10 Fun Facts about my books and characters

  1. The Queen's Hat was my first picture book.
  2. It was inspired a newspaper article.
  3. The book was illustrated in the colours of the Union Jack.
  4. The Queen's butler is hidden on almost every single page.
  5. I wrote the story in April, 2011. The book published first in the UK, in May 2014.
  6. The late great author and illustrator, Ronald Searle, said The Queen's Hat is 'infinitely interesting' on a postcard he sent me in 2011.
  7. The Queen's Hat is Part 1 in a of series books. In the second book, The Queen's Handbag, she chases a thieving swan across the UK. Will there be a third adventure?
  8. The Queen's Hat was shortlisted for many awards and it won Oscar's First Book Prize.
  9. A Shaun the Sheep based on this book raised £15,000.00 for charity.
  10. A copy of The Queen's Hat is displayed in Buckingham Palace's Play Room.

  1. The Queen's butler can be seen carrying a mystery box on almost every page. But you'll have to look hard to find him!
  2. I wanted to include lots of other famous places in the book, including the Blackpool Tower, Lands End, Loch Ness and Brighton Peir. But there weren't enough pages! 
  3. On each page there are lots of fun details, including a shamrock, a kilt, the Madhatter's Hat and even an alien!
  4. There's a Union Jack on almost every page.
  5. The hardest page to draw was the 'Oxford' page, because of all those bicycles!
  6. There are two officers playing 'Paper Rock Scissors' on the endpapers.
  7. I finished the Queen's Handbag in August 2014. It first published in the UK in October 2015.
  8. I finished the book in less than three months, which was hard work! The Queen's Hat took me over a year to finish.
  9. I reversed the colours of The Queen's Hat for The Queen's Handbag.
  10. My family's pet dog, Henry, appears on the second to last page of the book.

  1. Please Mr Panda is the first book in a series of Mr Panda books, which are all about manners.
  2. Mr Panda may look grumpy but he has a heart of gold. 
  3. The story of Please Mr Panda popped into my head one Sunday afternoon, while I was drawing in my sketchbook.
  4. In January 2015 Please Mr Panda was read in 645 Barnes and Noble book stores across the USA at the same time!
  5. Please Mr Panda was my third picture book.
  6. Mr Panda does not like doughnuts. I, however, love doughnuts.
  7. Mr Panda's final line in the book was almost changed to 'I prefer cupcakes'.
  8. The grey, wavy design of the background was accidental. My printer didn't have enough ink! But I liked the effect so much that I put it in the book.
  9. The title was originally 'Would You Like a Doughnut?'
  10. Even though the book appears simple, it took me months to get all of the illustrations just right.

  1. Betty Goes Bananas was my second picture book.
  2. The title popped into my head while I was watching TV on a Saturday evening.
  3. The very first sketch of the cover is in my Top Secret Sketchbook, which I take with me to all my events.
  4. Betty Goes Bananas was a number one bestselling children's book in Taiwan.
  5. The background on each page is banana paper! 
  6. Mr Toucan is called Mr Toucan because he plays the 'adult' role in the book.
  7. Whenever I hold a Betty Goes Bananas event the audience scream so loudly that some adults have to cover their ears.
  8. This book has a sequel: Betty Goes Bananas in her Pyjamas!
  9. This book is about temper tantrums!
  10. The only colours in this book are yellow, red and pink.

  1. The book is about war and peace, and it asks the question 'What are we fighting for?'
  2. The idea of putting Red Rectangles in a picture book was inspired by a painting called 'Eight Red Rectangles', by Malevich.
  3. The actual story then came to me in a dream. I got up at 3AM and sketched lizards and rectangles in my Top Secret Sketchbook, which I take with me to all my events.
  4. I chose green because it is the complimentary colour to red.
  5. This book has only two colours.
  6. The red rectangles were drawn on my computer. The lizards were drawn by hand.
  7. The book took about two months to complete.
  8. Ironically, I am red-green colourblind.
  9. If you look closely, you'll see that not all of the lizards and rectangles want to fight.
  10. Can you spot the tiny lizard that's trapped under some of the rectangles inside the book?