After leaving school at 16, Emily Gravett went on the road, living in a 30-foot bus with her partner, Mik. They became part of a community of “travellers” for nearly 10 years, living an unpredictable subsistence life. Then they had a daughter, Oleander, who loved being read to but made it hard for her parents to continue living the traveller life. The young family moved to a cottage in rural Wales, where Gravett started to draw. She only began producing children’s picture books eight years ago, when she enrolled on an art course at Brighton University.
Gravett won the Kate Greenaway medal in 2005 with her very first picture book, Wolves. She did it again in 2008, with Little Mouse’s Big Book of Fears, an energetic and unconventional book that promises to help young children confront and overcome their fears. Her books have been called witty, daring and “beautifully imagined,” with artwork that feels like it could jump right off the page.
Today, Emily lives in Brighton, England, with Mik, Oleander, and two pet rats, Buttons and Mr. Moo.