Related to: 'Fergus Barnaby Goes on Holiday'

Author Spotlight with Graham Marks

Jane Simmons

Jane Simmons is a uniquely talented award-winning illustrator and author, and the creator of some of our best-loved children’s books. Here she talks to Graham Marks about boats, motorbikes and making a mess, as well as her words, her art and her latest picture book, Lily Gets Lost.

Hodder Children's Books

The Big Race

David Barrow
Authors:
David Barrow

Aardvark is only small and the Big Race is long and hard. But Aardvark is going to join in and give it everything she's got!A heart-warming, stylish and delightfully funny celebration of taking part rather than winning from Sebastian Walker Award winner David Barrow.If you love Julia Donaldson's The Ugly Five, you will love this.The Big Race is packed full of wonderful African animals including an aardvark, crocodile, cheetah, buffalo and African hoopoe. Visit David at davebarrowillustration.co.uk and follow him at @DaveBarrow3.

Fabi Santiago

Fabi Santiago is the author of Tiger in a Tutu, shortlisted for the Waterstones Picture Books Prize. Fabi was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and has been making pictures ever since she could hold her first crayon. After studying art and design, Fabi went travelling and came across the MA in Children's Book Illustration at the Cambridge School of Art, from where she graduated in 2014. Fabi's illustrations are full of movement and bold limited colours, and her media of choice is screen-printing. She likes the outdoors, cycling, dance and theatre, all of which are inspiration for her stories. Fabi lives in London with her ginger fellow and her cat, Porridge.

Izzi Howell

Izzi Howell is the author and editor of over fifty children's books. She lives in East Sussex and enjoys learning languages, cooking and travelling around Europe.

James Mayhew

James Mayhew studied at Maidstone College of Art and his first children's book, Katie's Picture Show was published in 1989. It's been firmly in print ever since, recognised universally as the original and best introduction to art for children. Many more titles have followed, and the series sells in museums and galleries all over the world, from the Met in New York, to the Uffizi in Florence, the Louvre in Paris and beyond. He is also the creator of the much-loved Ella Bella Ballerina series, and many other titles. Alongside his work in publishing, James has devised and performed in a hugely successful series of concerts for children, combining live classical music, storytelling and live art. From Peter and the Wolf, to Scheherazade, James has worked internationally with many different orchestras and musicians, creating illustrations in time to music. James grew up in Suffolk but now lives in Hertfordshire.

Jessica Courtney Tickle

Jessica Courtney-Tickle graduated from Kingston University in July 2014 where she studied illustration and animation and found a specialism in children's picture books. She loves working with colour, texture and lots and lots of characters. Jessica lives in Cambridgeshire. She was longlisted for the Waterstones Children's Book Prize 2017 (The Story Orchestra, Four Seasons in One Day), and shortlisted for the 2014 Prize for Illustration with the AOI and the London Transport Museum.

Kay Barnham

Kay Barnham was born in Barrow-in-Furness, grew up in Carlisle, went to college in Brighton, and lived in Hove for a while, before sailing for Kinsale, Co Cork, popping back to Hove and then moving to the New Forest with her husband and daughter. And never at any point has she lived more than ten miles from the sea. She began working in children's publishing in 1992. She was an editor first of all, working on illustrated non-fiction and learning fun facts like how long it would take to walk to the moon - nine years - and how to spell palaeontology. Next, she commissioned fiction titles, editing picture books, storybooks and novels. And then she got the chance to write her own books, which she thinks is quite the best job ever. Except possibly being a chocolatier. She writes non-fiction as Kay Barnham. Her specialist subjects include ice-skating, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, lightning, fairies, Roald Dahl, Sir Isaac Newton, Christmas, dolphins, Florence Nightingale and very bad cracker jokes. And chocolate.She also writes fiction as Kay Woodward, including the Skate School series for Usborne and the novels Jane Airhead and Wuthering Hearts for Andersen Press. Altogether, she's written about a hundred books. Her favourite colour is navy blue. Her favourite chocolate is 85% cocoa solids.

Leo Hunt

Leo Hunt was born in Newcastle upon Tyne in 1991. He grew up around books, and his mother's job at Seven Stories in Newcastle left a strong impression on his choice of career. He realised he wanted to either be an author or an archeologist - but when he learned that archaeologists didn't unearth piles of perfectly preserved dinosaur bones every time they put a spade in the ground, he decided on the former. Leo started writing his debut novel, Thirteen Days of Midnight when he was 19, in his first year at the University of East Anglia. It went on to be shortlisted for the 2016 Waterstones Children's Book Prize. He currently lives in London.

Lorna Scobie

Lorna Scobie is a London-based illustrator and book designer. Growing up surrounded by nature in the English countryside has heavily influenced her illustrations - her work almost always revolves around the natural world and Animal Kingdom. Lorna illustrates her work by hand, primarily using ink pens, watercolour and coloured pens.

Louise Spilsbury

Louise Spilsbury is a prolific children's book author. She has written titles on almost every subject, from science and geography through to world affairs, social issues, art, history, and literacy. Louise is married to the author Richard Spilsbury and has two children. She lives and works in Devon.

Lucy Courtenay

Lucy Courtenay has officially been writing children's fiction since 1999, and unofficially for a lot longer than that. Her desk drawers are full of half-finished stories waiting for the right moment to emerge and dance around her study in a shower of exuberant paperclips. Her latest books indulge her love of teenage romance: The Kiss is published by Hodder, with Movie Night and Girl at Sea coming in 2018.

Marta Kissi

Marta Kissi is a London based illustrator originally from Warsaw. She studied BA Illustration & Animation at Kingston University and MA Communication Art & Design at the Royal College of Art. Her favourite part of being an illustrator is bringing stories to life by designing charming characters and the wonderful worlds they live in. She shares a studio in London with her boyfriend and their pet plant Trevor.

