2010 sees Puffin Books, the children’s imprint of Penguin, celebrate its 70th anniversary. As a child, I read an enormous number of Puffins and am still a big fan of their classic book jackets (and exuberant puffins, of course).
To mark this occasion I’m posting a beautiful Puffin Club film made in the 1960s about Joan Aiken, one of my favourite authors when I was young. The film follows Joan as she works, travels and talks about her inspirations – she has an amazing voice!
Excerpts and illustrations from The Wolves of Willoughby Chase, Blacks Hearts in Battersea, Night Birds in Nantucket and Whispering Mountain also feature.
The full Wolves of Willoughby Chase series runs to 12 books in all and these atmospheric historical adventures are probably what she is best remembered for. I, however, will always reserve a special place on my bookshelf for the anarchic Arabel and Mortimer.