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"They look like me." Stimulating and inclusive representation.

Fed up with searching in vain for diverse books for our kids we started making our own. We are co-founders Sheju Adiyatiparambil-John and Judy Skidmore. When we started Parakeet Books our goal was to save the world while making kids books and we knew straight away we wanted all our books to be diverse and inclusive.

Painful facts: 1% of main characters in kids books published in 2017 were a person of colour, that rose to 4% in 2018. And characters with a disability or with an LGBTQ+ theme get even less representation. Publishing can and should do better.

Often when people of colour are featured in a book the focus is on their "difference" or their struggle. And although addressing themes of difference or struggle are important so are books about normal stuff, funny stuff, adventures. A little brown boy eating pancakes, a girl getting used to her new baby brother (they have two mums), or two brown kids meeting the Dinosaurs of Crystal Palace.

So here we are. We publish fantastic stories where the main characters represent all genders, ethnicities, and abilities. Sign up to our newsletter to hear about new books and follow us on instagram, facebook or twitter.

Sheju John


Sheju writes and edits stories and handles the business side of things. He loves working with illustrators to get the pictures exactly right - his daring choices have given Parakeet Books two of the best illustrators out there: Vanessa Arduini and Anastasiya Epishina.

Judy Skidmore

Co-founder and creative director

Judy writes, edits and designs the books, website and promotional material. She found her hidden performer when she had to get right outside her comfort zone and start reading to large groups of children. Turns out she’s quite good at it!

Devjani Bodepudi


Devjani is a writer and teacher of Indian origin who lives with her dog, her husband and two children, in a small town called Rugby in the UK. Devjani has already published poetry and a novel (Mirrors, published by Holland House). Her story with Parakeet Books is her children’s book debut and we are extremely excited to share it with you all.

Anushka Bansal


Anushka (she/they) is a queer non-binary illustrator & collage artist based in New Delhi. They enjoy scrapbooking and collecting interesting leaves & flowers. A lot of their work revolves around depicting people & especially kids in communion with nature and the wilderness. When she's not furiously scribbling on her ipad, you can find them tending to their plants or looking at the trees.

Abbi-Jean Reid


Abbi is a Marketing executive at Little, Brown and is thrilled to be working with Parakeet Books. She loves reading and she has made the most gorgeous caper about two sisters, Ready for an Adventure.

Bhumika Jangid


Amazingly Bhumika, from Jaipur, is actually a science graduate. Later she studied graphic design and discovered her passion for children's book illustration, character design and cartoons. While working as a graphic designer, Bhumika started learning how to make digital illustrations through YouTube tutorials. Now she’s a fully fledged freelance illustrator and overjoyed that she’s finally in love with her work. Bhumika created the enchanting characters in Parakeet Books’s most recent story, Ready for Adventure.

Vanessa Arduini


Born in Como, Vanessa graduated from the Faculty of Architecture at the Milan Polytechnic. She works as an architect, interior designer, graphic designer and illustrator. In her work she tries to merge her many passions, brought together by creativity and the use of colour. For Parakeet Books she illustrated the adorable Buddy's Pancakes and sumptuous Scout's Bedtime.

Anastasiya Epishina


Children’s illustrator, painter and graphic artist. Previously Anastasiya worked as an early childhood art teacher. She truly loves and is inspired by drawing with and for children. Her work for Eve’s New Brother is achingly beautiful and the love between the family members shines through every page.

Alan Skidmore

Writer and illustrator

Creator of our first and most beloved books, the Alice and Judy Adventures. These were lovingly devised by Alan over 30 years ago. The stories have not aged and the environmental themes are as relevant today as they ever were.

Geogy Roche


Geogy keeps things ticking over with Parakeetbooks.com - his 5-year-old daughter loves Buddy's Pancakes!

S. Meena Kumari


S. Meena Kumari is passionate about literacy and the Tamil language. Tamil is one of the longest-surviving classical languages in the world spoken by 70 million people worldwide. Meena lives in Chennai where our co-founder, Sheju, grew up.

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