Also an Octopus (PB)

Author(s): Maggie Tokuda-Hall

General Picture Books

Every story starts with nothing, so ...why not an octopus who wants to fly in a spaceship? A delightfully meta picture book that will set imaginations soaring. From Benji Davies, the illustrator of The Storm Whale and Grandad's Island, comes a metafictive story about to build a story! First, a story needs a character. So why not a ukulele-playing octopus? And since this is a story, the octopus has to want something - maybe it dreams of travelling to faraway galaxies in a purple spaceship. But every character needs an obstacle to overcome, and when the octopus sets out to build its own spaceship out of glue, umbrellas, glitter and waffles ...well, he doesn't have much luck. Could there be another character that could help? Debut author Maggie Tokuda-Hall sets up a funny, smart and warm-hearted story all about storytelling, then hands the baton to imaginative readers, who will be more than prepared to take it away.



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Davies makes his Walker debut illustrating this inventive spin on "how to build a story", guaranteed to inspire readers to tell tales of their own. Bookseller "An octopus playing a ukulele is just the start of this witty and unlikely story that will inspire imagination. While having a character is a good start for a story what happens next is what really matters. Ideas aplenty are woven in as characters from an adorable bunny to rocket scientists join the octopus and help him to grow his own story in this thought provoking book about stories and how they come about." LoveReading Julia Eccleshare January 2017 Book of the Month "This is a smart and uplifting look at how stories work and the power of imagination - paired with bright colours and a very cuddly octopus in a cosy red hat. One for the creative kids out there (which is to say, all of them)." Irish Times With dynamic, poly chromatic illustrations and finely judged text, this paean to the "little bit of nothing" with which a book begins should be a surefire hit for aspiring writers of any age. The Guardian "An innovative picture book about how to build a story [...] Funny and smart, this book will fire up youngsters' imaginations." Aldershot News and Mail

Maggie Tokuda-Hall has an MFA in writing from the University of San Francisco and a tendency to spill things. As a longtime children's bookseller she has read her fair share of stories, and she is always hungry for more. Her favourite animal is an octopus, or else an elephant. She lives in San Francisco, USA. Find her online at and on Twitter as @emteehall. Benji Davies is an animation director and award-winning illustrator, whose picture books include the Bizzy Bear series, The Storm Whale and Grandad's Island, which was shortlisted for the Association of Illustrator's prestigious World Illustration Awards. He lives in London with his wife, Nina. Find him online at, and on Twitter and Instagram as @Benji_Davies.

General Fields

  • : 9781406373387
  • : Walker Books Australia Pty, Limited
  • : Walker Books Australia
  • : 0.17
  • : December 2016
  • : 280mm X 210mm X 5mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Maggie Tokuda-Hall
  • : Paperback
  • : Benji Davies
  • : English
  • : E
  • : Children's - Kindergarten, Age 5-6
  • : 32