Richard Platt (born 15 April 1953) is a British writer of nonfiction and information books and multimedia works, primarily for children.
The British people, or the Britons, are the citizens of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, the British Overseas Territories, and the Crown dependencies. British nationality law governs modern British citizenship and nationality, which can be acquired, for instance, by descent from British nationals. When used in a historical context, "British" or "Britons" can refer to the Celtic Britons, the indigenous inhabitants of Great Britain and Brittany, whose surviving members are the modern Welsh people, Cornish people, and Bretons. It may also refer to citizens of the former British Empire.
Platt was born in Northumberland, England. He started writing when aged 27 with how-to articles and books about photography. By 1992 he had begun writing non-fiction books for children, initially collaborating with Stephen Biesty in a successful series that capitalized on the illustrator's facility for cross-sectional drawings. Since then, Richard Platt has gone on to complete some 100 books for UK publishers Oxford University Press, Kingfisher, Dorling Kindersley and Walker Books (Candlewick Press in the U.S.). Most have been for children and young people, though he also writes books for adults on maritime themes, especially smuggling.
Northumberland is a county in North East England. The northernmost county of England, it borders Cumbria to the west, County Durham and Tyne and Wear to the south and the Scottish Borders to the north. To the east is the North Sea coastline with a 64 miles (103 km) path. The county town is Alnwick, although the County council is based in Morpeth.
Stephen Biesty is a British illustrator. He was born in Coventry and grew up in Leicestershire. In 1979 he joined Loughborough College of Art and Design where he did an arts foundation course. In 1980 he moved to Brighton Polytechnic to gain a BA Hons in Graphic Design specialising in illustration, focusing on historical and architectural drawings. After graduating from Brighton with a first class degree, Biesty went on to gain an MA in Graphic Design at the City of Birmingham Polytechnic, working further in historical reconstruction.
Oxford University Press (OUP) is the largest university press in the world, and the second oldest after Cambridge University Press. It is a department of the University of Oxford and is governed by a group of 15 academics appointed by the vice-chancellor known as the delegates of the press. They are headed by the secretary to the delegates, who serves as OUP's chief executive and as its major representative on other university bodies. Oxford University has used a similar system to oversee OUP since the 17th century. The Press is located on Walton Street, opposite Somerville College, in the suburb Jericho.
One of Platt's famous books is Pirate Diary: The Journal of Jake Carpenter , illustrated by Chris Riddell (Walker, 2001), a 64-page first-person journal. He won the annual Blue Peter Book Award in category Best Book with Factsand Riddell won the annual Kate Greenaway Medal for children's book illustration, the first "information book" to win since 1975. Platt, Riddell, and Walker had inaugurated the Diary series in 1999 with Castle Diary: The Journal of Tobias Burgess, Page, which Platt calls it "my first attempt at fiction". Riddell's work was highly commended for the Greenaway Medal and it was a commercial success. Walker markets the 2011 matching set as "nonfiction".
Pirate Diary: The Journal of Jake Carpenter is an account of the pirate life cast as the journal of a young cabin boy, written by Richard Platt and illustrated by Chris Riddell. It was published by Walker in 2001, two years after Castle Diary, also by Platt and Riddell. Platt continued the "Diary" series with illustrator David Parkins.
Chris Riddell, is a British illustrator and occasional writer of children's books and a political cartoonist for the Observer. He has won three Kate Greenaway Medals, the British librarians' annual award for the best-illustrated children's book, and two of his works were commended runners-up, a distinction dropped after 2002. Books that he wrote or illustrated have won three Nestlé Smarties Book Prizes and have been silver or bronze runners-up four times. On 9 June 2015 he was appointed the UK Children's Laureate.
The Blue Peter Book Awards are a set of literary awards for children's books conferred by the BBC television programme Blue Peter. They were inaugurated in 2000 for books published in 1999. The Awards have been managed by reading charity, Booktrust, since 2006. As of 2013, there are two award categories: Best Story and Best Book with Facts.
Pirate Diary is the story of an apprentice sailor impressed by pirates to serve as cabin boy. He sees the good, the bad and the ugly, which educates the reader on historical issues of piracy. That is consistent with most of Platt's books, except for the first-person fictionalisation.
Impressment, colloquially "the press" or the "press gang", is the taking of men into a military or naval force by compulsion, with or without notice. Navies of several nations used forced recruitment by various means. The large size of the British Royal Navy in the Age of Sail meant impressment was most commonly associated with Britain. It was used by the Royal Navy in wartime, beginning in 1664 and during the 18th and early 19th centuries as a means of crewing warships, although legal sanction for the practice can be traced back to the time of Edward I of England. The Royal Navy impressed many merchant sailors, as well as some sailors from other, mostly European, nations. People liable to impressment were "eligible men of seafaring habits between the ages of 18 and 55 years". Non-seamen were impressed as well, though rarely.
