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Quentin Blake - Author

About the Author

In 2010 we had a special feature on Quentin Blake's writing and illustration - click here to find out more.

Quentin Blake is one of Britain's best-loved and most successful author-illustrators, and was made the first Children's Laureate in 1999.  He has won the Whitbread Award, the hans Christian Andersen Award for Illustration, been shortlisted for The Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award which rewards the best in contemporary children's and young adult literature from all over the world and has won the Kate Greenaway Medal among others. 

He was born in 1932 and has been drawing ever since he can remember. His first drawing was published in Punch when he was only 16. He studied English at Downing College, Cambridge, and after that he did a postgraduate teaching diploma at the University of London. This was followed by a part-time course at Chelsea Art School.

Quentin has received many awards for his books including the Kate Greenaway Medal, the Children's Book Award, the Emil/Kurt Maschler Award, the Bologna Regazzi Prize and the 2002 Hans Christian Andersen Award for Illustration, which is the highest international recognition given to creators of children's books.

He is also famous for illustrating books for other authors, including Joan Aiken, Michael Rosen and Russell Hoban. But he is most famous for the illustrations he did for Roald Dahl's books.

Quentin Blake was awarded the O.B.E. in 1988, and in 1999 he was appointed the first Children's Laureate. This position, which he held for two years, saw him undertaking lots of ambitious projects in his quest to spread the word about the exciting world of children's books.

His book Laureate's Progress in 2002, recorded many of his activities and the illustrations he produced during his two-year tenure. Quentin Blake was created CBE in 2005, is an RDI and has numerous honorary degrees from universities throughout the UK. 

For parents who love Quentin Blake's illustrations, his book Beyond the Page  is a fascinating read. Blake writes about his projects since 2000, vividly describing his working processes, his collaborators, his travels, and his various projects and commissions, including his 'illustrated walls' projects for hospitals in the UK and France.

He is one of the best-known and best-loved illustrators of our time, and his books with a wide range of authors have been treasured by generations of children throughout the world. In 2013 he was knighted for services to illustration. Quentin lives in London. 

photo © Linda Kitson

Featured books by Quentin Blake

The House in the Tree

The House in the Tree

9+ readers

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback Release Date: 22/06/2017

All children dream of having a secret house where they can live on their own, far from any rules and regulations. But not all of them are as lucky as Aglaia, who lives at the top of a magical tree together with her friend Bianca and an incredible host of flying dogs, talking cats, carnivorous flowers and children who speak in verse.Inventively illustrated by Quentin Blake, Aglaia's adventures - and her battles with the gruff Signor Brullo and the woodmen who want to cut down the tree - are sure to enchant and inspire the imagination of every child.

Three Little Monkeys

Three Little Monkeys

3+ readers 5+ readers

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Hardback Release Date: 19/09/2016

A classic of the future. Hilda Snibbs had three little monkeys. Their names were Tim and Sam and Lulu. They were very lively...

ebook of the month

Other books by Quentin Blake

The Weed

The Weed

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Hardback Release Date: 05/03/2020

The Weed is a new title from the highly acclaimed author/illustrator Quentin Blake. An inspiring fable about the power of nature, encouraging children and adults alike to care for the environment and each other. The Meadowsweet family suddenly and expectedly find themselves at the bottom of a giant crack in the earth. With the help of their pet bird, Octavia and a magical seed, the family go on a journey to the surface. A charming, fantastical story about discovery, the potential for growth, the power of an idea and the importance of having faith in the unknown.

The Five of Us

The Five of Us

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/03/2020

The Five of Us is a captivating tale of adventure, friendship and teamwork from one of Britain's best-loved illustrators. Angie, Ollie, Simona, Mario and Eric are five fantastic friends, each of whom has an unusual ability. Disaster strikes on a day out to the countryside but, working together and combining their individual powers, the Fantastic Five save the day. Teeming with Quentin Blake's characteristic sense of fun and his exuberant illustrations, The Five of Us is a powerful, though subtle, reminder that the world is a better place when we can focus on what we can do, rather than what we can't.

Three Little Monkeys Ride Again

Three Little Monkeys Ride Again

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Hardback Release Date: 03/10/2019

A remarkable collaboration - that brings together giants of the picture book world - to create a funny, anarchic and utterly delightful picture book. A classic of the future. Beep! Beep! The three little monkeys are back in an irresistible new story! Hilda Snibbs is taking her three mischievous monkeys to visit her mother in the country. But what is supposed to be a calm and peaceful holiday is soon filled with chaos and hilarious havoc! Quentin Blake's delightfully funny story is brought to life by Emma Chichester Clark's beautiful mixed-media illustration in this landmark follow up to Three Little Monkeys.

