Julia Donaldson is one of the UK’s most popular children’s authors. Her books - including The Gruffalo and Room on the Broom – have won many prizes and are perennial bestsellers around the world and Room on the Broom was recently the number one bestselling children’s picture book in America. She is also the author of many songs, plays and novels including the award-winning Running on the cracks for teenagers, the Princess Mirror-Belle stories and The Giants and the Joneses. In 2011 Julia was appointed Children’s Laureate and received an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for her services to literature.  She has recently undertaken a tour performing in libraries from John O’Groats to Lands End to publicise the current plight of libraries in the UK.

Axel Scheffler moved to the UK from Germany to study at the Bath College of Art. His career as an illustrator of children’s books began more than 22 years ago; since then Axel has achieved worldwide acclaim and his books have been translated into over forty languages. He has worked with a variety of authors, illustrating fiction as well as picture books. His first book with Julia Donaldson, A Squash and a Squeeze, was published in 1993, and has been followed by bestselling and award winning favourites, including The Gruffalo and Stick Man. Axel recently illustrated a 60th anniversary edition of TS Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats and is the illustrator of Royal Mail’s official Christmas stamps 2012. Axel lives in London with his family.

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