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Author and illustrator Sha’an d’Anthes reveals how a simple doodle inspired her beautiful new picture book Bandits.


What is your book Bandits about?

Bandits is an adventure story about friendship and figuring out the world for yourself. Fern lives in a colourless city, void of nature but full of order, which one day falls victim to two bandits who break in and make a big mess! She has to find out who they are.


Where were you when the idea for Bandits hit?

Drawing! I had just doodled a small masked girl riding a giant raccoon and thought - what is the story here!


Do you have a specific routine when writing/illustrating your books?

I always start with a single image. Something that is so fascinating that I think what is the story here?


What is the best thing about being a Children’s author? What is the hardest?

The best thing is being able to create entire worlds! I'm an illustrator first so getting all the words out and in the right order is the toughest part!


What did you enjoy reading as a kid?

My favourite authors were Roald Dahl and Dr Suess, I think I loved the cheekiness and sense of wonder in their books.


When did you know you wanted to be a writer/illustrator?

I’ve always loved drawing but I told my mum that I wanted to “write and draw my own books” at the age of three-and-half!

  • Bandits - Sha'an d'Anthes

    Fern lives in a colourless, lifeless city and has only ever seen trees as pictures in her books. Fern is told that the bandits who come in the middle of the night to steal from the city dwellers are bad guys, but when she follows them back to their home she discovers a land of colour, life, friendship and a future she believes in.

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