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Clive Gifford - Author

About the Author

Clive Gifford is an award-winning author of over 200 books specializing in engaging and entertaining non-fiction books for children and young adults. His books have garnered much praise and won Children's Choice, NAPPA Gold Star, TES Book of the Year and Smithsonian awards. Refugees was shortlisted for The British Book Awards whilst Discover the Extreme World was on the four-book shortlist for the 2012 Blue Peter Book Award. In October 2018, Clive won The Sainsbury's Children's Book Award for The Book Of Comparisons. He also won The Blue Peter Book Award 2019 for The Colours of History.

With a lifelong interest in geopolitics, ecology and the environment, Clive has authored a number of titles on ecology and global issues for Heinemann, Franklin Watts, Lonely Planet, DK and now Buster Books. Clive has contributed many articles to Encyclopaedia Britannica, appeared on radio and at live events and written hundreds of articles to a wide range of publications. He is based in Manchester.

A Q&A on This is Not a Science Book

Is your new book This is Not a Science Book a science book or what? 

Ahhh, that would be telling! I can tell you what it is not and that’s a stuffy school science textbook. It is an entertaining activities book with lots of drawing, investigating, colouring-in, project making and puzzling to be done but it does show how all around you, science is constantly happening. 

The book is packed with surprising facts and phenomena and activities to scramble your brain with visual illusions and tricks. Why not have a look yourselves, then you can tell me whether the book is out science or about fun or, a lot of both.

Where do you live?

I live in a large three-storey tumbledown house on the very edge of Manchester. It's pretty old - I think it was built in 1906 - and there always seems to be bits of it falling off! It overlooks the Mersey Valley and I can cycle through countryside and canal paths to get to the centre of Manchester.

What do you carry with you when you travel for your writing?

I always carry a notebook and several pens (I am constantly losing pens) to jot down any ideas that spring to mind. I also carry a digital camera or my smartphone to snap pictures and a tiny MP3 player to record interviews. There’s always a pack of Post-It notes in one of my pockets to mark pages of books with useful information to return to, as well.

What is your favourite children's book ever?

That is a toughie! I can give you several favourites if that is okay, starting with the ‘Golden Compass/Northern Lights’ trilogy by Phillip Pullman which I think were truly magical examples of storytelling and David Almond’s ‘Skellig’ which is a truly beautiful story.

What is your greatest extravagance?

Books. No question. Every project I work on needs lots of books to research the subject and gives me the excuse to go to the bookshop and spend, spend, spend! I haven’t counted them but I reckon I’ve got over 7,000 books all littered round my house!


Do you still buy books at shops or do you get all your facts off the internet?

The Internet is, of course, very useful especially for checking and getting the most up to date statistic or snippet but the information on there often only tells a tiny part of the whole story. For a complete picture of how or why something works or more detail, I still think books and magazines are extremely important. I visit bookshops and use libraries all the time. The libraries in my area, Trafford, are excellent and we have an amazing old bookshop over in Sharston which has more than half a million old books!

What would you like to be if you weren't a writer?

Really good question! I really would have liked to have been a rock star but was lousy at playing the guitar. The other job I would have liked was to be a documentary film-maker.

Featured books by Clive Gifford

Atlas of Football

Atlas of Football

7+ readers 9+ readers

Author: Clive Gifford Format: Paperback Release Date: 03/05/2018

Grab your football boots and get ready for the 2018 World Cup in this incredible journey around the globe! Football is enjoyed in every nation of the world by millions and millions of different people. This unbelievable round-the-world adventure is a celebration of the beautiful game that will take you through all of the planet's continents.

England Rugby Official Junior Supporters' Guide

England Rugby Official Junior Supporters' Guide

7+ readers 9+ readers 11+ readers

Author: Clive Gifford Format: Hardback Release Date: 13/08/2015

Features profiles of over 40 players, including members of the current men's, women's, Under-20 and Sevens teams, as well as some of England's greatest rugby legends. Relive England's most memorable matches, from the men's victory at Rugby World Cup 2003 to the women's at Rugby World Cup 2014. Crammed full of fun activities such as number puzzles, spot the difference and quizzes, this exciting and activity-filled book is the perfect gift for any young rugby fan.

Other books by Clive Gifford

ICC Cricket World Cup England & Wales 2019 Kids' Handbook Star players and top teams, puzzles and games, fill-in results charts

ICC Cricket World Cup England & Wales 2019 Kids' Handbook Star players and top teams, puzzles and games, fill-in results charts

Author: Clive Gifford Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/04/2019

As excitement builds in the run-up to the Cricket World Cup 2019, the official ICC Cricket World Cup England & Wales 2019 Kids' Handbook provides the perfect tournament companion for one-day cricket fans aged 7+. The book is bursting with information about the hosts, England and Wales, plus the grounds, teams profiles, superstar players, Cricket World Cup facts, stats and record breakers, as well as loads of games, quizzes and puzzles.

