The Orchard Book Of Hans Christian Andersen's Fairy Tales by Martin Waddell and Emma Chichester Clark

We’ve seen some amazing author/illustrator combinations in the world of children’s books, but now two of our absolute favourites come together and make magic. Martin Waddell, probably best known for the classic Owl Babies, and Emma Chichester Clark, prolific author and illustrator, take on the challenge of Hans Christian Andersen’s Fairy Tales.

Waddell has rewritten nine of the classic stories in an engaging and witty way. He makes them his own, while retaining their traditional narrative structures. ‘The Princess and the Pea’ becomes ‘A Very Princessy Princess’ and cheekily questions, quite rightly, how the princess got into the bed with 20 mattresses. ‘The Ugly Duckling’ has transformed into ‘An Eggs-Traordinary Egg’ and starts with the opening lines, ‘There once was a duck … Now that’s a good way to start a duck story!’

Emma Chichester Clark’s always-beautiful illustrations take on such an air of engaging whimsy, with figures dancing in the margins and gardens growing up the sides of the page. She also draws the most beautiful, sulky giant dog for ‘The Three-Dog Tale’, a rewriting of ‘The Tinderbox’. The combination of author and illustrator is one that delights and wraps you in a warm hug of loveliness. Hans Christian Andersen never looked so good!