Tadgell, Nicole 1969-

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Tadgell, Nicole 1969-


Born 1969, in Highland Park, MI; married. Education: Wheaton College, degree.


Home and office—14 Sampson St., Spencer, MA 01562. E-mail—[email protected].




Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators.



Jean Alicia Elster, Just Call Me Joe Joe, Judson Press (Valley Forge, PA), 2001.

Jean Alicia Elster, I Have a Dream, Too!, Judson Press (Valley Forge, PA), 2002.

Jean Alicia Elster, I'll Fly My Own Plane, Judson Press (Valley Forge, PA), 2002.

Leslie Bulion, Fatuma's New Cloth, Moon Mountain (North Kingston, RI), 2002.

Jean Alicia Elster, I'll Do the Right Thing, Judson Press (Valley Forge, PA), 2003.

Nikki Grimes, A Day with Daddy, Scholastic (New York, NY), 2004.

Angela Shelf Medearis, Lights Out!, Scholastic (New York, NY), 2004.

Jennifer Riesmeyer Elvgren, Josias, Hold the Book, Boyds Mills Press (Honesdale, PA), 2005.


Michigan-born artist and illustrator Nicole Tadgell admits to a long-time love affair with children's books. While growing up she also loved to draw, and now, in her work as an illustrator, she frequently works watercolor into her pencil renderings. Since the publication of her first illustration project, Jean Alicia Elster's 2001 picture book Just Call Me Joe Joe, Tadgell has created art for several other writers, including Leslie Bulion, Nikki Grimes, Jennifer Riesmeyer Elvgren, and Angela Shelf Medearis.

Praising the use of "luminescent watercolors" in Tadgell's art for Bulion's Fatuma's New Cloth, a Pub-

lishers Weekly contributor wrote that the illustrator0 "highlights the glorious colors" of the story's East African setting "and demonstrates the warmth of a closely knit community in which tradition is paramount." In Booklist, Hazel Rochman cited the art in Grimes' beginning reader A Day with Daddy, noting that "Tadgell's exuberant watercolors show the family bonds, the longing, and the love" that are central to Grimes' story.

In her work for Elvgren's Josias, Hold the Book, Tadgell takes readers to Haiti, where Josias lives in an impoverished neighborhood. While the boy longs to attend school, the family garden requires constant attention in order to keep everyone fed. However, when a blight that strikes the garden is diagnosed by Josias with the help of books at the school's library, the boy's father learns to appreciate the importance of education. He decides to send his son to school, and allow Josias to "hold the book." In her review of Josias, Hold the Book for School Library Journal, Catherine Callegari commented that through Tadgell's "muted watercolor" images the feelings of Josias and his family "are clearly depicted, giving [these] characters added dimension and believability." A Kirkus Reviews critic had a similar reaction, writing that the Haitian boy's "well-meaning, earnest behavior comes through" in Tadgell's "expressive facial portrayals as he thinks about solutions to his problem."

Biographical and Critical Sources


Booklist, October 15, 2004, Hazel Rochman, review of A Day with Daddy, p. 409; February 15, 2006, Ilene Cooper, review of Josias, Hold the Book, p. 101.

Kirkus Reviews, March 1, 2006, review of Josias, Hold the Book, p. 229.

Library Media Connection, November-December, 2006, Karen Sebesta, review of Josias, Hold the Book, p. 67.

Publishers Weekly, February 25, 2002, review of Just Call Me Joe Joe, p. 63; May 20, 2002, review of Fatuma's New Cloth, p. 65.

School Library Journal, January, 2002, Kathleen Simonetta, review of Just Call Me Joe Joe, p. 98; December, 2002, Anna DeWind Walls, review of Fatuma's New Cloth, p. 85; January, 2005, Corrina Austin, review of Lights Out!, p. 85; February, 2005, Catherine Callegari, review of The Girls in the Circle, p. 97; March, 2006, Catherine Callegari, review of Josias, Hold the Book, p. 187.

Tribune Books (Chicago, IL), August 4, 2002, review of Fatuma's New Cloth, p. 5.


Nicole Tadgell Home Page, http://www.nicoletadgell.com (March 4, 2007).

Illustrator Source Web site,http://www.author-illustr-source.com/ (March 4, 2007), "Nicole Tadgell."