, with stubby wings and an amiable smile. When, despite plenty of TLC, the girls' small treasure eventually turns pale and ill, along comes Mum to remind them that bog babies are wild things that are not suited to eating cake crumbs or sleeping in a margarine tub. Time to set it free again. Imaginitively adding a touch of magic to an insight that all budding naturalists might take to heart, this attractive picture book closes with a years-later view of the pond teeming with the bog baby's offspring, plus a form on which children can record their own bog baby observations."
"When a tadpole meets a caterpillar, they fall in love. He is her shiny black pearl, she is his beautiful rainbow. As lovers do, she makes him promise never to change, but, of course, he does. When the tadpole grows a tail, then legs, then arms, the caterpillar's heart breaks and she cries herself into a chrysalis. What happens next, when the frog meets the butterfly, is another matter entirely."
Who's in the Loo?
"Jeanne Willis is best known for her exuberant, witty picture books with the illustrator Tony Ross, and this, the first to be illustrated by Adrian Reynolds, is as cheeky as ever.
Two jolly children are waiting in a long queue for the loos. What, they wonder, could be holding things up? And so the rhyme sets off, going from one silly situation to the next. Is it a 'crocodile clipping its nails'? Or a 'school of skunks washing their tails'? 'Is it a tiger who needed a tiddle?/A wandering wombat who wanted a widdle?'
This funny story and bold drawings will appeal to children as young as two."
The First Slodge
Once upon a slime, there was a Slodge. The first Slodge in the universe. She saw the first moon and stars, the first fruits and flowers. "Mine, all mine!" she said. But what if there was not just one Slodge ...but two? A wonderfully original and witty picture book from the award-winning author, Jeanne Willis (Who's in the Loo? and The Bog Baby). This humorous exploration of sharing and friendship carries an important message: that the world belongs to everyone. Captivating illustrations from Jenni Desmond (Red Cat, Blue Cat) will delight adults and children alike. A book to share and treasure.
One little girl dreams of being a star. But whether it's finding Mum's lost wedding ring or winning the fancy-dress prize, her big sister always shines brighter. Yet for her grandad she is a star and, as he dries her eyes and they both gaze up at the night sky, he tells a story, the story of the beginning of the world.
Everything and everyone is made of stardust, and we all shine in different ways. It's a lesson this little girl will never forget ...and one day her dream comes true, and she finally realises her ambition to become an astronaut and fly up to the stars.
I'm in Charge!
This romping rhyming story from award-winning author Jeanne Willis is all about a little rhino who likes to make the rules! When Rhino finds a tree bursting with fruit, he isn't about to share it with anyone - after all, he's in charge round here! But it looks like things are about to change...
"Without being condescending or preachy, the words, pictures and design of this very simple picture book show that a physically disabled child is 'just like me, just like you'. Only in the very last page do we discover that Susan uses a wheelchair. Before that, the simple rhyming words and active crayon-and-pencil pictures show her in a succession of ordinary scenarios that every pre-schooler will recognise. Susan laughs. Susan sings. Susan's good. Susan's bad. She's mad. She's shy. She swims. She swings. She sulks. She's scared. The show and tell works. Children will enjoy seeing their common feelings and experiences. They'll be surprised by that wheelchair at the end; and they'll accept their connection with the child who they've come to know is 'just like me'."
Meet Wild Child!
She's spirited and curious. She's fearless and free. She lives alone in a mystical, prehistoric world - the last child in a dramatic landscape, where anything could happen.
Follow her through her day as she explores her world from the foot of the mountain to the heart of the wood; while she runs with the rabbits and swims with the fish - but beware of the grown-ups and sensible shoes!
Join the magic and unleash the wild child in YOU!
"Adult mayflies have very short lives. Jeanne Willis's Mayfly's first day on earth is also her last. During her short span, Mayfly lves a full and intensely happy life - 'This isn't any old day. This is the Best of days. She lives for each moment.' She hears the 'crack of dawn', watches buds open, eggs hatch, babies born. She feels the sun's warmth, the 'kiss of summer rain', experiences a rainbow. Breezes blow, bells chime, birds sing; she 'dances to the music of the universe'. Then, in 'the best of nights', she lays her eggs, blesses her offspring-to-be, and sinks down to watch 'the stars go out'. She has lived a wonderful life. Twenty-four pages of text and pictures that disclose a spectrum of emotions and proclaim an overwhelming joi de vivre; a perfect combination of succinct prose and with warm, delicately coloured illustrations. A gem".
