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Stephanie Blake

I find inspiration in my own life.

Stephanie Blake is an author and children’s book illustrator. Her character Simon the Rabbit, who first appeared in 2002, is now known worldwide.

Published on 12/06/2019

2 min

An American, born in 1968 in Minnesota, Stephanie Blake now lives in Paris, where she writes and illustrates children’s books for éditions L’École des loisirs. Self-taught, she says her inspirations include Alan Alexander Milne (Winnie the Pooh), Dr Seuss (The Grinch), Asstrid Lindgren (who notably created the character of Pippi Longstockings) and Tomi Ungerer, author of, among others, of The Three Robbers (“Les Trois Brigands”).

Her first work, An Elephant for a Shower (“Un éléphant pour se doucher”), came out in 1994. 36 other picture books followed, mainly aimed at children aged 2 to 8, including Violette (1998), Mic the Porcupine (“Mic le porc-épic”) (2001), Poo Sausage (“Caca boudin”) (2002), My Cat, my Little Cat (“Mon chat, mon petit chat”) (2004), Giving is Giving (“Donner c'est donner”) (2007), Scarlett’s Birthday (“L'Anniversaire de Scarlett”) (2009), Aaaah not the Dentist! (“Aaaah pas le dentiste") (2010), I Don’t Want to go to the Pool ("Je veux pas aller à la piscine”) (2014), and of course her latest work, Rotten Potato (“Patate pourrie”) (2017).

Simon the rabbit Stephanie Blake’s signature character. He first appeared in 2002 Caca Boudin and quickly became a cult favourite among French children. Simon the rabbit answers questions about children's everyday lives while making them laugh, while also making the educational problems faced by new parents less intimidating.

In order to give her works a certain rhythm, the author plays with typography and works on rhymes and punchlines, in order to captivate the young readers with every page.

Thanks to the success of her books, Simon the rabbit's character became an animated cartoon in 2016.

Since his first publication in France in 2002, Simon the rabbit's adventures travelled the world. 17 of his picture books have been translated into more than 20 languages: English (for the well-known American publisher Random House), Spanish, Swedish, Norwegian, Italian, as well as Korean, Japanese and Chinese.

Stephanie Blake regularly travels to meet this foreign audience: she was in Germany in October 2017 at the Frankfurt International Book Fair.

More than three million copies of her books have already been sold worldwide, an impressive career that proves the universality of Simon the rabbit, a playful and funny character who seems to touch children regardless of their nationality.

Simon le lapin -  the cartoon
Simon le lapin - the cartoon
  • 1968

    1968

    Stephanie Blake is born in Northfield in Minnesota (USA).

  • 1994

    1994

    Her first book, An Elephant for a Shower, appears as part of the Loulou & Cie collection by École des loisirs.

  • 2002

    2002

    For the first time, Stephanie Blake puts Simon the rabbit into pictures for the Caca Boudin picture book.

  • 2005

    2005

    Simon le lapin apparaît pour la seconde fois dans l'album Au loup !.

  • 2016

    2016

    Simon the rabbit becomes a 52-episode animated cartoon for the France 5 television channel.

  • 2017

    2017

    Patate pourrie is published. This is the latest book about Simon the rabbit's adventures.

The Institut français and the author.

Stéphanie Blake visited Japan and the United Kingdom in 2017 with the support of the Institut français.

 

She took part in the South Ken Kids Festival in London.

L'institut français, LAB