Dad dot info form. Ask questions, get answers


Multi-award winning author/illustrator Chris Riddell announced as the new Children’s Laureate



The Doodler alias Children's Laureate, Chris Riddell

Following hot on the heels of his predecessor Malorie Blackman, new Children’s Laureate Chris Riddell took up his two-year role promising to spread ‘the joy of sketch books’. 

Described as ‘a creative powerhouse’ by the chair of the selection group, Riddell, political cartoonist for The Observer, called previous Children’s Laureates (including Malorie Blackman, Quentin Blake and Jacqueline Wilson) ‘superheroes’ and dubbed himself ‘The Doodler, a masked champion of drawing for fun’. 

At his recent inauguration, Riddell spoke about a five-point plan for the next two years including daily drawings to be posted online, more emphasis on reading for pleasure, and a new initiative to support school libraries throughout the UK.

Riddell said ” Over the years I have visited many school libraries of all shapes and sizes. I want to celebrate them in all their forms.’

 Riddell promoting father and son reading time for libraries


Three of Chris Riddell’s best loved works for younger readers


Back to black: Riddell's Goth Girl


Riddell’s Costa children’s award-winning Victorian gothic parody for kids is as inventive as it is funny. Ada Goth, only child of Lord Goth, rattles around Ghastly-Gorm Hall all on her ownsome until she befriends William and Emily Cabbage and a ghostly little mouse called Ishmael. Packed with irresistible puns, it’s a total treat that Riddell writes and illustrates with his trademark wit. Macmillan, age: 9+




Written by Neil Gaiman, the story of a boy called Nobody who is brought up by ghosts, ghouls and spectres in a graveyard won the prestigious Carnegie medal back in 2010. It is enthused with a wonderful sense of the macabre without resorting to gore and schlock. Riddell’s fabulously detailed illustrations help conjure mood and bring some very dead characters to life with real style. Bloomsbury, age: 10+

 Whole new worlds: Gulliver's Travels


Martin Jenkins’ retelling of Swift’s Gulliver was perfectly matched by Riddell’s outlandish drawings. Gulliver’s voyages to other worlds is shown to be just as timely and relevant to modern day readers as it was back in the eighteenth century when Swift first wrote it. Just to prove how contemporary it feels, Riddell even snuck in a cheeky Tony Blair caricature. Well, you would, wouldn’t you? Walker, age: 8+

Related entries

Review: Rapunzel and The Strongest Mum

Review: Rapunzel and The Strongest Mum

Father of two, Simon Harris, reviews two new Macmillan books for kids, Rapunzel and The Strongest Mum... Rapunzel by Bethan Woollvin My wife is always telling our girls that ‘mummy is strong’ whilst flexing her muscles – and I’m sure she’s not the only mama to do...

Why You Should Never Buy A Dog From A Puppy Farm

Why You Should Never Buy A Dog From A Puppy Farm

In her new children's book, Viola Vincent Reporting... Underdog, investigative-journalist-turned-author, Anna Kenna, looks at the growing global problem of puppy mills. Here, she tells why pet-owners-to-be should avoid buying a dog that's been bred on one of...

Latest entries

How To Have A Holiday At Home

How To Have A Holiday At Home

If you’re anything like me and flip flopped about for ages, unsure what to do about booking a summer holiday this year amid constantly- changing Covid news, then you’ll be finding yourself at home for the summer. But while we may not be able to dip our toes in the...

The Best Way to Create a Household Budget

The Best Way to Create a Household Budget

Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pound ought and six, result misery. --Charles Dickens Money. It's not a fun subject, but a necessary one. Sorting your finances gives...

Ask Debbie – advice and support for Dads

Ask Debbie – advice and support for Dads

It's OK to not be OK Are you struggling? Could you use some advice from a qualified counsellor? Every week Debbie Pattison answers your questions. Please send them to You don't know it until you become a parent but children test you every day. Lack of...

Pin It on Pinterest