The Monster Bed
"The tables are turned in this amusing picture book about Dennis, a baby monster who baulks at being tucked in (even with the lights on and a teddy to cuddle) because, he wails, 'the humans will get him'. Mama Monster tries to cajole him with reassurances that humans are only make believe, but Dennis knows better and hides under his bed.
The fun picks up as a naughty little human playing hooky wanders into the monster family's cave and decides to nap on Dennis's bed. Imagine the fright when they discover each other!
Jeanne Willis tells the story in witty verse and it is tough to decide whether the tale or the illustrations - populated with familiar characters borrowed from Maurice Sendak's much acclaimed 'Where the Wild Things Are' - are the best part of the book. So just call it a draw and enjoy." - Books For Your Children: Spring 1987
Just thought I’d send you a message as my mum and myself recently got monster bed tattoos! It was my favourite book when I was little and I can still remember it line for line. I got Dennis tattooed and my mum got Dennis’ mum. Here’s mine:"
Dr. Xargle's Book of Earth Relations
Dr Xargle is teaching his class of young aliens all about Earthlets and theif families. 'They have identical earflaps and hooter shapes,' he tells them. A guaranteed hit with humans everywhere this is an hysterically funny book by the award-winning authors behind the Dr Xargle series.
Dr. Xargle's Book of Earth Weather
How to successfully cope with Weather is the topic of Dr Xargle's latest lesson about the quirks and quandaries of life on Planet Earth. And when class is over, the learned alien takes his students on an interstellar field trip to experience the crazy climate firsthand!
The Boy Who Lost His Bellybutton
One day a little boy loses his bellybutton, so he goes into the jungle to find it. Along the way he asks all the animals that he meets whether they have seen his bellybutton, and discovers that all of them - from zebras to warthogs - have a bellybutton of some description. When he sees the crocodile's, however, he realises that there is something very familiar about it. Readers will be on tenterhooks until the very last page: can the missing navel be retrieved without harm to the boy?
What are Little Girls Made of? Nursery Rhymes for Femenist Times
"Without being at all obvious this is a fun take on the well-worn nursery rhymes of old. It's fun and jolly and totally on point" - Angels and Urchins Parenting Magazine
“In What Are Little Girls Made Of? by Jeanne Willis and Isabelle Follath (Nosy Crow, £9.99) did Georgie Porgie kiss the girl and make her cry? No, she made him cry for trying to kiss her in the first place. These are nursery rhymes as you have never heard them before – the magnificent Jeanne Willis has rewritten many of the old classics for our current times and this time the girls take charge: Little Miss Muffet makes friends with the spider, Jill mends Jack, and Little Bo-Peep rescues her sheep. Ingenious and empowering, these are a must-read for girls and boys.” - The Scotsman
When five-year-old orphan Heidi is sent to live in the Swiss Alps with grumpy Grandpa, the rest of the village take pity on her. But Heidi soon discovers that her grandpa is gentle and kind behind his scowl, and she loves her new life running wild in the mountains with the goats, the flowers and her best friend Peter.
Field Trip to the Moon
Get ready for blast-off on an adventure to the moon! With stunning original artwork by John Hare and charming text by bestselling and award-winning author Jeanne Willis, Field Trip to the Moon is a wonderfully witty story about exploration, creativity and making friends in the most unlikely places.
Spike: The Hedgehog Who Lost His Prickles
Spike, a little hedgehog, has always had impressive prickles. But one morning, after a particularly scary dream, he wakes up completely bare! Oh no! Feeling very embarrassed, he goes in search of something to cover himself, from a paper lampshade to a tea cup to a very stinky sock. But nothing stops the other animals giggling at him. Poor Spike! Then he discovers a big bunch of balloons, which takes him across the world and ends in a very satisfying POP! and a very prickly party.
"Celebrating acceptance and being who you really are, this joyful story is about Cliff, the crocodile who wants to wear a dress.
