Taylor, Sean 1965-
Taylor, Sean 1965-
Home—England; São Paulo, Brazil. Agent—Ceila Catchpole, celiacatchpoleyahoo.co.uk. E-mail—[email protected]
Author and storyteller. Pluto Press, London, England, former member of staff; former freelance journalist; formerly worked in writing development for East London, England.
Independent/Scholastic Story of the Year award, 1994.
(Reteller) Silly Stories from Here, There, and Everywhere, illustrated by Eric Smith, Brett Hudson, and Nick Schon, Heineman (London, England), 2000.
Headfirst into the Porridge, illustrated by Carla Daly, Rigby (London, England), 2001.
The Woodcutter and the Bear, illustrated by Bill Bolton, Rigby Educational (London, England), 2001.
Brer Rabbit's Trickbag, illustrated by Dave McTaggart, Oxford University Press (Oxford, England), 2002, new edition, 2007.
The Huge and Horrible Beast, illustrated by Tim Archbold, Oxford University Press (Oxford, England), 2003.
Carnival King, illustrated by Emma Shaw Smith, Oxford University Press (Oxford, England), 2003.
Aligator Swamp, illustrated by Neil Chapman, Pearson Longman (London, England), 2003.
Small Bad Wolf, illustrated by Jan Lewis, Kingfisher (London, England), 2003, Kingfisher (Boston, MA), 2004.
The Genie of the Bottle Bank, illustrated by Ella Okstad, Ginn (London, England), 2004.
Boing!, illustrated by Bruce Ingman, Candlewick Press (Cambridge, MA), 2004.
Mojo and Weeza and the Funny Thing, illustrated by Julian Mosedale, Collins Educational (London, England), 2004.
The Stone Cutter, illustrated by Serena Curmi, Collins (London, England), 2005.
Too Much Talk!, illustrated by Ofra Amit, Rigby Educational (London, England), 2005.
Booooo!, illustrated by Joanne Partis, Rigby (London, England), 2005.
Purple Class and the Flying Spider, illustrated by Helen Bate, Frances Lincoln (London, England), 2006.
Purple Class and the Skelington, and Other Stories, illustrated by Helen Bate, Frances Lincoln (London, England), 2006.
When a Monster Is Born, illustrated by Nick Sharratt, Orchard (London, England), 2006, Roaring Brook Press (New Milford, CT), 2007.
Mojo and Weeza and the New Hat, illustrated by Julian Mosedale, Collins Educational (London, England), 2007.
The Great Snake: Stories from the Amazon, illustrated by Fernando Vilela, Frances Lincoln (London, England), 2008.
The Bopping Big Band, illustrated by Christyan Fox, Scholastic UK (London, England), 2008.
The Ring Went Zing!, illustrated by Jill Barton, Dial Books for Young Readers (New York, NY), 2009.
Contributor of short fiction to Skin Deep, edited by Tony Bradman, Puffin (London, England), 2004, and Like Father like Son, edited by Bradman, Puffin, 2006.
(Editor) Cheese and Chips Are Related to the Moon (poetry), Eastside Books (London, England), 1992.
Take It from Me (poetry), Basement Writers (London, England), 1992.
Sean Taylor started writing poetry in the 1990s, but his sense of whimsy, paired with his interest and talent for storytelling, motivated him to shift to writing for children. Specializing in stories that appeal to pre-and beginning readers, Taylor teams up with a number of illustrators to produce brightly colored books designed to appeal to younger children. Among his books are Small Bad Wolf, with humorous art by Jan Lewis; Boing!, illustrated by Bruce Ingman; and When a Monster Is Born, featuring cartoon art by popular illustrator Nick Sharratt.
In Boing! Taylor and Ingman tells a story about a man who loves to jump. Calling himself the Great Elastic Marvel, the man is a five-time trampoline champion. During one of his many trampoline practices, he miscalculates while executing a quadruple flip. After bouncing out of his apartment window, the springy trampolinist bounds, hops, and springs from one scary situation to another. Author and illustrator "get the hero from one slapstick scrape to the next, with plenty of fun—and the greatest of ease," concluded a Publishers Weekly contributor in a review of Boing! Praising Taylor's "lively" story in her School Library Journal review, Shawn Bro-
mmer noted that the author's use of "repeated phrases add consistency and rhythm" to animate young listeners. Michael Cart wrote in Booklist that Ingman's "sketchy" paintings complement Taylor's "simple but zany tale."
Taylor's sense of whimsy is enhanced by Sharratt's colorful art in When a Monster Is Born, which Booklist contributor Gillian Engberg described as "just the thing for a sugared-up, restless story-hour crowd." A parody of many picture books about the birth of a new infant, Taylor's tale quickly introduces the new arrival: a rolypoly creature with mismatched blue and orange eyes, fuchsia horns, and funny teeth. As the tale continues, readers are given a sequence of two alternatives as the monster grows up, one monstrous and one silly but benign. By choosing the most human of the options, the monster eventually goes to school, grows up, and has a baby monster of his own. The story's "hilarious possibilities … make [When a Monster Is Born] … a great choice for storytime," according to Booklist contributor Susan Dove Lempke, while a Kirkus Reviews writer predicted that Taylor's "circular tale" has enough appeal to make the book "a storytime staple."
Biographical and Critical Sources
Booklist, August, 2004, Michael Cart, review of Boing!, p. 1946; June 1, 2007, Gillian Engberg, review of When a Monster Is Born, p. 86.
Horn Book, July-August, 2007, Susan Dove Lempke, review of When a Monster Is Born, p. 386.
Kirkus Reviews, June 15, 2004, review of Boing!, p. 582; May 1, 2007, review of When a Monster Is Born.
Publishers Weekly, July 12, 2004, review of Boing!, p. 63.
School Library Journal, August, 2004, Anne Knickerbocker, review of Brown Bear Gets in Shape, p. 86; August, 2004, Shawn Brommer, review of Boing!, p. 96; June, 2007, Suzanne Myers Harold, review of When a Monster Is Born, p. 126.
Sean Taylor Home Page,http://www.seantaylorstories.com (August 15, 2008).