Platt continued the series of 64-page first-person journals with Walker and illustrator David Parkins. After Egyptian Diary: The Journal of Nakht (2005) and Roman Diary: The Journal of Iliona of Mytilini, who was captured and sold as a slave in Rome, AD 107 (2009), he calls Roman Diary the "fourth and final book in the Diary series".
David Alan Parkins is a British cartoonist and illustrator who has worked for D.C. Thomson, publisher of The Beano and The Dandy. Now based in Canada, he illustrates children's picture books.
Each Diary was published in a U.S. hardcover edition by Candlewick Press within the calendar year.
The Carnegie Medal is a British literary award that annually recognizes one outstanding new book for children or young adults. It is conferred upon the author by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP). CILIP calls it "the UK's oldest and most prestigious book award for children's writing" and claims that writers call it "the one they want to win".
The Randolph Caldecott Medal annually recognizes the preceding year's "most distinguished American picture book for children", beginning with 1937 publications. It is awarded to the illustrator by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association (ALA). The Caldecott and Newbery Medals are the most prestigious American children's book awards.
The Kate Greenaway Medal is a British literary award that annually recognises "distinguished illustration in a book for children". It is conferred upon the illustrator by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) which inherited it from the Library Association.
David Almond FRSL is a British author who has written several novels for children and young adults from 1998, each one receiving critical acclaim.
Helen Sonia Cooper is a British illustrator and an author of children's literature.
Candlewick Press, established in 1991 and located in Somerville, Massachusetts, is part of the Walker Books group. The logo depicting a bear carrying a candle is based on Walker Books's original logo. Candlewick is operated by its employees, including over 100 staff members in Somerville, MA and more than 150 authors and illustrators.
Cyril Walter Hodges was an English artist and writer best known for illustrating children's books and for helping to recreate Elizabethan theatre. He won the annual Greenaway Medal for British children's book illustration in 1964.
Michael Foreman is a British author and illustrator, one of the best-known and most prolific creators of children's books. He won the 1982 and 1989 Kate Greenaway Medals for British children's book illustration and he was a commended runner up five times.
Shirley Hughes, is an English author and illustrator. She has written more than fifty books, which have sold more than 11.5 million copies, and has illustrated more than two hundred. As of 2007 she lives in London.
Janet Ahlberg, née Janet Hall, and Allan Ahlberg were a British married couple who created many children's books, including picture books that regularly appear at the top of "most popular" lists for public libraries. They worked together for 20 years until Janet died of cancer in 1994. Allan wrote the books and Janet illustrated them. Allan Ahlberg has also written dozens of books with other illustrators.
Robert Donald Graham, better known as Bob Graham, is an Australian author and illustrator of picture books, primarily for very young children.
Anthony Edward Tudor Browne is a British writer and illustrator of children's books, primarily picture books, with fifty titles to his name. For his lasting contribution as a children's illustrator he won the biennial international Hans Christian Andersen Award in 2000, the highest recognition available to creators of children's books. From 2009 to 2011 he was Children's Laureate.
John Burningham was an English author and illustrator of children's books, especially picture books for young children. He lived in north London with his wife Helen Oxenbury, another illustrator. His last published work was a husband-and-wife collaboration, There's Going to Be a New Baby, written by John and illustrated by Helen for "ages 2+".
Patrick James Lynch, known professionally as P. J. Lynch, is an Irish artist and illustrator of children's books. He won both the 1995 and 1997 Kate Greenaway Medals from the British Library Association, recognising the year's best children's book illustration by a British subject.
The Clarice Bean series is a series of children's books written and illustrated by the English author Lauren Child from 1999. The main character and narrator is Clarice Bean and the stories feature her challenges navigating the complex ethical and social questions children deal with at school and at home.
Russell Ayto is an English illustrator of children's books including many picture books.
Jon Klassen is a Canadian writer and illustrator of children's books and an animator. He won both the American Caldecott Medal and the British Kate Greenaway Medal for children's book illustration, recognizing the 2012 picture book This Is Not My Hat, which he also wrote. He is the first person to win both awards for the same work.
Catherine Rayner is an Edinburgh-based British illustrator and writer of children's books. She was born in Harrogate in 1982, and grew up in Boston Spa, later studying at Leeds College of Art and Edinburgh College of Art.