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Jeffy James

Jeffy_James_signing_1.jpgJeffy James was born in London in 1970 and grew up in Auckland. His early heroes were Dr. Seuss, Tintin and Batman. At age 11, Jeffy made his first book about a mouse who flew to the moon, which, miraculously, won first prize in a school competition. Later he studied illustration at design school, and then worked for two years in the world of advertising. Seeking adventure, he then left New Zealand and lived in London for seven years.
While working as a freelance illustrator, he made numerous sketching expeditions to great cities around Europe, and once travelled for six months throughout India. Jeffy draws mostly with pen, ink, watercolour and colour pencil, as well as using programs like Photoshop and Illustrator. He now lives on the wild west coast of Auckland with his German-born wife. He has illustrated over 20 books for children, and contributes regularly to publications such as the School Journal and BBC children’s magazines. His other favourite occupations are surfing, grooving to live music, and watching the sun go down.

Selected bibliography:
  • Amanda: The Amazing Merino text by John Parker (Waiatarua Publishing 1990).
  • Flash Ashley text by John Parker (HarperCollins 1994).
  • TT's Terrible Tuesday text by John Parker (Ashton Scholastic 1995).
  • Cobweb House text by Cynthia Todd Maguire (Scholastic 1996).
  • The Fizzy Orange Soft Drink text by Janet Slater Bottin (Scholastic 2001).
  • Skull Island text by G. Brassi (Scholastic 2001).
  • Penguin Expedition text by Jed Mercurio (Walker 2003).
  • The Big Block of Chocolate text by Janet Slater Bottin (Scholastic 2003).


Storylines Trust Te Whare Waituhi Tamariki and Friends of Storylines Te Pou o Te Whare Waituhi Tamariki together form New Zealand’s only national organisation working year-round to promote New Zealand children’s and young adult literature through activities that include a major national Story Tour to schools, early childhood centres and communities, and awards for writers, illustrators and those who work in the area of New Zealand children’s literature



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