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Michael Morpurgo - Author

About the Author

Michael Morpurgo has written over 90 books and has an unparalleled reputation in the world of children's books. His books have been adapted for the cinema, TV and theatre and he has won numerous awards including Children's Book Award, Whitbred Children's Book Award and the Smarties Prize.

Michael Morpurgo is, in his own words, "oldish, married with three children, and a grandfather six times over." After schools in London, Sussex and Canterbury (one of which was horrible enough to inspire him to describe it obliquely in The Butterfly Lion), he went on to London University to study English and French, followed by a job in a primary school in Kent. It was there that he discovered what he wanted to do. "We had to read the children a story every day and my lot were bored by the book I was reading. I decided I had to do something and told them the kind of story I used to tell my kids - it was like a soap opera, and they focussed on it. I could see there was magic in it for them, and realised there was magic in it for me."

Living in Devon, listening to Mozart, and working with children have provided most of the stimulae Michael needs to discover and write his stories. He spends about half his life mucking out sheds with the children, feeding sheep or milking cows; the other half he spends dreaming up and writing stories.

Michael Morpurgo, former Children's Laureate and author of bestsellers such as War Horse and Why The Whales Came, is the inaugural President of the Historical Writers Association beginning in Autumn 2011. The Historical Writers' Association (www.thehwa.co.uk) will celebrate its first anniversary in October.  It was founded to bring social and professional support to writers of historical fiction and non-fiction, publishers, agents and booksellers, all bound both by their common interest in historical books and by the sense of community that comes from a shared obsession.

STOP PRESS: The Harrogate History Festival

Author of War Horse and over 130 books, and much-loved by readers of all ages, Michael Morpurgo will be at the Old Swan Hotel in Harrogate on Friday 23 October. Prepare to be inspired! Click here to find out more.

Featured books by Michael Morpurgo

Other books by Michael Morpurgo

The Puffin Keeper

The Puffin Keeper

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 08/07/2021

It was Benjamin Postlethwaite's job all his long life to make sure the light shone brightly high up in the lighthouse on Puffin Island. Not once in all his years as the lighthouse keeper had he ever let his light go out. But sometimes even the brightest light on a lighthouse cannot save a ship. This is a story of a life-changing friendship, a lost puffin, and a lonely artist. It's the story of an entire lifetime, and how one event can change a life forever. From masterful storyteller, Michael Morpurgo, and world-class illustrator, Benji Davies, comes a magical new story. This truly beautiful tale will enchant readers of all ages.

The Dancing Bear

The Dancing Bear

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 10/05/2021

A gentle and deeply moving story of a young girl and her bear, told with great charm by the nation's favourite storyteller, Michael Morpugo. High in the mountains, in a tiny village, an abandoned bear cub is adopted by a lonely orphan child. Soon they are inseparable, beloved by the whole village - safe, until the arrival of a glamorous film crew who need a dancing bear...

Cool!

Cool!

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 10/05/2021

Michael Morpurgo's inspiring new story of Robbie, a boy in a coma - victim of a car accident. Locked inside his own head, able to hear but not move or speak, Robbie tries to keep himself from slipping ever deeper into unconsciousness. Robbie, football fan and animal lover, runs after his dog Lucky one day when he chases a cat and is hit by a car. Unconscious, Robbie lies in hospital, unable to speak, move or eat. But he can hear; he is aware, even though his family and friends don't know this. Inside his head, we hear Robbie's thoughts; on his Mum and sister, why his parents are separated. His friends and family try desperately to reach him - even Zola, his favourite Chelsea footballer, comes to see him. And still Robbie can't 'wake up'. Until one day, against hospital rules, Dad brings Lucky into the hospital. Can Lucky bring Robbie back to life?

The Butterfly Lion

The Butterfly Lion

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 10/05/2021

ILLUSTRATED BY CHRISTIAN BIRMINGHAM. A lyrical and moving tale of a young boy growing up in Africa, and his lifelong friendship with a white lion. All my life I'll think of you, I promise I will. I won't ever forget you. Bertie rescues an orphaned white lion cub from the African veld. They are inseparable until Bertie is sent to boarding school far away in England and the lion is sold to a circus. Bertie swears that one day they will see one another again, but it is the butterfly lion which ensures that their friendship will never be forgotten.

