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Mary Hoffman - Author

About the Author

Mary Hoffman has written around 90 books for children. Amazing Grace, commended for the Kate Greenaway medal, has sold over 1.5 million copies. Its sequel, Grace & Family, was among Junior Education 's Best Books of 1995 and shortlisted for the Sheffield Libraries Book Award 1996. Mary lives in Oxfordshire.

 

You can read her contributions to The History Girls blog by clicking here.

 

Mary Hoffman's Ten Things You Didn't Know About Me:


I had my appendix taken out by Enid Blyton's husband! (Fortunately he was a surgeon)

My first book was read in manuscript by Richard Adams, author of Watership Down and he suggested sending it to his publishers, Rex Collings, after a dozen others had turned it down. They took it.
 
I didn't change my surname when I got married.

Amazing Grace and Boundless Grace (which is what Grace and Family is called in the US) were both turned into musical plays and performed in Minneapolis in 1995 and 1998.

When I was a little girl, I wanted to be a garage mechanic.

I didn't learn to drive until I was over fifty.

My husband is half-Indian. His mother was a Parsee, born in Bangalore.

One of my great-grandfathers was German, another Irish.

I am learning Italian and would love to have a house in Italy.

I never wear or own anything blue.

 

Photo by Jess Barber (©Jess Barber)

Featured books by Mary Hoffman

Other books by Mary Hoffman

The Great Big Book of Families

The Great Big Book of Families

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 25/09/2020

The Great Big Book of Families introduces children to the fact that not all families look the same. Featuring funny artwork and wonderfully accessible text this book celebrates each family in its own unique and wonderful way. What is a family? Once, it was said to be a father, mother, boy, girl, cat and dog living in a house with a garden. But as times have changed, families have changed too, and now there are almost as many kinds of families as colours of the rainbow. From a mum and dad or single parent to two mums or two dads, from a mixed-race family to children with different mums and dads, to families with a disabled member. This is a fresh, optimistic look through children's eyes at today's wide variety of family life: from homes, food, ways of celebrating, schools and holidays to getting around, jobs and housework, from extended families, languages and hobbies to pets and family trees. The is a brilliant introduction for children to all family types great and small.

The Great Big Brain Book

The Great Big Brain Book

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: Hardback Release Date: 03/03/2020

The Great Big Brain Book introduces children to what the human brain is all about. Each spread features humorous, bright and engaging artwork, accompanied by accessible yet informative text on the human brain. Get ready to uncover everything you ever wanted to know about the human brain. Your brain is absolutely amazing! They are responsible for absolutely every single thing we do. Every time we breathe, or walk or talk or eat, it's all because of our brilliant brains! When we feel happy or sad, when we drop something, when we run or draw - none of this would be possible without our fantastic brains. Find out how our brains work, how they control the rest of the body and how they change over time. From how they create our memories, to how they help us learn new things and what happens to them when we are asleep, great ready to uncover lots of fascinating facts about the brain. And don't forget to look out for the friendly cat on every page, helping us learn all about our wonderful brains!

Pirate Baby

Pirate Baby

Author: Mary Hoffman, Ros Asquith Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 08/08/2019

Shiver me timbers, said the Captain. It's a baby! When the crew of pirate ship Ramshackle find a tiny baby adrift on the high seas, they are a bit flummoxed. Even more so, when they discover it's a baby girl. The adventures that follow in this rollicking tale are full of laughter and surprises, as the pirates sew nappies, make baby clothes out of pirate shirts and even a toy squid out of pirate gloves for the new arrival. The pirates won't give up their baby - not even to the women pirates who pass close by. And when a huge sea monster appears, it's baby Isla who saves the day, to become a true Pirate Baby.

The Great Big Book of Life

The Great Big Book of Life

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: Hardback Release Date: 04/03/2019

The Great Big Book of Life a glorious, diverse celebration of human life, from birth to death, by Mary Hoffman and Ros Asquith. Featuring funny artwork and wonderfully sensitive and accessible text this book is a must have for children everywhere to learning everything they need to know about the story of life. The sixth title in the Great Big Book series explores every stage of human life. From birth to starting nursery, being a teenager to becoming an adult, from work to relationships, homes and jobs, to aging illness and death. This universal but challenging topic is dealt with Mary Hoffman and Ros Asquith's trademark sensitivity and humour and inclusivity. This is the perfect introduction for children to the huge topic of life and is sure to answer many of the question they have.

The Great Big Book of Friends

The Great Big Book of Friends

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: Hardback Release Date: 28/03/2018

What is a friend? Can a pet be a friend? Are you friends with your brothers and sisters? What if you don't have any friends? A wonderful celebration of all kinds of friendship, from best friends to groups of friends to toys that feel like friends, this truly inclusive book is a great way to start a conversation with children about what makes a good friend. From the author and illustrator team behind The Great Big Book of Families and The Great Big Book of Feelings, this diverse celebration of friendship is perfect for both the home and the classroom.

