Mister Cleghorn's Seal by Judith Kerr

Mister Cleghorn's Seal

Written by Judith Kerr
Illustrated by Judith Kerr

9+ readers   7+ readers   eBooks   
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The Lovereading4Kids comment

The much-loved author of The Tiger Who Came to Tea has written and illustrated a delightful new story that is perfect for all the family. When lonely Mr Cleghorn adopts Charlie, an orphaned seal, after a visit to the seaside he has no idea quite how difficult it will be to look after him! Luckily, his neighbour Miss Craig loves animals too and is more than willing to help him! Together, the pair do everything they can to keep the little seal pup happy. And keeping the little seal pup happy makes them very happy too in this touching and funny story. A new gem and a classic in the making from Judith Kerr to delight readers young and old. ~ Julia Eccleshare

One of our Books of the Year 2015- now out in with accompanying CD.

A Piece of Passion from Ann-Janine Murtagh, Executive Publisher “Judith delivered Mister Cleghorn's Seal to my delight and surprise earlier this year. From my first glimpse of her exquisite pencil drawings and on reading the very first few pages of the story I knew we had something extraordinarily special and simply had to publish right away. In a recording studio in London this week Judith and I both listened to Bill Nighy reading the story aloud - it was pure magic! Mister Cleghorn's Seal is a small masterpiece of words and pictures by the inimitable, irrepressible and most wonderful Judith Kerr - and I am deeply proud to be publishing it on the HarperCollins Children’s list this Autumn”.


Mister Cleghorn's Seal by Judith Kerr

An exquisite story to delight readers young and old, from a much-loved writer and illustrator. Includes an audio CD of the heartfelt reading by award-winning British actor Bill Nighy, with an afterword recorded by Judith herself. What do you do if you find an abandoned seal pup on a rock in the middle of the sea? Well, take it home with you to your flat, of course. At least that's what Mr Albert Cleghorn thought, though perhaps he hadn't considered all the complications...This is the story of what then happened to Mr Cleghorn and Charlie the seal in their determination to find a home for Charlie and, incidentally, happiness for them both. Sometimes funny, sometimes sad, Mister Cleghorn's Seal is a classic in the making from the inimitable Judith Kerr. This edition also includes, on audio CD, a heartfelt dramatisation voiced by award-winning British actor Bill Nighy, with an afterword recorded by Judith herself.


Praise for The Tiger Who Came To Tea:

Near perfection of form is embellished by clear, expressive illustrations. The pace is exactly right, the resolution totally satisfying. Dorothy Butler, Babies Need Books

Praise for My Henry:

It bears all her trademarks, lively illustration, a cheerful blend of the everyday and the fantastic... A deeply poignant yet ultimately uplifting tale... Giulia Rhode, Sunday Express

Praise for One Night in the Zoo:

Lovely... uses soothing, pastel illustrations and exotic animals to make basic counting seem unintimidating. Daily Telegraph

Praise for Mog the Forgetful Cat:

Grandparents are likely to get as much fun out of seeing it again as the new generation of fans just learning to read! Choice Magazine

About the Author

Judith Kerr

July 2016 Judith Kerr wins a Book Trust Lifetime Achievement Award. She received the award at London Zoo, at a ceremony hosted by former Children’s Laureate and BookTrust President, Michael Morpurgo. Judith Kerr said: "I am honoured and delighted that I have been chosen to receive the BookTrust’s Lifetime Achievement Award. I thank them very much, and as the presentation is to be at London Zoo, I’ll also be able to thank the tigers in the tiger enclosure who started it all."

Judith Kerr was born in Berlin in 1923 but escaped from Hitler’s Germany with her parents and brother in 1933 when she was nine years old. Her father was a drama critic and distinguished writer whose books were burned by the Nazis, because he dared to speak out against the regime. The day after the family left Berlin, the authorities came to arrest them, and throughout the war there was a price on her father’s head. Judith and her family passed through Switzerland and France before finally arriving in England in 1936. Judith wrote about her experiences in her classic autobiographical story, When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit.

Judith won a scholarship to the Central School of Arts in 1945, and since then has worked as an artist, television scriptwriter and, for the past thirty years, as an author and illustrator of children’s books. Judith was married to the scriptwriter Nigel Kneale, who died in 2006, most famous for the hit sci‐fi series Quatermass. Her son is the writer Matthew Kneale who won the Whitbread Book Award for The English Passengers. Judith lives in south west London.

The Tiger Who Came to Tea was Judith’s first picture book and was published in 1968. She wrote it after telling the story at bedtime to her daughter Tracey and son Matthew. Lady Antonia Fraser was one of the first people to review the book and called it, “a dazzling first book,” that would make children “scream with delicious pleasure at the dangerous naughtiness of the notion.” The book has become a classic and appeared in the Telegraph’s list of top children’s books of all time. It has sold over 5 million copies, and celebrated its 40th Anniversary in October 2008. The Tiger Who Came to Tea was recently made into a stage play written by David Wood and produced by Nick Brooke, which has toured the UK.

Emily Gravett on Judith Kerr:

'I read The Tiger Who Came to Tea when I was a child and loved it. I remember being obsessed with the bit where the tiger came and drank all the water in the tap. I think it was the domesticity of it, that this person was at home and that this could actually happen. It was so matter-of-fact. Nothing really happens but it's still somehow magical.

'Kerr keeps the text very simple, and the illustrations give you clues as to how you should read it. In her Mog books, you can look at Mog's face to see how shocked or dramatic the action is. He is just a funny cat, with a woebegone expression.'

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Book Info


Mixed media product
Contains Paperback and CD-Audio
96 pages
Interest Age: From 7


Judith Kerr
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HarperCollins Children's Books an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers

Publication date

25th August 2016




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