When the hyenas laugh at Cliff, he pretends he's dressing up for a play. But no play exists! Luckily his friend Freddy comes to the rescue and creates a show for Cliff to star in. But what will his dad say when he sees him?
A funny story about inclusion and supporting your friends and family."
The T-Rex Who Lost His Specs
Meet the accident-prone T-Rex. First he loses his glasses, then he has one disaster after another: he can't tell his breakfast toast from a slipper, then he mistakes a prehistoric owl for his bath towel!
"A laugh-out-loud tale from legendary picture book duo Willis and Ross."
There's No Such Thing as a Snappenpoop
Little Brother wants to join in the fun with his sibling, but Big Brother won’t let him play.
“Fetch me a Snappenpoop!” says Big Brother. “Then you can play . . .” But everybody knows there’s no such thing as a Snappenpoop . . . or IS there?
A wonderfully unique story from award-winning author Jeanne Willis (The Bog Baby, The First Slodge). Packed with magical creatures and bossy siblings, this delightfully wicked cautionary tale is set to become a children’s favourite. With stunning artwork from debut picture book illustrator Matt Saunders.
One night Chick hops onto the farmer's house and has a browse on his computer - CLICK - soon she's shopping online for the whole farm! But when she arranges to meet up with a friend she's made online, she discovers all is not as it seems...
Little Red Riding Hood for the iPad generation, this is the perfect book for teaching children how to stay safe online.
Grill Pan Eddy
"How wonderful to have a story with a mouse in it that nowhere shows a female standing on a chair... Instead, the audacious Grill Pan Eddy convinces the family whose home he adopts that, since they can't get rid of him, they might as well accept that his presence is a blessing. And they do, mourning him long and loud when he finally dies. Eddy skis down the butter, sees off the cat. Can we be convinced that he is really as much a friend as an enemy? You bet, at least for the space of Jeanne Willis's ebullient story and Tony Ross's humorous illustrations."
I Want to Be a Cowgirl
"From the window of a high-rise city flat, a small girl imagines a very different view, and dreams of a very different life. But does it all have to be fantasy? The Big City meets the Wild, Wild West in Jeanne Willis's lyrical text, accompanied once again by magical illustrations from Tony Ross. Internationally recognised as '...one of the classic picture book partnerships'." - Carousel
Billy Goat and his best friend Cyril are messing about with the farmer's mobile phone, taking selfies and playing games... until they find the number for a troll. Their Grandpa Gruff says trolls are bad, so Billy and Cyril decide to get their own back by sending mean messages. After all, trolls really do stink! Don't they?
I Hate School
Honor Brown cannot find a good word to say about her school despite much prompting. She insists that her teacher is a warty toad, the water tray has killer sharks in it, and even her friends are loathsome. But when the time comes to move on to 'Big School', she sits in the corner and sobs!
The Rascally Cake
"The Rascally Cake is wonderfully horrid. Top juniors will love it! The text describes revolting meals such as 'brown rat roast', while the illustrations show meals trying to escape. But the fun really starts when Rufus decides to make a Christmas cake. All the horrible ingredients mixed together become a live cake monster which chases Rufus and takes a bite out of him. I won't spoil the ending for you, but Rufus does survive, if only as a shadow of his former self, and the last illustration of him contrasts dramatically with the first in the book. The story, which is in rhyme, is great fun and the illustrations support the text well, with horrible creepy-crawlies, eyes of which watch Rufus, and a green theme for added atmosphere!" - Wendy Timothy
"A must for every bedroom bookshelf. Jeanne Willis tells the story of Sloth's very very VERY slow progress down his very very VERY tall tree to his birthday party in rhyming couplets that trip off the tongue: 'Three steps forward, Three steps back, Sloth clicked his claws with a clickety-clack.' It's an utterly brilliant read aloud - and Tony Ross's pictures are, as always, wildly funny."
The Wind in the Wallows
"This is a hilarious picture book for any pre-schooler who is curiously obsessed with bodily functions. On a peaceful summer day, the river life is disturbed by a Bang! Pop! Poop! Parp! and left with a terrible smell. Each animal accuses the next until they work together to find out who the real culprit is. The language is advanced and beautifully descriptive which will enhance vocabulary. The illustrations are full of humour with their cartoon-like appearance. This is a successfully humourous picture book about a silly subject but with challenging language."