Mike Brownlow

Mike Brownlow is the creator of many books for children. He wrote and illustrated the picture book Little Robots, which was turned into a major animated TV show for CBeebies and aired in over 70 countries worldwide. His other books include Mickey Moonbeam, Dog Did It! and The Big White Book. Mike lives in Somerset and has three grown-up daughters.

Mike Gordon

Mike Gordon is an ever-popular and award-winning cartoonist. He has produced over 500 cards for Hallmark and over 300 picture books for various publishers. His talent has been rewarded with numerous awards inlcuding Berol cartoonist of the year (1988) and runner up for the Trento Fra realto e Follia (1990). He was also nominated for the Silver Quill Award (Germany, 1991) and for the Book and Magazine Illustrator of the Year by the National Cartoonists Society (1995).

Mo Farah

Sir Mo Farah was born in Mogadishu, Somalia in 1983. As a young child he spent time in Djibouti before moving to England at the age of eight. Mo initially struggled with the language barrier, but his PE teacher at Feltham Community College, Alan Watkinson, quickly spotted his potential as a runner and encouraged him to join Borough of Hounslow Athletics Club. After attending St Mary's Endurance Performance and Coaching Centre in Twickenham, Mo became a professional athlete. At the 2012 London Olympic Games he won gold in the 10,000m - Britain's first gold in this event. He followed this up with a stunning victory in the 5000m to become, in the words of Dave Moorcroft, 'the greatest male distance runner that Britain has ever seen.' Mo was appointed CBE in the Honours List in 2013 and in December 2016 he was awarded a knighthood in the Queen's New Year's Honours list. He lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife Tania, and their three daughters Rhianna, Aisha and Amani.

Nadiya Hussain

Never again will she say she can't. Nadiya can and she will. Nadiya Hussain's delicious bakes and desserts, captivating smile and sparkling personality made her a hugely popular winner of 2015's Great British Bake Off. Her first children's book, Nadiya's Bake Me a Story, hit the bestseller charts in 2016, and was shortlisted for a British Book Award. The follow-up, Bake Me a Festive Story, is out now. She has also published cookbooks for adults and novels, and has three television series to her name, The Chronicles of Nadiya, Nadiya's British Food Adventure and The Big Family Cooking Showdown.Nadiya's family is originally from Bangladesh, where desserts aren't a feature of mealtimes. But, encouraged by a school home economics teacher, Nadiya honed her skills as a baker over ten years and produces fabulous bakes and desserts every day. She also loves to write, having won a National Poetry competition as a child.Nadiya lives with her husband, Abdal and is mum to three gorgeous children.

Neal Layton

Neal is an award-winning illustrator and author of children's books. He has worked on more than 80 titles to date, working with authors such Cressida Cowell and Michael Rosen, and won several prizes including a Gold Award in the Nestle Children's Book Prize for 'That Rabbit belongs to Emily Brown'. His books have also been shortlisted for the Red House Book Awards, the Blue Peter Book Awards, the Booktrust Early Years Award, Funfzig Jahre Deutcher Jugendliteraturpreis and New York Public Library's annual list of best Children's Books.He also writes his own books, 'The Invincible Tony Spears' and the bestselling 'Mammoth Academy' Series. His books are currently in print in more than 16 languages worldwide. He lives in Portsmouth with his wife and two daughters.

Nick East

Nick East is the illustrator of the bestselling Toto the Ninja Cat as well as the Goodnight Digger and Knock Knock series. He has been working as a museum designer for the past 16 years but has always been a storyteller, whether as a child, filling sketchbooks with quirky characters, or as a designer displaying a collection of ancient artefacts. Nick lives near York with his wife and two children and, when he isn't drawing, he is out riding bikes and spending time with his family.Find Nick at nickeastillustration.com

Nicola Davies

Nicola Davies is an award-winning author whose books for children include Big Blue Whale, Just Ducks!, One Tiny Turtle and The Promise, which was declared one of the best picture books of the year by the New York Times. She graduated in zoology, studied whales and bats, then worked in the BBC Nature History Unit. She was one of the original presenters of The Really Wild Show. Nicola lives in Abergavenny, Monmouthshire, Wales. Visit her website at www.nicola-davies.com

Olivia Chase

Olivia Chase is the pseudonym for Rosie Best. A writer, editor, nerd and procrastinator, Rosie has three cats called Midnight, Misty and Imp, and loves singing, video games and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. She's written lots of fiction for younger readers, as well as the YA novels, Skulk, Demon Hunters: Trinity and Demon Hunters: Ascension. You can find her on Twitter: @rosiejbest

Patricia Elliott

Patricia Elliott has written nine novels for children and young adults. Her first novel with Hodder, The Ice Boy, won the Fidler Award for a First Novel and was shortlisted for the Branford-Boase among other awards. Her second, Murkmere, was long-listed for the Guardian Fiction Award and she has since been short-listed for many others, including the Calderdale and the Wirral Paperback of the Year. Her most recent YA is a Victorian Gothic, The Devil in the Corner. Her new MG series, the Connie Carew Mysteries, is set in the Edwardian period: The House of Eyes and The Ship of Spectres.Patricia was (and is!) a voracious reader and always scribbled stories during a childhood spent overseas. She worked in publishing in London and in bookselling in New York before taking an M.A. in Writing for Children. She has been a tutor at Morley College, London, and in between writing now leads workshops for both adults and children, including Chelsea Young Writers. She is an active member of CWISL (Children's Writers and Illustrators in South London). She is married, with two sons. www.patriciaelliott.co.uk