Smile

Smile

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 09/01/2018

A gorgeous historical novel following the fictional life of the young woman who would become Leonardo Da Vinci's greatest work. Renaissance Italy is a world of riches open to any man who dares to conquer it. In the life of young Lisa the doors to this world remain closed. Promised in her youth to a widower as a loving wife and mother, she is resigned to an unremarkable existence clinging only to the memory of being Lovely Lisa to the now great Leonardo Da Vinci. But when their paths cross again her portrait will become his masterpiece and her smile will capture the imagination of the world. Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant or dyslexic readers aged 13+

Pirate Baby

Pirate Baby

Author: Mary Hoffman, Ros Asquith Format: Hardback Release Date: 07/09/2017

Shiver me timbers, said the Captain. It's a baby! When the crew of pirate ship Ramshackle find a tiny baby adrift on the high seas, they are a bit flummoxed. Even more so, when they discover it's a baby girl. The adventures that follow in this rollicking tale are full of laughter and surprises, as the pirates sew nappies, make baby clothes out of pirate shirts and even a toy squid out of pirate gloves for the new arrival. The pirates won't give up their baby - not even to the women pirates who pass close by. And when a huge sea monster appears, it's baby Isla who saves the day, to become a true Pirate Baby.

First Bible Story Book

First Bible Story Book

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: eBook Release Date: 01/03/2017

In this beautifully illustrated picture book 13 specially selected stories from both the Old and New Testaments are retold for the very young. Mary Hoffman's lively retellings preserve all the mystery wonder and excitement of the Bible while the charming illustrations by Julie Downing bring the best-loved characters and events to life. Each page provides many opportunities for shared discussion. Young children can follow the stories in pictures while an adult reads aloud. Produced in careful consultation with religious advisers A First Bible Story Book is an entertaining and delightful introduction to the teachings of the Bible.

Lost and Found

Lost and Found

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/02/2017

A Tale of Two Houses * Neighbours * Lost and Found * Fair Pay * The Jealous Brother * Sowing and Growing * Come to the Party * Forgiveness Mary Hoffman retells eight parables showing how Jesus used storytelling to explain God's idea of truth, fairness and love. With beautiful, atmospheric illustrations by Jackie Morris, this is a perfect introduction to the teachings of Jesus.

Tilt

Tilt

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/01/2017

Pisa, 1299. In the male-dominated world of Renaissance Italy, Netta is an ambitious young woman and the last in the line of a great family of sculptors and stone-carvers. Determined to throw off the shackles of marriage, Netta sets out to take up her family's legacy and work on fixing the city's leaning tower. Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 12+

The Great Big Book of Feelings

The Great Big Book of Feelings

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/05/2016

The Great Big Book of Feelings allows children to explore how they're feeling in a safe and judgement free environment. Featuring funny artwork and wonderfully sensitive and accessible text this book celebrates each emotion for what it is and encourages children to discuss how they're feeling instead of bottling it all up. How are you feeling today? Happy? Sad? Excited? Scared? We all experience lots of different emotions. Sometimes we can feel angry or silly, and sometimes we might feel jealous or upset. There are even times when we might feel lonely or worried. However you feel, sharing and talking about your feelings will make you feel better. This fresh, optimistic look at all the feelings we experience explores feelings in family life, at school and everywhere with warmth, wit and sensitivity. Featuring lots of different children in various situations, brief text captions and questions and plenty of humour, this is the go to book to learn about feelings.

David

David

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: Paperback Release Date: 23/04/2016

Shakespeare's Ghost

Shakespeare's Ghost

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 23/04/2016

It's 1610 and Jacobean London is full of dangers, from the plague to plots and revolutions.For William Shakespeare, life has taken an unexpected turn: one that will transform his writing. Haunted by a familiar spirit, he is urged to include more and more paranormal events and characters in his work.Meanwhile, Ned Lambert, a young player in Shakespeare's company, The King's Men, is having inexplicable experiences of his own, with a beautiful and elusive woman in green who is not of this world. Now a man on and off stage, Ned is caught between fears and temptations. The poet is his friend, as is the popular young Prince of Wales, but is the mysterious woman he sees friend or foe?

Amazing Grace Anniversary Edition

Amazing Grace Anniversary Edition

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: Hardback Release Date: 03/09/2015

Grace loves to act out stories. Sometimes she plays the leading part, sometimes she is 'a cast of thousands.' When her school decides to perform Peter Pan, Grace is longing to play Peter, but her classmates say that Peter was a boy, and besides, he wasn't black... But Grace's Ma and Nana tell her she can be anything she wants if she puts her mind to it.

Apple of Sodom

Apple of Sodom

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: eBook Release Date: 24/04/2015

Emily Crawford, a young American wife and mother, seeks a long-overdue self-respect in this absorbing and dramatic portrait of an expatriate family experi-encing life in an exotic Arab culture at the start of the 1960s. Revelatory episodes unfold against the entertainments of the well-to-do and influential, among the lives of ordinary citizens, and during explorations of ancient cities in the Holy Land and beyond.

The Great Big Green Book

The Great Big Green Book

Author: Mary Hoffman Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/03/2015

Think of the future. Can you imagine our planet as beautiful as it used to be? You could be the one to help make it beautiful again, with the things you do and the ideas you have. Your planet needs YOU! Join authors Ros Asquith and Mary Hoffman as they explain what we need for life on Earth and show us the importance of the rainforests and the oceans. In this bumper book of environmentally friendly ideas, they explain that we need to look after our planet, showing how some of the things we take for granted are running out, and how we have polluted so much our planet. As well as facts about our planet, the book is full of brilliant action plans to help save our planet, including ideas for saving water, saving energy, recycling, repairing, growing seasonal food, cooking fresh food, saving on packing, asking questions... and thinking of new inventions and big ideas. This is the eco-friendly guide to helping save the planet that all young children can learn from!