What the Ladybird Heard at the Seaside

Julia Donaldson’s indomitable ladybird pays a visit to the seaside in this charming picturebook. And who do you think she sees there, planning yet another criminal endeavour? None other than her old adversaries Hefty Hugh and Lanky Len! This time the dreadful duo have designs on the mermaid’s beautiful hair. Once again (and luckily for the mermaid) the tiny spotty adventurer sees all, hears all and rallies the sea creatures to come up with an idea to play a trick of their own and outwit the terrible thieves.

The rhyming story is nicely paced, contains some pleasing onomatopoeia and is a gentle adventure with just the right amount of threat – children will be amused by the clever illusion that the sea creatures create. Lydia Monks’ illustrations are gloriously vibrant and very entertaining. The pages are full of light and space and we see the world from several different viewpoints, both the elevated perspective of the ladybird that gives a panoramic glimpse of the world from on high and close ups that show us all the characters in greater detail. The luminously bright colour palette, absence of harsh black outlines and elements of collage all come together to create a vivid and animated series of pictures. The expressions, both of the animals and humans are done with a particular light and clever touch and add greatly to the sense of fun – searching for the ladybird on every page will be a favourite game for readers old and young.

About the Illustrator
Lydia Monks Headshot
Lydia illustrates several bestselling series including the What the Ladybird Heard adventures and Princess Mirror-Belle, written by Julia Donaldson. Her distinctive use of colour and collage has won her critical acclaim and several awards, including the Royal Mail Scottish Children’s Book Award, the Stockport Children’s Book Award and multiple nominations for the Kate Greenaway Medal. Lydia lives
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Book Cover - What the Ladybird Heard at the Seaside
Publication Date
March 2020