Jill Murphy is one of the UK’s most treasured author-illustrators and was the creator of many bestselling books for children, including the Bear Family picture books Peace at Last, Whatever Next! and Just One of Those Days which together have sold over four million copies worldwide.
Born and raised in London, Jill spent her childhood writing and illustrating stories. She left school at sixteen and attended Chelsea, Croydon and Camberwell Schools of Art, writing her first novel, The Worst Witch, when she was just eighteen. It became an instant bestseller, launching an extraordinary publishing career that spanned almost five decades and over thirty children’s books. These include the Worst Witch novels and the award-winning Large Family series, which have each sold over five million copies, and the acclaimed Bear Family series, which includes both her first and last picture books, Peace at Last and Just One of Those Days, published by Macmillan Children’s Books.
Jill’s books have won many major awards including The Smarties Prize and two commendations for the Kate Greenaway Medal and her work has been adapted for film and television, with the Large Family series becoming a successful animated series. The Worst Witch has also been adapted for television, film and theatre, becoming an Olivier Award-winning stage show.
Jill lived and worked from her home studio in North Cornwall, where she drew inspiration from her life, her friends and her family.