Born in Australia, Gwenda Turner (1947–2001) came to New Zealand in 1967 and completed a Diploma of Graphic Design at Wellington Polytechnic. Since the publication of her first book, Daydream Journey in 1982 Gwenda captivated small children and their grown-ups with her wonderfully detailed, colourful drawings of so many aspects of the familiar and undeniably New Zealand world of the very young.
Gwenda was a prolific author/illustrator with more than 30 books (adult and children's) published. Her popular picture books are notable for their colourful celebration of play and family. She wrote of bears, ponies, sheep; she had children making mud, baking cakes, ballet dancing, going out with Dad. She finished her last book just a week before she died.
- Daydream Journey (Collins 1982).
- Catnip Mice and Tussie Mussies (Collins 1983).
- Creepy Cottage (Collins 1983).
- The Tree Witches (Kestrel Books 1983).
- Falter Tom and the Water Boy text by Maurice Duggan (Penguin 1984).
- New Zealand A B C (Whitcoulls 1985).
- Gwenda Turner's Playbook (Viking Kestrel 1985).
- Snow Play (Collins 1986).
- New Zealand 1 2 3 (Whitcoulls 1986).
- Colours (Puffin 1989).
- Once upon a Time (Puffin 1990).
- Shapes (Puffin 1991).
- Opposites (Puffin 1992).
- Gwenda Turner's Australian A B C (Puffin 1992).
- Over on the Farm (Puffin 1993).
- Counting Cats and Dogs (Puffin 1994).
- Bears in the Park (Puffin 1995).
- Gwenda Turner's New Zealand Farm Animals (Puffin 1995).
- At the Beach (Puffin 1996).
- Teaching bears to Count (Puffin 1996).
- Messy Jessie text by Lynda Burnett (Puffin 1996).
- Ballet Class (Puffin 1997).
- Gwenda Turner's Australian 1 2 3 (Puffin 1997).
- Pat-a-Cake (Puffin 1997).
- Pony Club (Puffin 1998).
- A Day out with Dad (Puffin 1998) [republished as Ferry Ride in 2002].
- The Builder's Cat (Puffin 1999).
- Let's Make Mud! (Puffin 1999).
- Counting Sheep (Puffin 2000).
- Penny and Pocket (Puffin 2001).
- My First Numbers (Penguin 2003).
- My First Words (Penguin 2003).
- Russell Clark Award 1984.