In  titles marked * I am the sole author and illustrator. In the rest I am either the main author or I made a contribution, sometimes major, sometimes less so. In the early days I was published under the pen name ‘Kipchak Johnson’. I was not involved as an illustrator on many/most of the covers, which were produced by publishers’ design departments. The Spaceship Earth series was illustrated by my friend and colleague Andrew Mee, who also wrote many of the books in that series and some books in other series with which I was involved.

Travelbrief Publications  2010

*The Real Ancient Mariner
Pirates and poesy on the South Sea

Account of the discovery of the identity of the real-life privateer who formed the model for Coleridge’s ‘Ancient Mariner’. In 1709 Simon Hatley sailed on the Duke with Alexander Selkirk, the model for Robinson Crusoe, and with William Dampier, mentioned in Gulliver’s Travels as ‘my cousin Dampier’ and the model for Captain Pocock in that book – and, in part, the model for Gulliver himself. This book illuminates events behind this strange literary coincidence.

YouCaxton Publications 2021

*Music, Diamonds and Conspiracy
Fowkes and friends in India

Based on the correspondence of several generations of the Fowke, Holland and Walsh families during the eighteenth century. Closely related to each other, they were representative of the wider British merchant class in this period, growing in wealth and sophistication but, in general, without much landed property. Their fate was closely intertwined with the East India Company and with Robert Clive when he came on the scene, and this book sets them in that wider context. Much of their correspondence ended up in the British Library as the ‘Fowke Papers’ and the ‘Ormathwaite Collection’, two of the largest collections of personal letters surviving from the eighteenth century.

Who? What? When? series of  reference books  for Hodder Children’s books:
*Who? What? When? World War I, 978-0340851869 – 2000
*Who? What? When? Victorians, 978-0340851845 – 2003
*Who? What? When? Tudors, 978-0340851852 – 2003
*Who? What? When? World War II, 978-0340851876 – 2002
A series of black-and-white history books for late primary children.

Who’s Who  series for Hodder Children’s books:
Two biographical dictionaries for children.
*Who’s Who in British History, 978-0750281560 – 2000
*Who’s Who in Science and Technology, 978-0750281669 – 2000

 What They Don’t Tell You About series for Hodder Children’s Books (now Wayland):
Long series of black-and-white non-fiction books for late primary children.
*The Blitz, 978-0340851838 – 2002
*The Gunpowder Plot, 978-0340851821 –  2002
*Cold War, 978-0340788073 – 2001
*Charles I and the Civil War, 978-0340788066 – 2001
*The Olympics, 978-0340736111 – 2000
*World War I, 978-0750280464 – 2001
*World War II, 978-0750280471 – 1997
*The World Wars 978-034085193-7
*Science, 978-0340693506 – 1997
*Living Things, 978-0340693490 – 1997
*Planet Earth, 978-0340713297 – 1998
*Romans in Britain, 978-0750280518 – 1998
*Vikings, 978-0750280488 – 1996
*Elizabeth I, Her Friends and Relations, 978-0340656136 – 1995
Ancient Egyptians,  978-0750280495 – 1996
*Ancient Greeks, 978-0750280501 – 1998
*Anglo-Saxons, 978-0750281997 – 1998
Henry VIII, His Friends and Relations, 978-0340636213 – 1995
Pirates of the Past, 978-0340636237 – 1995
Queen Victoria, Her Friends and Relations, 978-0340636220 – 1995
Villains Through the Ages, 978-0340636244 – 1995

Science Quest series for Heinemann:
Classroom books
Changing State, 0-431-07603-0 – 1994
Magnets and Circuits, 0-431-07600-6 – 1994
*Forces, 0-431-07602-2 – 1994
Salt, Sand and Silver, 0-431-07601-4 – 1995
Energy, 0-431-07605-7 – 1994
The Changing Earth, 0-431-07606-5 – 1995
Light and Sound, 0-431-07607-3 – 1995
Plants and Animals, 0-431-07608-1 – 1995

Secret Histories Series for Watts Books:
32-page colour hardbacks.
*Inventions – 1996
*Ships and Sailors – 1996
Explorers – 1996
*Outlaws – 1996

Why Do We Use That? Series for Watts Books:
32-page colour hardbacks.
*Do That? – 1996
Wear That? – 1996
Celebrate That? – 1996
*Use That? – 1996

Horrible Histories for Watts Books:
This series came out at almost the same time as the more famous Horrible Histories by Terry Deary. The Watts series was in the standard 32-page colour format then popular for children’s information books; he had the inspiration to look back to 1066 an All That and to design a series of 124-page, black-and-white paperbacks, which could be sold at a far lower price.
*Dead! – 1993
*Sick! – 1993
*Disaster! – 1993
Guilty! – 1993

Spaceship Earth series for Cassell:
This series started with the very first books on the environment for children and was very successful.
*Worm’s Eye View – 1990 winner of the Copus Children’s Book Proze.
Down the Plughole – 1990
Get Switched On – 1992
Buy Now, Pay Later! – 1990
All at Sea! – 1992
Give Me Air – 1992
Grow Your Own – 1992
Down the Hatch! – 1990
Mighty Microbes – 1990

Fantastic Journey series for Hodder and Stoughton Ltd.:
32-page colour hardbacks
*Into Space – 1993
*The Centre of the Earth – 1993

Animal Hospital series for Cassell:
Learn-to-read stories
*The Lizard Without a Tail – 1991
*The Limping Cat – 1991
*The Toad in the Hole – 1991
*The Baby Gorilla – 1991
*The Bird Which Couldn’t Fly – 1991
*The Bad Parrot – 1991

Book Bus series for Collins Educational:
Learn-to-read stories
*Oil and Water1990
*Young and Old – 1990
*Plants and Animals – 1990
*Night and Day – 1990
*Legs and Wheels – 1990

 Individual title for Hodder Childrens Books:
*The Millennium, the Unofficial Guide – 1999

Oxford University Press

*World Cup – 2002

Hometown Publications

*A Children’s History of the Potteries

Microcosm – distributed by Pitman’s Publishing
A computer puzzle book that required general knowledge combined with computing ability to find the solution. One of the world’s most difficult puzzles, published in 1984 in the wake of Masquerade, it remained unsolved for nearly forty years until finally cracked by a very gifted individual from the south of England in 2022.

Slonker’s Lucky Day
My first book