Flights of Fancy

Flights of Fancy

Author: Quentin Blake Format: CD-Audio Release Date: 26/09/2019

The exceptional talents behind some of the nation's best-loved books from The Gruffalo to The BFG, We're Going on a Bear Hunt to the Charlie and Lola series the Children's Laureates are the perfect ambassadors for children's literature. It's been twenty wonderful years of the Laureateship and now all ten former honourees have banded together to celebrate the only way they know how: through stories, poems and pictures . Among others, Quentin Blake tells the stories behind his pictures of weird and wonderful beasts, Michael Morpurgo draws on childhood memories for a moving wartime tale and Michael Rosen plays with language and shapes in his witty, read-aloud poems. Each contribution is designed to inspire children to create their own work and is accompanied by a note from the authors rare insights from the finest talent in the world of children's books. Above all else, Flights of Fancy celebrates the Laureateship's most important achievement: encouraging children to let their imagination soar.

Three Little Monkeys

Three Little Monkeys

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/09/2018

A remarkable collaboration - that brings together giants of the picture book world - to create a funny, anarchic and utterly delightful picture book. A classic of the future. Hilda Snibbs had three little monkeys. Their names were Tim and Sam and Lulu. They were very lively...

The Gloriumptious Worlds of Roald Dahl

The Gloriumptious Worlds of Roald Dahl

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 09/08/2018

This fantastical and official new book, published just over 100 years after Roald Dahl's birth, will appeal to fans who grew up reading his stories, or reading them to their children, as well as to new readers who are discovering Dahl's world for the first time. It gives a brilliant new perspective on his most-loved (and hated) characters and stories. The Gloriumptious Worlds of Roald Dahl brings together Dahl's wondrous creations and Quentin Blake's iconic illustrations with previously unpublished reproductions of imagined letters, artefacts, posters and much, much more. Inspired by the characters and events from each of Dahl's books, and including original thoughts and notes on yellow lined paper - as if written by Dahl himself - the book expands upon his stories in a humorous and creative way, making it the ideal addition to everyone's Dahl collection.

Three Little Monkeys Book & CD

Three Little Monkeys Book & CD

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Mixed media product Release Date: 30/11/2017

A remarkable collaboration - that brings together giants of the picture book world - to create a funny, anarchic and utterly delightful picture book. This book and CD edition comes with audio beautifully read by Olivia Colman. Hilda Snibbs had three little monkeys. Their names were Tim and Sam and Lulu. They were very lively... Read along with this special book and CD edition of a future classic by two picture-book greats.

The Story of the Dancing Frog

The Story of the Dancing Frog

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/02/2017

The heartbroken widow of a captain drowned at sea discovers a friendly amphibian at her lowest point. But he is no ordinary frog - he's a dancing frog set on saving her! Soon the duo are touring the world with their routine, spreading light and laughter - and carrying out the occasional rescue - wherever they go. High quality cream paper and a special easy to read font ensure a smooth read for all.

Three Little Monkeys Book & CD

Three Little Monkeys Book & CD

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Hardback Release Date: 19/09/2016

A remarkable collaboration - that brings together giants of the picture book world - to create a funny, anarchic and utterly delightful picture book. A classic of the future. Hilda Snibbs had three little monkeys. Their names were Tim and Sam and Lulu. They were very lively...

Three Little Owls

Three Little Owls

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/09/2015

Three Little Owls is a charming rhyming story by the Italian artist Emanuele Luzzati, and presented here in an English version by John Yeoman and with gorgeous new illustrations by Quentin Blake. Three irrepressible little owls take us on their journey round the world, from one Christmas Day to the next - fishing, dancing, snoozing, and NOT behaving. Blake's delightful drawings combine with this fantastical poetic treat to create a story that young and old will enjoy reading again and again.

Tell Me a Picture

Tell Me a Picture

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Hardback Release Date: 08/01/2015

In 2001, Quentin Blake - the first Children' s Laureate - chose twenty-six of his favourite paintings for an exhibition at the National Gallery. Very different artworks were chosen, some by fine artists and some by children' s illustrators, but they all had one thing in common: a story to tell. The accompanying book urges children to use their imaginations and look for the stories in the pictures. Reissued with a new introduction from the author, Tell Me A Picture will show a new generation the adventures that await in looking at art.

