We are very sad to announce that our patron, former colleague and friend, Myra Barrs, died on 24 October 2023.
Myra was Director of what was then the Centre for Language in Primary Education, now Centre for Literacy in Primary Education (CLPE), where all of the Love my books team worked during an extraordinary period of educational development in the area of children’s literacy learning.
The Guardian obituary linked here is from Sue Ellis, who became Director of CLPE after Myra, and gives a full and moving account the life and work of this extraordinary woman.
We are deeply sad to lose our friend and colleague.
Former Children’s Laureate, writer, poet, broadcaster, Professor at Goldsmiths College, Michael’s books include picture books We’re Going on a Bear Hunt and This is our House, children’s novels including Uncle Gobb and the Dread Shed, poetry for example A Great Big Cuddle, one of Our top 10 poetry books and Michael Rosen’s A-Z of Poetry from Agard to Zephaniah, and a book for parents Good ideas, how to be your child’s best teacher www.michaelrosen.co.uk https://www.facebook.com/michael.rosen.5496
Award winning children’s author, SF Said won the Smarties prize for Varjak Paw , the Blue Peter Award for The Outlaw Varjak Paw and was nominated for the 2014 Guardian prize for children’s fiction for his book Phoenix. In 2024 his latest book Tyger was voted Book of the Year.
Visit SF Said’s website http://www.sfsaid.com/
Click here for link to a trailer about Phoenix.
Read about the books which influenced SF Said as a child
Award winning author for children and young people, winning the Carnegie and Whitbread prizes within the UK. International prizes include the Hans Andersen award in 2010, the most prestigious prize in children’s literature.
David’s books include: Skellig, The Boy who Climbed into the Moon , My Dad is a Birdman and The Boy who Swam with Piranhas
Visit David Almond on Facebook.
An award winning illustrator and writer of very popular picture books, Mini has won the Kate Greenaway Medal and the Smarties Book Prize. Her picture books include Traction Man is Here! , Space Dog, Toys in Space, Biscuit Bear, Egg Drop, and The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon.
A Headteacher and National Leader of Education, Julian worked in early years education for the last two decades with a particular focus on young children’s communication and early literacy. Julian has a doctorate in education (EdD).
Julian is was Headteacher at Sheringham Nursery School; see the Teaching School Programme at www.sheringham-nur.org.uk
In 2023 Julian received a CBE and now works for Ofsted
You can follow him @juliangrenier
Jessica Souhami’s books are exquisitely illustrated and mainly retellings of traditional stories. She was formerly a puppeteer, making shadow puppets and bringing traditional stories to life.
Her first book was The Leopard’s Drum, a story from West Africa and one of Our top 10 folk and fairy tales. Her other books include Foxy! , No Dinner and Sausages. Her new picture book, Honk, Honk! Hold Tight! is one of our Top 10 new picture books and tells the traditional and very funny folktale of the princess who will not laugh.
Marilyn is the founder of the Norfolk Children’s Book Centre, a wonderful independent bookshop. She works with schools to develop library provision, provides support for National conferences, has judged National book awards and writes reviews for The Bookseller and other publications. In recognition of her work she has recently become a Fellow of the English Association.
Marilyn is passionate about Reading for Pleasure and this is central to her work with schools and parents.
Chris Riddell is the current children’s laureate. He is a prolific illustrator with a distinctive detailed style. He has collaborated with a number of writers for children including Neil Gaiman and another of our patrons, Michael Rosen illustrating A Great Big Cuddle: Poems for the Very Young. Chris is a renowned political cartoonist.
Chris is a highly successful, award winning writer in his own right and his solo work includes the Goth Girl and Ottoline series. The first Goth Girl novel won the Costa Children’s Book Award in 2013. Other awards include the prestigious Kate Greenaway Medal for illustration which he has won three times; most recently in 2016 for The Sleeper and the Spindle with Neil Gaiman.
Chitra Soundar is a writer and storyteller who draws inspiration from the ancient epics and stories of India to write picture books and young fiction. Her Farmer Falgu titles were included in the TES list of “50 Books to diversify your class reading” list. Recently, A Jar of Pickles and a Pinch of Justice has been shortlisted for the Surrey Libraries Children’s Book Award.
Lovemybooks were delighted to include Pattan’s Pumpkin in our selection of stories about ‘Our World’ launched in March 2017. See our activity page here: http://www.lovemybooks.co.uk/pattans-pumpkin. Pattan’s Pumpkin is now also part of the 2017 CLPE Power of Reading programme and the October 2017 book of the month for Read Across America.
Chitra’s new book with Poonam Mistry coming soon is You’re safe with me a stunning and beautifully written bedtime story published by Lantana books (in May 2018). Website: www.chitrasoundar.com
Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/ChitraSoundarAuthor
Joseph’s poems have been published in several Macmillan anthologies including Green Glass Beads edited by Jacqueline Wilson. Joseph has been a guest poet on Cbeebies Rhyme Rocket where he was beamed up from ‘The Rhyme Rock’ to perform his Bug Poem and has featured alongside Michael Rosen and Valerie Bloom on Radio 4’s Poetry Playtime. His debut children’s collection Werewolf Club Rules is published by Frances Lincoln and was the winner of the 2015 CLPE CLiPPA Poetry Award. His collection for older readers Overheard in a Tower Block was long-listed for the 2018 Carnegie Medal. He recently finished filming ‘Teach Poetry’ a 10 part BBC online series that aims to make the writing of poetry fun and accessible to all.
In addition, Joseph has written two wonderful picture books, Luna Loves Library Day with Fiona Lumbers and If All the World Were illustrated by Alison Colpoys included in our Top 10 picturebooks 2018.
In 2022 Joseph became Children’s Laureate.
Imogen Russell Williams.
Imogen is a children’s literature critic writing for the Guardian, the Metro and the Times Literary Supplement, and a co-presenter of Down the Rabbit Hole, a children’s book show broadcast monthly on Resonance FM. She has also written a non-fiction title for 5-8-year-olds, The Big Book of the UK, which is published by Ladybird.
Frank Cottrell Boyce
Frank is an award-winning screen writer and novelist. He won the Carnegie Medal for Millions and the Guardian fiction prize for The Unforgotten Coat. He was commissioned to write the sequel to Ian Fleming’s Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and collaborated with Danny Boyle to create the storyline for the 2012 Olympic opening ceremony in which children’s books had a central role. He is a strong advocate for the importance of children’s books and reading for pleasure.
Sonia is Head Teacher at St Matthew’s CE Primary School, in Nechells, Birmingham: the first winner of the Open University/UK Literacy Association Whole School Reading for Pleasure School of the Year. She is passionate about evidence-based reading for pleasure practices, and places these at the heart of the school.
Sonia has run an OU/UKLA Teachers’ Reading Group for two years and is an advisor for the OU/UKLA Research Rich Pedagogies website. She has spoken at various conferences about Reading for Pleasure, including Peters Love Literacy and ResearchED. Sonia is a co-opted member of the UKLA National Council, representing the OU Teacher Reading Groups.