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Adrienne Kennaway facts for kids

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Adrienne Kennaway (born 1945, New Zealand) is an illustrator and writer of children's picture books. She won the 1987 Kate Greenaway Medal from the Library Association, recognising the year's best children's book illustration by a British subject.


Adrienne Prudence Moore grew up "all over the world". She was raised partly in Kenya, a background that informed her early work, such as Game Park Holiday (1967) and The Elephant's Heart and other stories (1968), which she illustrated as Adrienne Moore. Those two 38-page picture books were written by William Lewis Radford and published by East Africa Publishing House of Nairobi in the East African Readers Library series; the Library of Congress Subject Heading is "English language—Textbooks for foreign speakers—African". The US Library of Congress catalogues twelve books she illustrated as "Adrienne Moore" from 1966 to 1972. Kennaway became notably successful with animal folk-tales retold by Mwenye Hadithi, portraying African wildlife with vivid watercolour pictures. The first was Greedy Zebra (1984); according to one library summary: "Relates how the animals of the world, once all a dull color, acquired their furs and spots and stripes and horns, and how Zebra's greedy appetite caused him to get his particular coloring." The Greenaway Medal recognised one of those picture books, Crafty Chameleon, published by Hodder & Stoughton in 1987. The story shows how Chameleon uses craft to "gets the better of" Leopard and Crocodile.

Kennaway's later work has covered animal tales and natural history from across the world, as both illustrator and writer. She now resides in County Kerry, Ireland.

Selected works

Five of the picture books written by Mwenye Hadithi are Kennaway's five works most widely held (catalogued) in WorldCat participating libraries.

  • Game Park Holiday (Nairobi: East African Publishing House, 1967), by William Lewis Radford
  • The Elephant's Heart and other stories (EAPH, 1968), by Radford
By Mwenye Hadithi, illustrated by Adrienne Kennaway

Except the most recent, these picture books were published by Little, Brown (US, first edition) and Hodder & Stoughton (UK).

  • Greedy zebra (1984)
  • Hot hippo (1986)
  • Crafty chameleon (1987)
  • Tricky tortoise (1988)
  • Lazy Lion (1990)
  • Baby baboon (1993)
  • Hungry hyena (1994)
  • Laughing giraffe (London: Hodder & Stoughton, 2008)

Two more picture books with different writers were also published by Little, Brown in the US, with different publishers in the UK

  • Awful aardvark (1989)
  • Curious clownfish (1990), by Eric Maddern

As writer and illustrator

  • Bushbaby (Little, Brown, 1991)
  • Little elephant's walk (HarperCollins, 1992)
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