Five of Us, The

Five of Us, The

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/09/2014

THE FIVE OF US is a captivating tale of adventure, friendship and teamwork from one of Britain's best-loved illustrators. Angie, Ollie, Simona, Mario and Eric are five fantastic friends, each of whom has an unusual ability. Disaster strikes on a day out to the countryside but, working together and combining their individual powers, the Fantastic Five save the day. Teeming with Quentin Blake's characteristic sense of fun and his exuberant illustrations, THE FIVE OF US is also a powerful, though subtle, reminder that the world is a better place when we focus on what we can do, rather than on what we can't.

Jack and Nancy

Jack and Nancy

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 27/09/2012

Jack and Nancy love to hear the sailors tell of adventures far away. But one day, they are walking on the cliffs and it starts to rain, so Jack puts up his umbrella. But the wind picks up and WHOOOOSH they are blown away to an exotic island! They explore for a bit, and even meet a parrot, but there are no sign of any ships to get them home. How will they get back?

Quentin Blake's ABC

Quentin Blake's ABC

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 27/09/2012

'A is for Apples, some green and some red, B is for Breakfast we're having in bed.' With a simple rhyming text and characteristically brilliant illustrations from Quentin Blake, this wonderful ABC is an absolute must for young children just getting to grips with their alphabet.

The Quentin Blake Treasury

The Quentin Blake Treasury

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Hardback Release Date: 27/09/2012

The Quentin Blake Treasury contains: All Join In * Quentin Blake's Nursery Rhyme Book * Patrick * Angelica Sprocket's Pockets * Mister Magnolia * Quentin Blake's ABC * Cockatoos * Angel Pavement * Mrs Armitage Queen of the Road Meet Mister Magnolia, with only one boot! Peer into Angelica Sprocket's Pockets! Set off with Mrs Armitage Queen of the Road, be whisked away by the music of the extraordinary Patrick and soar into the air on the wings of Angel Pavement. Discover the crazy counting of the mischievous Cockatoos and the most enjoyable alphabet ever in Quentin Blake's ABC. And finally, join in at the top of your voice with the verse and songs of Quentin Blake's Nursery Rhyme Book and All Join In! From Quentin's very first picture book to his most recent adventures, this collection spans and celebrates his astonishing career. There's inspiration and exuberance, wit and wonder, joy and jollity to be found within these pages; we can't wait for you to explore them...

Quentin Blake's Nursery Rhyme Book

Quentin Blake's Nursery Rhyme Book

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 27/09/2012

In this brilliant collection of traditional rhymes, Quentin Blake is in his element. Come and join him and meet the fabulous Handy spandy (Jack a Dandy), Jack Sprat, Gregory Griggs (with twenty-seven wigs), Terence McDiddler the three-stringer fiddler and many, many more!!

Angelica Sprocket's Pockets

Angelica Sprocket's Pockets

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/09/2011

Angelica Sprocket lives next door. Her overcoat has pockets galore! And you'll never guess what's in them...Prepare to be surprised, thrilled and tickled pink by Angelica Sprocket's never-ending pockets, and the marvellous things she keeps in them.

Patrick

Patrick

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 30/09/2010

Welcome to the wonderful world of Patrick! For when he plays his violin, the most extraordinary things start to happen: fish can fly, and cows can dance and trees grow cakes instead of apples. There's fireworks and fun and colours everywhere, when Patrick performs his magical tunes...

Angelo

Angelo

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/07/2010

Angelo and his family travel round the country playing music, singing songs and performing marvellous balancing tricks: Angelo can even dance on a rope! So when he meets Angelina, who is sad and lonely and trapped in her mean uncle's house, Angelo knows just how to help.

Quentin Blake's Ten Frogs / Diez Ranas English and Spanish Edition

Quentin Blake's Ten Frogs / Diez Ranas English and Spanish Edition

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Hardback Release Date: 19/04/2010

Populat book NOW IN SPANISH! A fun way for young children to learn their animals and numbers in another language Beautifully illustrated by today's best-loved illustrator Ten Frogs / Diez Ranas is Quentin Blake's hugely popular counting book - now available in English and Spanish. A great way for children to learn to count in Spanish and a genuinely beautiful book for any Quentin Blake fan. Also Available French - Ten Frogs / Dix Grenouilles HB GBP9.99 978-1-84365-104-8 Board Book - Ten Frogs (English only) BB GBP4.99 978-1-84365-128-4

Mister Magnolia

Mister Magnolia

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/03/2010

Mr Magnolia has only one boot. He has an old trumpet that goes rooty-toot - And two lovely sisters who play on the flute - But Mr Magnolia has only one boot. In this wittily rhyming picture book, Mr Magnolia has a full and happy life except for one serious omission - a boot. But one day, he receives a mysterious parcel, and at last Mr Magnolia can splash in the puddles with everyone else!

