Our Authors
Emma Adams

Emma Adams grew up spending lots of her time in her local library, reading Roald Dahl books and imagining she was Matilda. Her love of reading turned into a love of publishing when she went to Loughborough University to study Publishing with English, and when Emma later started working on books for children it felt like the most natural thing in the world. Emma lives in Hackney, London.
Ian Adams

Ian Adams is an experienced drumming teacher. He has also toured with bands throughout Europe, and regularly plays in studio recording sessions for a number of groups.
Julia Adams

Julia Adams is an author and editor of children's books. She has an MA in Children's Literature.
Simon Adams

Simon Adams was born in Bristol and studied at London and Bristol universities. He then worked as an editor of children's reference books before becoming a full-time writer 18 years ago. Since then, he has written and contributed to more than 70 books on subjects as varied as American history, the sinking of the Titanic, the two world wars and the history of jazz. He has written for many major children`s publishers including Dorling Kindersley and Kingfisher. His work for Watts includes titles in the Citizen Guides, Flashpoints, World War One and World War Two series as well as, most recently, Countries in the News. He lives in London, listens to lots of jazz, and is an avid reader of both fiction and non-fiction books.
Hakim Adi

Dr Hakim Adi is Reader in the History of Africa and the African Diaspora at the University of Chichester.
John Agard

John Agard was born in Guyana and emigrated to Britain in 1977. He has worked as an actor and a performer with a jazz group and spent several years with the Commonwealth Institute, travelling all over Britain giving talks, performances and workshops. He has visited literally thousands of schools. His poem 'Half-caste' is on the AQA Englsih GCSE syllabus, and every year he tours the country performing with other top poets for GCSE students. His children's poetry includes WE ANIMALS WOULD LIKE A WORD WITH YOU, POINTS OF VIEW WITH PROFESSOR PEEKABOO, and most recently EINSTEIN, THE GIRL WHO HATED MATHS and HELLO H2O, poems about maths and science respectively. All these titles have been in collaboration with the illustrator Satoshi Kitamura He lives in Sussex and is married to Grace Nichols, herself a respected Caribbean poet. They have a daughter.
Jenny Alexander

Jenny Alexander is the author of many fiction and non fiction reading books for educational publishers, including Mouse and the Bullies (Longman), which has been approved by ChildLine. She is also the author of Your Child: Bullying (Element), which appears on the DfEE Bullying Pack recommended reading list and has been endorsed by Susan Jeffers (author of Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway). Her interest in this subject began when her son was bullied at school.
Judy Allen

Judy Allen's Awaiting Developments won the Whitbread Award, the Friends of the Earth Earthworm Award, and was commended for the Carnegie Medal. Author of more than 30 books for children published to critical acclaim - and frequently reaching prize short-lists - she also writes for radio; 5 plays for BBC Radio 4, dramatisations of The Secret Garden, Tom's Midnight Garden, and Philippa Pearce for BBC Radio. Her award-winning adult fiction December Flower was televised by Granada in 1985, adapted for BBC Radio and televised in US.
Georgia Amson-Bradshaw

Georgia Amson-Bradshaw is a children's writer and editor who lives in Brighton, East Sussex. She has worked on a number of high-profile and award-winning science books for kids, including the Royal Society Young People's Book Prize winner Eye Benders, and the London Science Museum activity book This Book Thinks You're a Scientist. She remembers the eye-opening and inspiring effect her favourite books had on her as a child, and so takes her responsibility to pass that interest and excitement on very seriously!
Judith Anderson

Judith Anderson writes extensively for children. She teaches Creative Writing at the University of Winchester.
Giles Andreae

Giles Andreae is the author of many top-selling, award-winning picture books. These include Rumble in the Jungle, Commotion in the Ocean and I Love My Mummy. However, it is for the international bestseller Giraffes Can't Dance that he is best known. Giles is also the creator of Purple Ronnie, Britain's favourite stickman, and of the artist/philosopher, Edward Monkton. These two ranges of greetings cards, books and merchandise have made Giles the country's top-selling living poet. Giles lives with his wife, Victoria, a children's clothes designer, and their four young children by the river in Oxfordshire.
Matt Anniss

Matt Anniss has edited and written for some of the most prestigious DJ magazines out there, including Mixmag and IDJ. He also DJs regularly in clubs around the world and has even released his own singles.
Bea Appleby

Bea Appleby is the former editor of Girl Talk magazine, and the current editor of The Female Lead.
Roy Apps

Roy Apps is the author of more than fifty children's books, including The Twitches, Fang Gang and How To Handle. He is the author of the highly successful Dream to Win series for Franklin Watts.His novel The Secret Summer of Daniel Lyons won The Writers' Guild Children's Book Award and was shortlisted for the Whitbread Awards. It is now a successful musical.Roy writes extensively for radio, theatre and TV. In 2001 he was awarded a BAFTA for his children's TV work, which includes Byker Grove, The Ghost Hunter and Barmy Aunt Boomerang.Roy visits schools, libraries and bookshops to read from his books and to share the secrets of The Shed in Your Head . He runs Writing Projects for all ages and over the last few years has helped young and new writers make books, stage plays, films, performance poetry and most recently, an opera.
Joe Archer

Joe Archer works at Kew Gardens as Head Horticulturalist in the kitchen garden. He appeared in the 'Kew on a Plate' television programme with Raymond Blanc.
Mandy Archer

Mandy Archer has written all kinds of titles for children, ranging from innovative board books for babies through to picture books, pop-ups and paperback fiction. She shares a studio in Epsom with a creative team of writers and designers. When she needs some extra inspiration, she enjoys talking in primary schools about fairy tales, story writing and more. Mandy and her family live near the racecourse on Epsom Downs in Surrey.
Ronda Armitage

Ronda Armitage was born in New Zealand, and later moved to London with her husband and children. Her first book, The Lighthouse Keeper's Lunch, soon became a popular series of books. Ronda has gone on to write many much-loved stories for children, including A Very Strange Creature and the fabulous Small Knight and George series about a little knight and his pet dragon. Ronda lives in East Sussex with her husband, David.
Tim Atkinson

Tim Atkinson has worked in education for more than 20 years. He was assistant headteacher at Boston Grammar School until July 2009 and is now a full-time author and educational consultant.In addition to his contribution to the Discover Countries series Tim has written books on the subject of Fatherhood and Creative Writing and is the author of the acclaimed novel, Writing Therapy.
Steve Backshall

Steve Backshall is well-known as a TV presenter, wildlife enthusiast and explorer. He travels the world to learn about the most inspiring animals, from boxing mantis shrimp to charging tigers. Steve also regularly writes articles for newspapers and magazines including the NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC TRAVELER and BBC WILDLIFE and is an inspirational public speaker.Steve's website is, and you can follow him on Facebook at and on Twitter @SteveJBackshall.
Jacqui Bailey

Jacqui Bailey has spent a lot of her adult life working with children's books. She has been an editor and publisher of everything from picture books to encyclopedias, but mostly enjoys finding out amazing bits of information and then writing about them. She particularly likes writing about science, as the information so often turns out to be far stranger than fiction.