Have you heard the tale of Felicity Finch who was prone to pinch?
Or the one about Vince the Mince, the vegetarian dog who took his sprouts far too seriously...
This hilarious collection offers a grisly mix of gruesome cautionary verses, in which assorted characters meet the stickiest of ends!
A monkey realises that his tastes are very different from his relatives, the apes, so he wanders off to find a new way of life. He discovers he can walk upright, gives himself a (very) close shave, and takes up residence in a cave. He is lonely on his own but he amuses himself inventing things like words and wheels and by putting up a shelf, until a companion lady ape comes by. This hilarious take on the evolution theory told in the usual effortlessly energetic combination of verse and pictures we have come to expect from this classic picture book partnership!
The Pet Person
"Rex the dog wants a pet person for his birthday. His family is against it because people, they say, are horrible, smelly and impossible to train. Find out whether Rex gets his pet person in this zany, hilarious book from Jeanne Willis and Tony Ross, creators of the hugely successful 'Dr Xargle' series"
The Long Blue Blazer
"A traveller from a parallel universe is the twist in Jeanne Willis and Susan Varley's truly delightful book. Wilson, the new boy in class, absolutely refuses to take off his odd, outsize jacket. Varley's poignant illustrations show the wee Wilson even attempting to do PE in his bulky blue blazer. When I saw her drawing of the lad standing outside the school in the snow in that charity-shop get-up, no one coming to collect him, a tear sprang to my hard-boiled old eyes. It's alright though, his blue-blazered mum beams down to get him in the end. Destined to become a classic (four to six)." - The Guardian: December 1987
There's an Ouch in my Pouch!
"Willaby Wallaby is throwing a wobbly... He's quite determined he still needs a pouch to live in, but suddenly it's just too knobbly, wodgy, wedgy and wriggly and so he jumps out. His grumpiness leads him to seek out alternatives, but those all prove to be just as uncomfortable, or even dangerous, so eventually he runs back to mum, only to discover it's a new little sister who made the pouch seem so ouch!
Jeanne Willis revels in the language of her rhyming story - alliteration, onomatopaia, assonance - it's all there to make a wonderful story to join in with, or relish reading aloud. Large bright, funny illustrations enhance this engaging aid to learning all about becoming an older sibling."
"Visiting Grandpa is boring for the young Pups. He just goes on about the past; the glorious olden days made all the more glorious in his fading memories. But just when the Young Pups have written him off, Grandpa dazzles them with some astonishing skills perfected in his youth. Grandpa is a force to be reckoned with. He is amazing, remarkable and spectacular. In fact, he can teach the Young Pups some new tricks. Tony Ross's engaging illustrations reveal Grandpa's doggy skills in this warm-hearted story about not underestimating your grand-parents which all generations will enjoy."
"Misery Moo of the title is a miserable old cow. She moans her way through life. despite the best efforts of her little friend, a lamb. Finally, the lamb decides never to see the cow again because he cannot bear to see his friend being so upset and sad. The cow goes in search of and finds a very unhappy lamb. Lamb explains that he cannot be happy while his friend is unhappy and is rewarded with 'the biggest, sunniest smile in the whole, wide, wonderful world'. And indeed it is.
This heartwarming story explores, with sensitivity and insight, what it means to have a friend. Tony Ross is able to crystallise emotions through his evocative use of line. He has helped to produce a book of much visual charm, a story that has both humour and tenderness. Highly recommended."
Do Little Mermaids Wet Their Beds?
"It is rare for enuresis to be the subject of a picture book - even rarer that the book should be such an enchanting one. Cecilia is a clever four-year-old but she has one problem: every morning her bed is wet. In a dream one night she meets a little mermaid who, after a magical playtime, convinces Cecelia that she will soon be dry. After all, the little mermaid's bed is always wet, being under the sea. Besides, the Queen probably wet her throne when she was only four! Cecelia wakes up dry on the morning after her adventures. Wonderfully dainty, watery, watercolour illustrations are an excellent match for the melodic rhymes. The bed-wetting facts are told in small print, rather like a printed whisper. One can only wish that other "problem" books for children had the same originality and charm."