Mister Magnolia

Mister Magnolia

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/05/2009

Mister Magnolia has only one boot. He has an old trumpet that goes rooty-toot - and two lovely sisters who play on the flute - but Mister Magnolia has only one boot. In this wittily rhyming picture book, Mister Magnolia has a full and happy life except for one serious omission - a boot. But one day, he receives a mysterious parcel, and at last Mister Magnolia can splash in the puddles with everyone else! Children can enjoy their favourite story time and time again with this brilliant picture book and CD set, featuring lively music and narration by Richard Briers.

Quentin Blakes Ten Frogs A Book About Counting in English and French

Quentin Blakes Ten Frogs A Book About Counting in English and French

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Hardback Release Date: 10/04/2008

'Ten Frogs/Dix Grenouilles' is Quentin Blake's wonderfully illustrated counting book written in both English and French. Starting with 'One Crow/Un Corbeau' and proceeding with more and more animals ('Two Goats/Deux Chevres', 'Three Dogs/Trois Chiens' etc) the pages get gradually more and more filled with animals until reaching 'A Hundred Wasps/Cent Guepes'. A great way for children to learn to count in French and a genuinely beautiful book for any Quentin Blake fans. A simple concept carried out with all of Quentin Blake's legendary wit and charm A great way for children to learn to count in French Beautifully illustrated by one of the world's most-loved illustrators

Angel Pavement

Angel Pavement

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/11/2005

Corky and Loopy are two perfectly normal girls. They like chocolate biscuits, fizzy drinks, screaming at each other and drawing. But they are also a little bit special . . . because they are angels. One day they visit Sid, a pavement artist. Sid is sad because he wants to take part in the big drawing competition but can't work out how the judges will ever get to see his work. Corky and Loopy decide to help and give him a very special pencil from their collection. So begins a bright and colourful adventure.

Mrs Armitage Queen Of The Road

Mrs Armitage Queen Of The Road

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/07/2004

When Uncle Cosmo buys himself a motorbike and gives Mrs Armitage his boring old car, it soon becomes obvious that her driving skills leave a lot to be desired. Mrs Armitage and Breakspear cause havoc bumping into bollards, bedsteads, lorries, a crane and bedoinging over some extremely uneven roads. As the bumper, the doors, the mudguard and even the roof disappear along the way, the car is transformed into a mean machine and Mrs Armitage becomes Queen of the Road!

Fantastic Daisy Artichoke

Fantastic Daisy Artichoke

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/05/2001

Meet Fantastic Daisy Artichoke. She's got three fat cats we like to stroke and a pond in which she likes to soak...She isn't quite like other folk!

Zagazoo

Zagazoo

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 07/09/2000

Zagazoo is a baby like no other. In this quite exceptional picture book young readers will be delighted by the hilarious and unexpected changes in his behaviour as Zagazoo grows up. Parents may detect some strange echoes of family life. There have been many classic picture books from the incomparable pen of Quentin Blake, but never one more extraordinary.

The Green Ship

The Green Ship

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/05/2000

Two children find the Green Ship when they climb over the wall into what is more like a forest than a garden. The ship has bushes for bows and stern and its funnels are trees; a small garden shed on an ancient stump is the wheel house and in command of the ship is the owner of the garden, old Mrs Tredegar. Throughout the summer she and the Bosun and the two children sail the Seven Seas visiting exotic faraway places and having wonderful adventures.

The Children's Book of Books

The Children's Book of Books

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 12/02/2000

Mrs Armitage And The Big Wave

Mrs Armitage And The Big Wave

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/02/2000

MINI TREASURES: delightful mini picture books to treasure forever. ONE STORMY NIGHT 'One Stormy night, the wind was howling, the iron gate creaked and the black cat hissed. ' So begins Ruth Brown's spine-chilling ghost story of a night where not everything is as it seems...

Mrs Armitage And The Big Wave

Mrs Armitage And The Big Wave

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/05/1999

Ars Armitage arrives on the beach with her surfboard and her faithful dog Breakspear, and paddles out to sea to wait for the Big Wave. But, of course, Mrs Armitage can't be satisfied with just an ordinary surfboard and she is soon adding a hilarious variety of gadgets and contraptions. And when the Big Wave finally arrives, Mrs Armitage certainly surfs with style!

