The Cranky Caterpillar (Hardcover)

The Cranky Caterpillar Cover Image

The Cranky Caterpillar (Hardcover)


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A charming story about a cranky caterpillar and Ezra, the little girl who finally manages to cheer him up

One day Ezra hears a gloomy blue tune coming from the piano. To her surprise, it's a caterpillar making the sound: a cranky caterpillar. Ezra tries to cheer him up with some fresh air, cakes, and new hats, but nothing seems to work… What can Ezra do to help the cranky caterpillar change his tune?

Richard Graham is a new illustrator with a highly distinctive and original style. The origins of The Cranky Caterpillar lie in his own artistic sculptural creations: a caterpillar created from the hammers inside an old piano, a band of musical characters, all sculpted from instruments and materials found in his studio. Graham has also been inspired by Wassily Kandinsky's color synesthesia, whereby we are shown the magical colors of music, in this splendidly illustrated book. Children will identify with the struggle the caterpillar goes through, in trying to articulate his emotions, and will delight in the inventive band of friends that succeed in cheering him up.


Richard Graham studied art history and has a Masters in creative and critical writing. He works from his art studio in London, where he creates characters from everyday objects—including oversized caterpillars from old pianos. The Cranky Caterpillar is his first picture book.
Product Details ISBN: 9780500651087
ISBN-10: 0500651086
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Publication Date: September 5th, 2017
Pages: 32
Language: English
absolutely astonishing . . . an astounding piece of work
— Raymond Briggs, creator of "The Snowman"

Richard Graham successfully toggles together sculpture, animation, fine art, and storytelling, forging a fresh take on the art of picture book creation… With captivating characters, smart text and free-flowing illustrations The Cranky Caterpillar will resonate beautifully with readers.

— New York Journal of Books

This is a cute little book about the importance of socializing, the power of friendship, and why it’s so crucial to be willing to change your mind.
— Picture Book Depot