The Ultimate Guide to Surviving in the Wild

The Ultimate Guide to Surviving in the Wild

Author: Clive Gifford Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 21/03/2019

An absorbing, fast-paced and comprehensive guide to surviving in the wild, with a particular focus on the animals you might encounter - and want to avoid! - while you're there. Whether you're lost in the mountains, stranded in the desert, or adrift at sea, if you've read this book, you might just have a fighting chance at staying alive. Vivid photos, maps and other colourful graphics provide plenty to inspire armchair explorers. Chapters cover survival at sea, on a Pacific island, in the Outback, the Sahara Desert, the Amazon Rainforest, Polar wilderness and the Rocky Mountains. Readers are provided with information on what to do first, the key rules for survival, the animals in each habitat and how to signal for help. Feature pages highlight real-life survivors who escaped these harsh environments to inspire young explorers.

A Robot World

A Robot World

Author: Clive Gifford Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 12/03/2019

In today's wired world, robots are everywhere, from movies, in space, computer games - maybe even walking among us. Aimed at readers aged 7 to 11, this is a look at the rise of robots: how they've developed over time, from early sketches to terrifying battlebots and factory operatives, to the latest AIs running free from their workshops. Presented chronologically, this robot history will focus on landmark robots that have captured the imagination, including creations from popular culture.

The International Space Station

The International Space Station

Author: Clive Gifford Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 08/11/2018

Just what is it like living on board the International Space Station? Well, now you can find out in this fascinating book ... illustrations have a really key role ... they are technically accurate and provide true representations of the mechanics, modules and equipment on board the ISS. (Parents In Touch) What is the space station and how did it get into space? How do astronauts get there and what do they do once they're there? How do astronauts eat, sleep, or even breathe, in space? What effect does living in space have on the human body, from making you taller to losing your muscles because of zero gravity. If everything floats, then how can you go to the toilet and where does your wee and poo go? Uncover all of the answers and more in this beautifully illustrated and fun book for children. Find out what it takes to become an astronaut and about the essential science experiments that are being carried out there. Written to inspire a new generation of astronauts, Clive's detailed and fact-filled text will make you think you've visited the space station yourself. Fully illustrated by self-confessed space geek illustrator, Dan Schlitzkus, the illustrations are technically accurate and provide true representations of the mechanics, modules and equipment on board the ISS.

The Ultimate Champions League Fan Guide

The Ultimate Champions League Fan Guide

Author: Clive Gifford Format: Hardback Release Date: 04/10/2018

Get the lowdown on the most exciting annual football tournament on the planet. The Ultimate Champions League Fan Guide is an action-packed book bursting with eye-popping stats about the greatest teams and players in world football. Read all about the early years of the European Cup, discover what it takes to progress through the rounds to the final, then get all the need-to-know facts and figures about the Champions League's legendary players, from Antoine Griezmann to Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Raise the Flag Terrific flag facts, stories and trivia!

Raise the Flag Terrific flag facts, stories and trivia!

Author: Clive Gifford Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 16/08/2018

Packed full of wow-inducing facts and trivia, this colourful book offers much more than the average flag book. Find out how Lichtenstein and Haiti discovered they shared the exact same flag and which national flag was designed by a 15-year-old schoolgirl in this comprehensive and entertaining read.. Features 268 flags, including the national flag of every country in the world,an atlas-style chapter for each continent exploring the history of significant flags, and themed sections that introduce the many different types of flags, plus great moments in flag history (flags at the poles and in space for example) and how we communicate using flags. There's even a design-your-own flag activity and a fabulous flag quiz at the back of the book to help you get creative and test your flag knowledge!

Football Skills

Football Skills

Author: Clive Gifford Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 12/07/2018

Football is the world's most popular sport - globally, more than 240 million people play the game regularly. This colourful and exciting book is the essential guide to soccer, offering easy-to-follow instruction that is sure to improve the all-round play of any young football player, from passing and dribbling to shooting, defending, goalkeeping and tactics. The detailed practical advice is enhanced by spreads about the all-time great players, the FIFA World Cup and unusual versions of the sport.

1001 Really Ridiculously Silly Jokes

1001 Really Ridiculously Silly Jokes

Author: Clive Gifford Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 12/07/2018

Know any good jokes? Here are 1001 (yes, one thousand and one!) awesome ones for the whole family to enjoy! Why did the empty sandwich go to the dentist? IT NEEDED A FILLING. What do you call a 20,000-year-old joke? PRE-HYSTERICAL. With jokes galore, puns, one-liners, visual gags, play on words and hilarious illustrations. Divided into sections such as 'Hilarious Holidays', 'Teacher Titters' and 'Football Funnies', this book will never get old and will have your friends and whole family laughing. A hilarious bumper book that will captivate any child and spark an interest in reading - created by the bestselling author of Teenage Kicks and Eye Benders, and winner of the Royal Society Young People's Book Prize.

Author Info

Author's Website

http://www.clivegifford.co.uk/

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