Antiguan-Barbudan Artist and Children’s Book Featured

Zavian Archibald’s art for Barbara Arrindell’s book Turtle Beach is the cover image for Collins UK Caribbean Schools 2022 catalogue.

It’s a good opportunity to remind you about this Caribbean line of children’s books in the Collins Big Cat series hit the market between 2020 and 2021 – during a pandemic, so no big launch events, but hopefully you’ve had a chance to check them out. Especially given that this is the season for giving and books make great books. They are (with reader or critical reviews sampled where I find them):

The Lost Sketchbook by Imam Baksh (illustrated by Stacey Byer).
Finny the Fairy Fish by Diana McCaulay (illustrated by Stacey Byer)
Turtle Beach by Barbara Arrindell (illustrated by Zavian Archibald)

This is an excellent read for children and adults. It is is informative and keeps the attention of the reader. Even adults can learn much about the early life of the turtle.The illustrations are colorful and inviting and touches on the issue of conservation and preservation of animals.


This is a lovely book and beautifully illustrated.

(sample Amazon reader reviews)

The Wonder of World Leaf by Summer Edward (illustrated by Sayada Ramdial)

The book’s  illustrations capture the joy and vibrancy of life in Trinidad and Tobago as well as the diversity of the people as Trinidad’s two major ethnic groups are  East Indian and African.  Other elements of Trinidad folklore are also touched on throughout the novel and will provide lots of fodder for conversation and further reading…well written, accessible and perhaps most importantly, culturally authentic.

(Nerdy Book Club review)

A lovely heartwarming story featuring authentic Trinidadian characters and dialogue. The book highlights the wholesome family values and powerful folk wisdom that have shaped Caribbean communities, but that aren’t portrayed enough in books and the media. The illustrations are so cute and serve as a mirror for young Caribbean girls and boys to see themselves depicted as loved, loveable and empowered to make a difference in their families and communities. Readers unfamiliar with Trinidad (and Caribbean culture more broadly) will learn a lot about the island’s customs and rich traditions. Highly recommended!


The detail on every page tells you the author takes pride in her work and her country, the explanations or translations for anyone unfamiliar with the words are easy to understand. This would be a great book for schools anywhere wanting to provide and encourage children to learn about a true Caribbean experience. 

(sample Amazon reader reviews)

Sea Turtles by Carol Mitchell
The Jungle Outside by Joanne C. Hillhouse (illustrated by Danielle Boodoo Fortune)

The relationship of Dante and his Tanti is warming…The illustrations by Trinidadian Danielle Boodoo-Fortune are glorious. My daughter had a wow moment when she saw the picture of Tanti. The illustrations really bring the story to life. Would recommend to parents who are wanting to support children to discover nature.

(Goodreads reader review)

It was a cute and heartwarming read. Can’t wait to pass it on to my young nephew and niece.

(Amazon reader review)

Colourful illustrations, descriptive writing and relatable Caribbean experiences 

(Instagram reader review)

How to be a Calypsonian by Desryn T. A. Collins (illustrated by Richy Sanchez Ayala)

Would recommend to any readers who love singing and dancing. My daughter composed her own calypso song after reading. We had lots of fun reading this book.

(Goodreads reader review)

The authors of the books are from various Caribbean islands including Guyana, Jamaica, Antigua and Barbuda, and Trinidad and Tobago; and the illustrators are all Caribbean as well.

As with all content on, except otherwise noted, this is written by Joanne C. Hillhouse (author of The Boy from Willow Bend, Dancing Nude in the Moonlight, Musical Youth, With Grace, Lost! A Caribbean Sea Adventure, The Jungle Outside, and Oh Gad!). All Rights Reserved. If you enjoyed it, check out my page on Amazon, WordPress, and/or Facebook, and help spread the word about Wadadli Pen and my books. You can also subscribe to the site to keep up with future updates. Thanks.

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