Gecko Press Blog

Welcome to a combobulation of articles from our favourite thinkers, stories from behind the scenes, lists of good books, Gecko Press news and things that amuse us from time to time.

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Q&A with Clotilde Perrin: Gotcha!

Bookshelf illustration (c) Clotilde Perrin

Clotilde Perrin is an illustrator and author living in Strasbourg, France. We asked her to tell us more about her new release, Gotcha!

Two Gecko Press books selected for White Ravens Award 2022

Bumblebee Grumblebee_cockatoo with sock on head

This year, the White Ravens contain a selection of 200 notable children’s and young adult books from 53 countries published in 37 languages. Bumblebee Grumblebee and Duck’s Backyard have both been selected.

Talking about Bumblebee Grumblebee, the judge said “Board books for the very young can sometimes feel a bit dull to adults. But not when David Elliot puts his hand to creating one.”

The books that raised me: Bookshop Day 2022 edition

This Bookshop Day, we’re celebrating booksellers around Aotearoa by asking some to share a book that was special to them growing up, a book that raised them. How do you pick just one when you’re surrounded by a treasure trove!

Book list: Books featuring disabled characters

Giana Torrez_El Paso library

We asked Giana Torrez, El Paso Library, Texas, for a list of books she likes to recommend that feature characters with disabilities—a broad topic, of course, as shown by her list that includes main characters with autism, dyslexia and physical disabilities.

Tickle My Ears series: Q&A with Jörg Mühle

first sketch for Tickle My Ears

An interview with Jörg Mühle where he discusses how he created the Tickle My Ears series, including his illustration technique and trialing version of the story with his daughter. “It was amazing. My book was working! Well, in a way. It didn’t make her go to sleep. But she really loved it.”

Duck’s Backyard: Q&A with Ulrich Hub

Ulrich Hub © Stefan Schugt

Ulrich Hub trained as an actor and now lives in Berlin, Germany. He works as a director for stage and writes plays, screenplays and children’s books, which have won numerous awards.     What inspired the story of the blind chicken and the duck with a limp? When we use these phrases in German we… Read more »

Book list: Feelings and Emotions

Emma at Nook Books

Feelings can be tough to talk about for children—even for grown ups, I always find myself recommending children’s books as a way to navigate through those complicated, scary, and overwhelming feelings. These are all picture books, and they are all great conversation starters for any age.

On orphans in children’s books

What is it about orphans in books? They are tragic, with backgrounds mysterious, bruised, like Jane Eyre. They are vulnerable and burdened, like Oliver; or have learned to be trickier than the trickiest, like the Artful Dodger. They are steely, sad, often hungry with large eyes. They’re tragically young and terrifically youthful. They are tantalisingly free.

The Ape Star: Q&A with Frida Nilsson

Frida Nilsson children's writer

The story of Jonna and Gorilla is about growing up with a parent who is not the norm. How one so often wishes that one’s parent could be more like all the others—and how one realizes, as the years pass, the advantages of being the child of someone who is an individual and walks their own path.

What makes these the best children’s books? (Panel discussion)

Unity Books Panel information

Join us at Unity Books next Wednesday 10 August at 12.30 pm to hear two librarians, two publishers and a bookseller talk about shortlisted books for the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults.

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