The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson

The Gruffalo

Written by Julia Donaldson
Illustrated by Axel Scheffler

5+ readers   Bedtime Reading   Bookshelf Essentials   3+ readers   Reluctant Readers   
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“A mouse took a stroll through the deep dark wood. A fox saw the mouse and the mouse looked good.”
So begins the story of how a clever little mouse outwits his big scary enemy. The tasty little mouse needs to make his way through the deep dark woods. How will he do it? By inventing the gruffalo, a fearsome creature with terrible claws, terrible tusks and terrible teeth in his terrible jaws. It’s a brilliant trick. The little mouse’s self-preservation is a witty scam that delights children time after time.

Winner of the 2007 Prima Baby and Pregnancy Reader Awards Best Buy for Toddlers Award.

For lots more information on the Gruffalo books, games and activities visit


The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson

A rhyming story about a clever little mouse and a monster. When mouse goes for a walk in a dangerous forest, he invents tales of a fantastic creature called a Gruffalo to scare off his enemies. Imagine his surprise when he meets a real Gruffalo!


A clever, exuberant story in rhyme with strong, color-saturated pictures to match . . . This is a sure bet. Booklist

This is a marvellous, entertaining story which brilliantly demonstrates how humour and metaphor can be so effective in communicating important messages. During a walk through the dark woods a little mouse frightens off various predators by pretending to be on the way to meet a gruffalo. This fearsome beast has awesome features - terrible tusks and teeth, orange eyes, purple prickles, warts and knobbly knees - and its favourite food is, variously, roasted fox, owl ice cream or scrambled snake. Of course, it exists only in the mouse's imagination - or does it? In a neat twist, when the mouse actually meets a gruffalo (whose favourite food is really mouse sandwiches), it cleverly uses the other predators to convince the creature that a mouse is pretty scary, and its favourite food is...gruffalo crumble. Result: one fleeing gruffalo; one contented mouse safe to walk in the woods. A brilliant, funny book, written in flowing rhyme and imaginatively illustrated, well-deserving of its 1999 Smarties Gold Award. Kirkus UK

About the Author

Julia Donaldson

Julia Donaldson is the prize-winning author of the world’s most-loved picture books including What the Ladybird Heard and The Gruffalo, the latter of which has sold over 14 million copies worldwide, been translated into 50 languages and been adapted into a popular animated film. She was the UK Children’s Laureate from 2011-2013 and was awarded an MBE in 2011 for services to Literature. Julia lives in West Sussex and Edinburgh.

Click here to read a Q & A with Julia.

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Book Info


32 pages
Interest Age: From 3


Julia Donaldson
More books by Julia Donaldson

Author's Website


Pan Macmillan

Publication date

27th August 1999




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