Mrs Armitage on Wheels

Mrs Armitage on Wheels

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/05/1999

Mrs Armitage sets off for a quiet cycle with her faithful dog, Breakspear, but she just can't help thinking of ways to improve her bicycle. Before very long she has added three very loud horns, a bucket of water to wash her hands, a complete tool kit. And by the time she has also added a seat for Breakspear, two umbrellas, a cassette player and a mouth-organ, Mrs Armitage is riding a very eye-catching contraption. But it is when she finally adds the mast and sail, that Mrs Armitage really runs into trouble. . .

Mister Magnolia

Mister Magnolia

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/05/1999

Mr Magnolia has only one boot. He has an old trumpet that goes rooty-toot - And two lovely sisters who play on the flute - But Mr Magnolia has only one boot. In this wittily rhyming picture book, Mr Magnolia has a full and happy life except for one serious omission - a boot. But one day, he receives a mysterious parcel, and at last Mr Magnolia can splash in the puddles with everyone else!

Drawing for the Artistically Undiscovered

Drawing for the Artistically Undiscovered

Author: Quentin Blake, John Cassidy Format: Mixed media product Release Date: 01/03/1999

Learn to draw with Quentin Blake! Quentin Blake is one of the most celebrated illustrators in the world today, and the best person imaginable to collaborate on this sketchbook with training wheels. Full of inspirational artwork, instruction and plenty of whitespace reserved for the artist-to-be. Pages of scribble-starters and what-to-draw ideas created by beloved artist Sir Quentin Blake (himself a master scribbler), create a funny, ridiculously-encouraging kids' drawing book that proves that you can laugh and draw at the same time. Including: 106 page book an artist-quality sketch pen two watercolour pencils. Make, experiment and play with KLUTZ . What is Klutz? Klutz is a premium brand of book-based activity kits, designedto inspire creativity in every child. Our unique combination of crystal-clear instructions, custom tools and materials, and hearty helpings of humor is 100% guaranteed to kick-start creativity. Super-clear instructions Open-ended Creativity Rewarding Reading Skills to Build On Everything You Need

All Join In

All Join In

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 09/05/1998

A musical interpretation of some of Quentin Blake's favourite stories including All Join In , Mr Magnolia , Mrs Armitage on Wheels , Quentin Blake's Nursery Rhymes , ABC and The Dancing Frog .

Clown

Clown

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 02/04/1998

* INTERNATIONAL BOLOGNA RAGAZZI AWARD WINNER 1996 * SMARTIES BOOK PRIZE CATEGORY WINNER 1996 * KATE GREENAWAY MEDAL SHORTLIST TITLE 1996 'Missing: a speedy little clown with carroty fingers, blue and white trainers, a green peaked cap and saucer shaped eyes. Have you seen him anywhere?'

The Puffin Book of Nonsense Verse

The Puffin Book of Nonsense Verse

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/10/1996

Ever eaten Poodle Strudel? Slain a Jabberwock? Bathed in Irish Stew? Quentin Blake is one of the best loved of children's illustrators. In this brilliant book he has selected and illustrated his favourite comic verse, making it pure entertainment for nonsense-lovers of all ages. His unique style of drawing brings a new perspective to every poem. Classic writers such as Lewis Carroll and Edward Lear are combined with more contemporary talents such as Roger McGough, Margaret Mahy and Russell Hoban. With fifteen wonderfully absurd sections, including Distracting Creatures, Sticky Ends, I Wish I Were a Jelly Fish, A Recipe for Indigestion and Chortling and Galumphing, here is a delightful collection of the topsy-turvy, the fantastical, the anarchic, the illogical and the utterly wonderful.

Cockatoos

Cockatoos

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 17/02/1994

When eccentric Professor Dupont tries to track down his troupe of brightly-coloured cockatoos, they're always just one step ahead of him. This counting book won the 1992 Smarties Children's Choice Award.

All Join In

All Join In

Author: Quentin Blake Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/02/1992

'And if Ferdinand decides to make a chocolate fudge banana cake What do we do? For goodness sake! We ALL JOIN IN!' This book is a rumbustious, rollicking and above all noisy collection of seven exuberant poems, perfect for chanting aloud, that are brilliantly illustrated by the incomparable Quentin Blake. The collection includes 'All Join In', 'The Hooter Song', 'Nice Weather for Ducks' and 'Sorting Out the Kitchen Pans'. Who coud possibly resist?

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