Meet the author: Giles Andreae - The Great Heffalump Hunt

Book cover for Winnie-the-Pooh: The Great Heffalump Hunt

From the bestselling picture book author, Giles Andreae, comes a new tale featuring the beloved bear, Winnie-the-Pooh. Find out more about the book and the author below.

About the book (for ages 3+)

When Winnie-the-Pooh sets out to catch a Heffalump he finds himself in a sticky situation. Luckily his loyal friend, Piglet, isn't far away…

'But something in his little soul
Prevented him from running,
And Piglet's voice rose clear and strong,
“Hold on, Pooh Bear… I'M COMING!"'

The creator of Giraffes Can't Dance is back with a delightful new tale about Heffalumps, deep pits and large jars of honey, inspired by the classic stories of A A Milne.

Pooh ranks alongside other beloved characters such as Paddington Bear, and Peter Rabbit as an essential part of our literary heritage. Whether you're five or 55, Pooh never fails to warm the heart.

About the author

Giles Andreae

Giles Andreae is the author of many top-selling and award-winning picture books, including Rumble in the Jungle, Commotion in the Ocean, the Captain Flinn and the Pirate Dinosaurs series, as well as international bestseller Giraffes Can't Dance.

Giles is also the creator of Purple Ronnie, Britain's favourite stickman, and of the artist/philosopher, Edward Monkton, two ranges of greeting cards and related merchandise that have made Giles a contemporary pop culture icon in the UK. He lives with his wife, Victoria, a children's clothes designer, and their 4 young children by the river in Oxfordshire.

Meet Giles Andreae

Can you tell us about your book?

It's a retelling in verse of the Heffalump story from Winnie-the-Pooh. The friendship between Piglet and Pooh is surely one of the greatest in English literature, so I've focussed on just these two characters. The big, scary Heffalump brings out exactly what we adore about both Pooh and Piglet, but to say any more than that would give too much away…!

Well, I know I'm biased here, but I don't think it's possible to top Winnie-the-Pooh… the book has such a big, BIG heart

Do you have any writing rituals or habits?

I like to get all my admin out of the way at the beginning of the day, so that there's nothing to distract me when I start to write. I seem to do a lot of 'tidying up' as well, which I'm pretty sure is simply displacement activity (it's easier than writing) but it does mean my studio is spotless!

Could you describe the room that you write in?

I work in a converted stable overlooking the Thames in the Oxfordshire countryside. It's heaven, and I feel very lucky indeed.

What are you reading now?

I'm reading Isle of Noises by Daniel Rachel. It's a collection of interviews with great British songwriters that a friend recently gave me. It's fascinating to learn about the creative process that other writers go through, and to discover how some of my all-time favourite anthems came into being. I'm a bit of a closet songwriter too, which makes it all the more interesting.

What is your favourite children's book?

Well, I know I'm biased here, but I don't think it's possible to top Winnie-the-Pooh and, from a recent survey, the British public agrees. Milne just KNOWS human nature. The way he reflects our foibles through his characters is matchless, and the book has such a big, BIG heart.

What is the last book you bought someone as a gift?

Don't Let Go by Jeanne Willis and Tony Ross, where a simple bicycle ride becomes a metaphor for the entire parent-child relationship. Jeanne is the most lyrical and subtle of all picture book authors and I cannot read this book out loud without bursting into tears.

What advice would you offer aspiring writers/illustrators?

If you want to work in any creative field, you have to find the courage to go out and get your work in front of the right people, which can feel pretty exposing. Try to remember that publishers are always looking for new talent, though. Take on board any criticism they may have to offer too. Your friends will invariably tell you that what you are doing is wonderful, but publishers know what they're talking about.

Winnie-the-Pooh: The Great Heffalump Hunt page spread

Book giveaway

We ask all winners to share their child's thoughts on The Great Heffalump Hunt. Everyone who posts their detailed feedback by 29 May will be entered into a draw to win a £100 Love2shop voucher.

This giveaway is sponsored by Egmont