"Every child loves shopping for new shoes. But it's not always easy to find exactly the right ones. But when you do...
Jeanne Willis is well-known and much loved for her child's-eye view on everyday matters. This bouyant text will charm many of her fans and Margaret Chamberlain's illustrations will add to their delight."
"Bat - being the sort of lady who hangs upside-down - sees the world differently from most people. For example, in her eyes, the grass grows above and the sky hangs below. All the other wild young animals decide she's totally bonkers until Wise Owl suggests that the other animals try seeing things from Bat's viewpoint. Suddenly they realise that truth has many faces, depending on which way you look at it.
An entertaining and thought-provoking story, with simple text and cartoon-style pictures full of life and humour".
The Pink Hare
"Jeanne Willis is the nearest we have today to Hilaire Belloc, and one of the few children's authors who can write in verse without forcing it. The Pink Hare is the story of an Arctic hare who refuses to don camouflage for the winter and determines to dress entirely in pink. Laughed at by lemmings, chased for hare soup by polar bears, she soon learns the value of dressing to conform. Sadly, four-to six-year-olds are unlikely to see parallels in their own bizarre dress sense." - Sunday Telegraph
The Boy Who Was Brought Up By Teddy Bears
Three teddy bears find a baby boy in the forest, apparently all alone, and kind-heartedly take him home. But they don't know how to bring up a boy, so he grows up learning how to be a teddy bear instead. 'He walked like a Teddy. He growled like a Teddy. He could swivel his legs all the way round...almost.' Then on his fourth birthday his mother comes to the cottage looking for him and he learns that boys and bears have something in common. They love being cuddled - and his mother knows just how to do it!
"This tender story will leave readers speechless. It is sure to be a favourite." - Baby Magazine
"This is the brilliantly extravagant and compelling story o f the little mouse who loses her baby. In the course of her search for him, she encounters a vast King Kong of a gorilla from whom she flees in panic - to China, to America, to Australia, to the Arctic. It is in her last port of refuge that she learns that the Killer Gorilla has, in fact, merely been on a mission of mercy, seeking not to devour her but to return her child whom he had found way back in the forest where the tale began. His next task is to ensure the safe return of both mother and child.
There is, in this remarkable book, the same fun, largeness of life and delight in language and illustrations that has marked the earlier collaborations of Jeanne Willis and Tony Ross. Their new offering will lead again to thrills and smiles amongst many 5 to 8-year-olds - and probably well beyond that early phase."
"Another great collaboration by this pair, who create much visual and verbal humour from the story of a very lazy horse. The mare is passed from hand to hand, as she is dozy and unresponsive - until she is passed to the butcher! This spurs her into action, leading to a very satisfying ending. The text and image complement each other perfectly, and the characters Ross creates are hilarious, from the little girl in her pony club garb, to the circus ringmaster. This is a very enjoyable picture book".
Emily Peppermint's Toy School
It's the first day of term at Toy School and teacher Emily Peppermint has a new class all ready to learn how to be perfect toys. The first lesson is falling out of a pram, but the class members are about to get a bit more practice than they bargained for... It's a good job Emily Peppermint and her trusty classroom assistant Rose are there to save the day! Master picture book creators Jeanne Willis and Vanessa Cabban collaborate for the first time in this funny, big-hearted new story for young children.
"The problems created by noise - more and more and louder and louder noise, have been tackled by Jeanne Willis and Tony Ross in their new book Shhh!. With a huge variety of words and sounds and colours and pictures, they show how the thoughts and news and opinions of the small, unimportant people are lost in the continuing hubbub - and make a plea for peace and quiet.
'Imagine if everyone in the world Sat still and listened just like that One, two, three Shhhhhhh!
There would be Peace on Earth.....'"
The Tale of Mucky Mabel
"This could almost be a picture book variation in the Hilaire Belloc tradition - by the same artist who gave us The Tale Of Georgie Grub (who hated keeping clean) we have Mucky Mabel - a dirty eater. Whatever adults may feel about table manners children will love Mucky Mabel."