The Dawn Chorus by Suzanne Barton

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Shortlisted for the Waterstone's Best Illustrated Book 2015 A heartfelt story, exceptionally illustrated by exciting new author-illustrator Suzanne Barton.


The Dawn Chorus by Suzanne Barton

Now in fantastic new big book size - perfect for shared reading lessons. Peep awakes one morning to the sound of a beautiful song - but where is it coming from? It's the Dawn Chorus! And Peep is desperate to sing with them. But no matter how hard he tries, he just can't make it happen. Little does Peep know, he's just about to meet someone very special who will show him just how enchanting nightingales like him can be...

About the Author

Suzanne Barton originally studied Psychology at University, but with a passion for illustration she later undertook a BA in Illustration and an MA in Children's Book Illustration. Suzanne had long-wanted to write and illustrate her own book for children - and when her work was spotted at a book fair, her dream became reality. Suzanne's influences include Japanese prints and illustrators she remembers from her childhood. Her artwork is a beautiful combination of collage, drawing and painting, and with a love of patterns and prints, Suzanne can often be found searching through vintage paper shops for inspiration. The Dawn Chorus is Suzanne's very first book.

A Q&A with Suzanne Barton

What are your 5 favourite books, and why? (not necessarily children’s books)

The Count of Monte Cristo

Jane Eyre

Pride and Prejudice

Lord of the Rings

Anything in the Patrick O’Brian Aubrey – Maturin series

I thought I couldn’t answer the why bit of the question, but looking at them all together, I think I must love a character going on a transformational journey!

Who are your 5 favourite authors/illustrators, and why? (not necessarily children’s authors/illustrators)

Tove Jansson, Edward Ardizzone, Isabelle Arsenault, Alexis Deacon, Maurice Sendak

What was your favourite book when you were a child?

Can I say more than one? Anything by Noel Streatfeild ( especially The Circus is Coming) and The Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett , I also loved Carbonel by Barbara Sleigh.

Who is your favourite hero in a book?

Aragorn from Lord of the Rings

Who is your favourite villain in a book?

Haven’t managed to come up with one yet.

If you could be a character from a book who would you be?

Anne from Anne of Green Gables

If you could recommend just one book for everyone to read what would it be?

The Count of Monte Cristo

What book do you wish you had written?

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

Who or what was your biggest influence in deciding to become a writer?

Being on the MA in Children’s Book Illustration at the Cambridge School of Art and wanting to do the words as well as the pictures.

What inspired you to write your latest book?

Lying in bed listening to the birds one morning.

What's the best thing you've ever written?

The Dawn Chorus (it is the only thing so far!)

When did you start writing?

2 years ago But I have come to picture books from an Illustration background which I have been working on for about 10 years.

If someone wanted to be a writer what would be your number one tip for them?

Try and write something every day and don’t be too worried about whether it’s good or not, it’s more important to write something first and then make it as good as it can be.

Is there any particular routine involved in your writing process (favourite pen, lucky charm, special jumper)?

I draw much more than I write, and I always work in a little messy room with all my books and the cat sleeps in the third drawer down of my desk.

Do you have any abandoned stories in you ‘bottom drawer’ that you would like to revisit?

Yes a picture book called Pod

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Book Info


32 pages


Suzanne Barton
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Bloomsbury Childrens an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing PLC

Publication date

26th February 2015




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