Gentle Giant

Gentle Giant

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/05/2021

A powerful folktale about a lonely giant who lives by a beautiful lake. When he saves a girl from drowning, the giant finds the love and courage to save the lake from destruction. On a small island way out in the middle of a silver lake there once lived a sad young man. He was sad because he had grown up into a giant of a man, very big, very strong and very frightening. Because of this, no one liked to go near him. So his only friends were the wild creatures that lived all around him. Then one day, he saves a girl from drowning, a girl in a wide-brimmed straw hat. Little does he know how she is going to change his life forever. Michael Morpurgo draws on traditional storytelling to weave a tale of extraordinary relevance to our own world today. A story of compassion, and love, and a simple belief in the healing powers of nature.

Mr Nobody's Eyes

Mr Nobody's Eyes

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/05/2021

A tale of fun and friendship from former Children's Laureate and author of War Horse, Michael Morpurgo. Harry heard the key turn in the lock. He had already made up his mind to run. Harry is in trouble at school, and doesn't like his stepfather or the new baby. Then he befriends Ocky, a chimpanzee from the circus. Ocky's owner won't mind if Harry borrows her for a bit, will he? But then Harry's stepfather and the police find out. Harry and the chimp are soon on the run! A gripping and poignant animal adventure from the master storyteller of An Eagle in the Snow, Listen to the Moon, Shadow, and An Elephant in the Garden. Michael Morpurgo has written more than a hundred books and won the Whitbread Award, the Smarties Award, the Circle of Gold Award, the Children's Book Award and has been short-listed for the Carnegie Medal four times.

A Song of Gladness

A Song of Gladness

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Hardback Release Date: 29/04/2021

Travel the globe in this inspiring journey through the animal kingdom. A Song of Gladness is a timely reminder of the beauty and importance of the natural world from two of today's most celebrated children's book creators. From a blackbird in a Devon garden to leopards in the African savanna, hibernating bears and chimpanzees high in the forest canopy, A Song of Gladness reminds us all of our connection with nature, and with each other, and the urgent need for us to join together in caring for the planet and every creature in it. Former Children's Laureate and CILIP Carnegie Medal winner Sir Michael Morpurgo's beautiful story is both moving and full of hope; the illustrations from twice CILIP Kate Greenaway-winning Emily Gravett are breathtaking. This gorgeous book is a classic in the making and the perfect gift for any animal and nature lover.

Cockadoodle-Doo, Mr Sultana!

Cockadoodle-Doo, Mr Sultana!

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 16/04/2021

A rich and greedy sultan meets his match in a VERY cheeky little red rooster... Hilariously wacky tale by bestselling author of War Horse. The rich and greedy sultan loves his jewels more than anything, so when he loses a diamond button he is furious! Especially as a naughty little red rooster seems determined to keep it... A marvellously funny tale by master storyteller, Michael Morpurgo.

The Birthday Duck

The Birthday Duck

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/04/2021

The classic story of finding fun on the farm from the nation's favourite storyteller, gorgeously re-illustrated by Sam Usher. From Sir Michael Morpurgo comes a classic story of one small boy, and one very lucky duck... Sam is a city boy through and through - and isn't looking forward to his school trip to Nethercott Farm at all. But busy days of farm work, animals and learning all about nature weave their magic - and when Sam finds a duck about to be dinner, he is determined to save him. But how? This warm and magical story is gloriously brought to life by the incredible illustrative talent of Sam Usher, and is set on the real-life Nethercott Farm - a member of Farms for City Children - the charity that offers urban children from all over the country the chance to live and work together on a real farm and experience the magic of the English countryside.

Private Peaceful

Private Peaceful

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/04/2021

A stunning adaptation of Michael Morpurgo's elegaic novel of the First World War. As young Thomas Peaceful looks back over his childhood from the battlefields of the First World War, his memories are full of family life deep in the countryside. But the clock is ticking, and every moment that Tommo spends remembering how things used to be, means another moment closer to something that will change his life forever. Adapted for schools by Simon Reade from Michael Morpurgo's poignant and deeply moving novel of the First World War, the play is ideal for use in the classroom and the drama studio. The extensive resource section provides many opportunities for drama, discussion, wider reading and writing.

Arthur High King of Britain

Arthur High King of Britain

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/04/2021

An enchanting take on the legend of King Arthur from War Horse author and former Children's Laureate, Michael Morpurgo. Marooned on a sandbank, a boy faces certain death. With the sea closing in and the current about to drag him to a watery grave, his final wish is to see heaven. Waking in a strange bed, the boy meets an old man sitting by the fire with his dog. It is Arthur, the great warrior king of legend, and from his lips the boy hears of Camelot, chivalry, magic, evil and betrayal. Arthur, High King of Britain is a gripping historical adventure from the master storyteller of An Eagle in the Snow, Listen to the Moon, Shadow, and An Elephant in the Garden. Michael Morpurgo has written more than forty books and won the Whitbread Award, the Smarties Award, the Circle of Gold Award, the Children's Book Award and has been short-listed for the Carnegie Medal four times.

