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Trish Cooke has worked as a TV presenter, has written stage plays and has had numerous acting roles in the theatre and on screen. She is also the author of several picture books including Full, Full, Full of Love. She lives in Bradford.
As a child
Trish Cooke was born in Bradford, West Yorkshire. Her parents are from Dominica in the West Indies, so she’s “a Yorkshire lass who can speak Dominican patois”. She comes from a large family, with six sisters, three brothers, eight nephews, six nieces, three great-nieces and one great-nephew, all of whom provide her with the inspiration for her picture books: “there’s always some conversation or other going on somewhere that I can eavesdrop on – language is very important to me. I love music and rhythms and when people talk, it is as if sometimes they are actually singing. I remember Sunday mornings, the smell of saltfish and johnny cakes wafting up the stairs, Mum singing and Dad telling stories that were always ‘true’.”
As an adult
Trish attended Leeds Polytechnic and Ilkley College in 1980, where she gained a degree in performing arts. After moving to London, Trish began to write for television, contributing to the BBC’s children’s programme Playdays, which she presented for nine years. More recently, she has written scripts for the popular Tweenies show. She has written plays and scripts for the theatre, radio and television, including Eastenders. In 2001/2002 she was a BBC Writer in Residence. Trish now lives in Bradford with her partner and their two children.
As an writer
When she was pregnant with her first child, Trish decided to turn her hobby, writing, into a full-time career. “You need to have a sense of humour and imagination to write children’s stories. Adults tend to lose themselves in the seriousness of life, whereas children have a simplistic approach. My five-year-old son reads all my stories and reviews them for me. He’s my best critic.” Trish has won many awards for her children’s books. So Much won the 0–5 category of the Smarties Book Prize, the She/WH Smith’s Under-Fives Book Prize and the Kurt Maschler Award. It was also Highly Commended for the Kate Greenaway Medal and was shortlisted for both the Sheffield Children’s Book Award and the Nottinghamshire Children’s Book Award.
Things you didn't know about Trish Cooke
When she was about four or five, she sprayed what she thought was hairspray on her hair, except it was perfume and her hair dropped out! It took ages for it to grow back.
She has always like performing, and she and her sisters used to do shows for their friends and neighbours.
She first discovered how much fun writing could be when she started writing in her diary. She enjoyed exaggerating the truth!
Her first pet was a green budgie called Joey. Her big brother, Joe, fed it one of her sister Mary’s johnny cakes, and the next day it was found dead at the foot of its perch. Trish cried for days.
She can play the recorder really well.
She loves singing and used to be the singer in two ska bands.
Her book, So Much, is featured in a portrait of former Labour leader, Neil Kinnock, and his wife, which is hanging in the National Portrait Gallery – go and see if you can spot it!
Her favourite meal is rice and peas and curried chicken, with lots of fried plantain. Her favourite pudding is banoffee pie.
Her favourite place to holiday is St Lucia. She loves the white sands, the blue sea, and the peace and tranquillity.
Her favourite place to write is in front of a beautiful landscape – on a verandah in the West Indies, or looking out on hills from her office window in Yorkshire.
A tender and humorous look at modern family life, with exuberant art from the illustrator of We're Going on a Bear Hunt. Celebrate the warmth of Afro-Caribbean family life in this multiple award-winning picture book from Trish Cooke and Helen Oxenbury, illustrator of We're Going on a Bear Hunt. Mum and baby are home alone when - DING DONG! - Auntie and then Uncle and Nannie and Gran-Gran and the cousins come to visit. And they all want to hug and kiss and squeeze and eat the baby right up - because everybody loves the baby SO MUCH! With Helen Oxenbury lending her characteristic warmth and humour to a most exuberant family party, Trish Cooke's rhythmic, cumulative story captures the joy of being the baby in a large extended family - a baby who knows that he is absolutely, utterly adored.
A special 25th anniversary edition of a modern classic, this is a tender, exuberant celebration of modern family life. Mum and baby are home alone when - DING DONG! - Auntie and then Uncle and Nannie and Gran-Gran and the cousins come to visit. And they all want to hug and kiss and squeeze and eat the baby right up ... because everybody loves the baby SO MUCH! A special 25th anniversary edition of a multiple award-winning story, So Much is a celebration of family life. Helen Oxenbury's characteristically warm, funny illustrations, paired with Trish Cooke's rhythmic, cumulative story capture the joy of being a baby in a large extended family - a baby who knows that he is absolutely, utterly adored. With a foreword and gorgeous golden foil on the cover and spine, this edition is one to share and treasure.
A collection of favourite tales gathered from the many different islands of the Caribbean, one of the world's richest sources of traditional storytelling. From the very first Kingfisher to Anansi the Spider Man, these lively retellings full of humour and pathos, are beautifully retold by Trish Cooke. The book includes endnotes with a glossary, additional information as well as ideas for activities that children can do to explore the stories further.
Look Back! celebrates the relationship between a grandmother and her grandson as she tells him about her Caribbean childhood adventures in the rainforest in search of a mysterious creature called Ti Bolom. Is Grannie's Ti Bolom real or just one of her stories? This is a beguiling tale that weaves the traditional experience with a modern curiosity. An award-winning writer and illustrator have come together to create a magical children's picture book
How Anansi Got His Stories is a tale of a familiar character from many African and Caribbean tales. Anansi the trickster wants everyone to listen to his stories, but he will have to complete three challenges before he is proved worthy of the title King of Stories... This humorous story written by Trish Cooke and vividly illustrated by Anne Violet will capture your child's imagination! It has been sensitively rewritten to enable your child to read it with confidence whilst capturing the magic of the original tale. There are useful tips for parents and an engaging story map inside the book to help you and your child retell the story together. The Oxford Reading Tree Traditional Tales series includes 40 of the best known stories from all over the world, which have been passed down for generations. They are a perfect introduction to different cultures, traditions and morals. All the stories are carefully levelled to Oxford Reading Tree levels and matched to the phonic progression in Letters and Sounds enabling your children to read the stories independently. Books contain inside cover notes to support children in their reading. Help with childrens reading development is also available at www.oxfordowl.co.uk.
Mary is a brave nurse. When a war starts in the Crimea she sails across the sea to help, and even enters the battlefield! Hopscotch Histories are brand new stories in historical settings, told in under 400 words, perfect for children who are building up their reading confidence
Every Sunday, Jay Jay and his family, uncles and aunties, cousins and friends all come for Sunday dinner at Grannie's. And what a feast they have! There's plenty, plenty for everybody, and plenty of love to go around too!
Hurricane Kieron and Rusharound Ria are always in a hurry. They never walk anywhere. They always run! They go zzzzooooommm, zigga zigga, yow, yow, yow, wheeeeeeee all day long! But when Hurricane Kieron falls over, he can't rush around any more. But with paints and brushes, can he find another way to make hurricanes instead? Even if it does involve sitting still... A delightful story about running around, sitting still, and the joys of both.
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