Axel Scheffler, Illustrator extraordinaire and our Guest Editor Axel Scheffler, Illustrator extraordinaire and our Guest Editor

This month our guest editor is Axel Scheffler, illustrious illustrator and now author, who brought Julia Donaldson's first ever picture book, A Squash and a Squeeze and then the Gruffalo to life. He has now turned his talented hand to writing, creating a stunning new series of books featuring Pip and Posy. Find out more about his books which are perfect for toddlers as well as some of his childhood favourites in this special section.

Pip and Posy: The Snowy Day
Axel Scheffler
Best-selling Axel Scheffler's delightful characters Pip and Posy are back for a new adventure. The two friends love playing in the snow together until a difference of opinion causes them to start to quarrel. How will they get back to... Featured in: Baby and Toddler | 3+ readers
Format: Hardback | Released 04/10/2012
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Pip and Posy: The Big Balloon
Axel Scheffler
April 2012 Book of the Month. Best known for creating the pictures for the Gruffalo, Axel Scheffler has created a perfect story for pre-school. How can Pip's friends cheer him up when his beautiful red balloon goes POP! ? Luckily Posy... Featured in: Baby and Toddler | 3+ readers
Format: Hardback | Released 05/04/2012
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The Gruffalo
Julia Donaldson
“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... Featured in: 5+ readers | 3+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 27/08/1999
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Squash And A Squeeze
Julia Donaldson
For my family and me this is still one of THE best picture books ever published. This was Julia and Axel's first collaboration and is now years later an absolute classic. Simply told through brilliant rhyming text and beautiful illustrations... Featured in: 3+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 20/06/2004
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My First Gruffalo: Opposites
Julia Donaldson
The Gruffalo and his friends introduce the key concepts of big and small, long and short, fast and slow. Lovely images make their points strikingly in this handsome, large-format book. Click here to see more books in this series. Featured in: Baby and Toddler
Format: Board book | Released 15/04/2011
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Tabby McTat
Julia Donaldson
Best-selling author and illustrator Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler have teamed up again to create a heart-warming story about loyalty and friendship. When Tabby McTat the busker's cat gets separated from the busker he begins a new life on his... Featured in: 3+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 06/09/2010
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Room On The Broom And Other Songs (Book and CD)
Julia Donaldson
A book of nine songs and music together with an accompanying CD including her most famous Room on the Broom. Julia may well be one of the UK's best-loved picture book authors but she is also a very talented... Featured in: 3+ readers
Format: Mixed Media Product | Released 06/10/2006
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Stick Man
Julia Donaldson
Creators of The Gruffalo, best selling author/ illustrator Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler are back with another bestseller on their hands. “Stick Man lives in the family tree/ with Stick Lady love/ And his children three”. But one day Stick... Featured in: 3+ readers
Format: Hardback | Released 01/09/2008
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Reader ReviewedThe Grunts In Trouble
Philip Ardagh
Meet the Grunts! Mr and Mrs, their cat Ginger Biscuit, two donkeys Clip and Clop and Sunny, a child Mr Grunt stole off a washing line as a present for Mrs Grunt. The Grunts roam the land in a ramshackle... Featured in: 7+ readers | 9+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 06/06/2013
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Reader ReviewedThe Grunts In Trouble
Philip Ardagh
September 2012 Book of the Month. Meet the Grunts! Mr and Mrs, their cat Ginger Biscuit, two donkeys Clip and Clop and Sunny, a child Mr Grunt stole off a washing line as a present for Mrs Grunt. The Grunts... Featured in: 7+ readers | 9+ readers
Format: Hardback | Released 06/09/2012
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Zog
Julia Donaldson
Winner of the Galaxy Children's Book Award 2010. The creators of the best-selling Gruffalo have invented a delightful new character – Zog the little dragon who always... Featured in: 3+ readers
Format: Paperback | Released 01/09/2011
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Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats
T.S. Eliot
These classic cat poems which sum up all the different kinds of cats there can be are given a delightful new look by bestselling Gruffalo illustrator Axel Scheffler. Scheffler's cats are cuddly creatures with expressive eyes through which the cats... Featured in: 5+ readers
Format: Hardback | Released 01/10/2009
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The Highway Rat
Julia Donaldson
Shortlisted for the Galaxy Children's Book of the Year Award 2011 Best-selling author/ illustrator combination Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler have teamed up for another great adventure. Many of the creatures that appear in The Gruffalo feature in this rollicking... Featured in: 5+ readers | 3+ readers
Format: Hardback | Released 01/09/2011
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Axel Scheffler, Illustrator Extraordinaire, author and now our Guest Editor

Axel Scheffler Illustrator

Axel was born in Hamburg, Germany. At school he was good at art, but didn't think of a career in illustration until he won a cuddly purple cow in a drawing competition.

So began a brilliant career bringing to life in pictures the stories created by authors. Now he has become an author himself with the Pip and Posy series which are perfect for pre-schoolers and published by Nosy Crow.

pip and posy

What critics have been saying about Pip and Posy:

'Simultaneously cosy and reassuring...Perfect for one to three year olds'


'In these satisfyingly robust, colourful books Axel Scheffler, of Gruffalo fame, has created the wholly desirable pre-school world of Pip and Posy. One hopes there are more to come!'

We asked Axel to write about the books that have influenced him, especially as a child and you can read that below - we hope you enjoy discovering more about him and his beautiful books.

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Axel Scheffler's.... reminicences

I don't recall having many picture books when I was a child. Maybe there weren't many around. I had, and still have, Hirsch Heinrich - a book that my dad brought from a trip to East Germany. There were some free comics from a shoe shop and a coffee chain - I had those. I had quiet a few of 'Petzi'-books - a Danish bear with red dungarees with white dots -they were like Comic Books ,but without speech bubbles..

Axel Scheffler Illustrator books choices

I later had some Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck Comics . Followed later by Asterix. I then discovered "the Peanuts" By Charles M. Schulz . I had a Snoopy poster up in my room as a teenager. My dad had a big Time life book "The World We Live In"- I loved looking at the dinosaurs. Like many children of my generation in Germany, I loved "Jim Knopf und Lukas der Lokomotivführer" by Michael Ende, but I must admit before I had the books I watched the puppet-programme on TV by the 'Augsburger Puppenkiste". I also knew the Grimm fairy tales - my mother must have read them to me.

Axel Scheffler Illustrator books choices

I was good library user but I don't have any strong recollections of particular books. In my teen I discovered the German humorist Loriot (yes they do exist) and later FKWaechter.I was always interested in art and loved to go to museums with my dad (he never had enough time). Needless to say I loved drawing as well .In my late teen I discovered the art of cartoons. Cartoonists like Chaval ,Bosc,Sempé , Edward Gorey and Tomi Ungerer,who with his children's books was probably the single greatest influence on my own work. Later I found out about William Steig and Czech illustrators like Adolf Born and Jiri Salamoun. In the Seventies I saw big exhibitions of Tomi Ungerer,J.J. Sempé and the great Saul Steinberg - it was always really exciting to see the originals.


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