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The Ugly Five

Written by Julia Donaldson

Who's that singing on the savannah? It's the top-five ugly animals in Africa! The wildebeest, warthog, vulture, hyena and marabou stork swagger proudly across the savannah, rejoicing in their ugliness - and delighting their babies, who think they're perfect just the way they are. Inspired by the real-life Ugly Five safari animals, Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler's brand-new picture book is a jubilant celebration of animals who are often rather unloved. The funny, heart-warming rhyme is a joy to read aloud, while bold, comical illustrations bring the savannah spectacularly to life.

The Ugly Five book cover

Axel says:

It was suggested at some point that the ugliness of the creatures should be even more extreme and exaggerated, but I felt they should look more naturalistic (as much as my drawings ever are) and that the animals - who are not really ugly - should keep their dignity.

African wildlife is widely under threat, so I'm happy to partner with Tusk, an organisation that raises awareness of this situation and that promotes its protection.

Practising drawing the animals

Where to buy The Ugly Five in the UK

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