The Puffin Keeper

The Puffin Keeper

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Hardback Release Date: 12/11/2020

It was Benjamin Postlethwaite's job all his long life to make sure the light shone brightly high up in the lighthouse on Puffin Island. Not once in all his years as the lighthouse keeper had he ever let his light go out. But sometimes even the brightest light on a lighthouse cannot save a ship. This is a story of a life-changing friendship, a lost puffin, and a lonely artist. It's the story of an entire lifetime, and how one event can change a life forever. From masterful storyteller, Michael Morpurgo, and world-class illustrator, Benji Davies, comes a magical new story. This truly beautiful tale will enchant readers of all ages.

Grandpa Christmas

Grandpa Christmas

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/10/2020

This bestselling Christmas picture book by renowned children's author Michael Morpurgo and illustrator Jim Field, is now available in paperback for the first time. Michael Morpurgo frames his powerful message about protecting the environment in this beautiful personal story about a grandpa's wish for his granddaughter to live in a better world. This vital and timely story is paired with Jim Field's emotive illustrations in this gorgeous Christmas picture book, perfect for the whole family to share. Dearest little Mia, This Christmas, instead of a Christmas card - you'll have plenty of those - and instead of a present - you'll have plenty of those too, I am sending you a letter ... Every Christmas Mia and her family read a letter which her Grandpa wrote to her. His letter is a warm, impassioned and heartfelt wish for a better world for Mia to live in. He remembers fondly the times they spent in his garden finding frogs and worms and planting seeds. But Grandpa worries that all the things they love so much are in danger ... His letter is a hopeful plea to Mia (and to all of us) to continue to care for and protect our precious world. Michael Morpurgo is a master storyteller who has written over one hundred books and won countless awards. In 1976 Michael and his wife Clare started the charity Farms For City Children, which aims to relieve the poverty of experience of young children from inner city and urban areas. In 1999 they were awarded the MBE for their work in creating these farms and in 2006 Michael received an OBE. His novel War Horse has been adapted into a hugely successful and critically acclaimed West End play as well as a film adaptation directed by Steven Spielberg. Michael is a tireless champion for children's books and was formerly the Children's Laureate. Jim Field is an award-winning illustrator, character designer and animation director. He is perhaps best known for drawings frogs on logs in the bestselling picture book series Oi Frog! He has illustrated children's books with Kes Grey, Michelle Robinson, Rachel Bright, Jeanne Willis, Steve Cole and comedian David Baddiel. His first picture book Cats Ahoy won the Roald Dahl Funny Prize and he has been nominated for several other awards including the Kate Greenaway Award and the Sainsbury's Children's Book Award. In 2016, The Bookseller listed Jim as the 6th top selling illustrator. Jim grew up in Farborough and now lives in Paris with his wife and daughter.

War Horse picture book

War Horse picture book

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/10/2020

Michael Morpurgo's global bestselling children's book War Horse has been adapted into a picture book for the first time. Illustrated throughout, it brings the beloved children's classic to life for kids aged 5 and up. Master storyteller Michael Morpurgo has adapted his much-loved novel, War Horse, for a picture book audience. This powerful book for younger readers tells the enduring story of a friendship between a boy and his horse and is a gateway to help children understand the history and chaos of the First World War. As we move beyond centenary commemorations and continue to strive for peace across the world, War Horse remains an important book for generations to come. Review for the novel: War Horse is a story of universal suffering for a universal audience by a writer who 'has the happy knack of speaking to both child and adult readers' - Guardian Michael Morpurgo has written more than one hundred books for children and won the Whitbread Award, the Smarties Award, the Circle of Gold Award, the Children's Book Award and has been short-listed for the Carnegie Medal four times.

The Blue Nib Literary Magazine

The Blue Nib Literary Magazine

Author: Michael Morpurgo, George Szirtes Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 15/09/2020

Owl or Pussycat?

Owl or Pussycat?

Author: Michael Morpurgo Format: Hardback Release Date: 03/09/2020

When he lands a starring role in the school Christmas play of The Owl and the Pussycat, Michael is over the moon. He is going to be Owl - Too-wit-too-woo! And when his best friend, Belinda, is chosen to be Cat, Michael can't believe his luck - Miaow! But will it be all right on the night? Find out in this true story of first love and first-night nerves.

Author Info

Author's Website

https://www.michaelmorpurgo.com/

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