An image featuring a black and white photograph of Dick King-Smith alongside a collage of some of his books on a yellow and orange background
Where to start with...

Where to start with Dick King-Smith’s books

Dick King-Smith was 56 years old when his first book was published, yet he went on to write over 130 books in his lifetime. That’s a lot of animal tales! If you’re not sure where to start with the books of Britain’s best-loved animal storyteller, then who better to ask than King-Smith's great-granddaughter Josie Rogers.

Josie Rogers

He’s well-known for creating a character called Babe, or The Sheep-Pig. Dick loved animals throughout his life, from breeding budgerigars as a child to working as a farmer, and this passion is what makes his stories so magical. Did I mention that they’re also heart-warming, hilarious, and full of surprises? And, as you’ll discover, Dick King-Smith didn’t only write about animals. Some of his stories feature their human companions too!

But why should you take my word for it? Well, I’m a bit of an expert – my name’s Josie, I’m one of Dick’s many great-grandchildren, and I’ve read nearly all of his books! In fact, I even got the chance to collaborate with Dick when an unfinished manuscript that he started in the 1980s was discovered recently. I had the honour of finishing that story off, and it became Ambrose Follows His Nose, which you’ll read more about in the list below. Before I began writing, I made sure to reread lots of Dick’s books so that I could finish this one as faithfully as possible. 

When I was little, Grampa Dick loved to read whatever story or poem I had just written, and always encouraged me to get my writing out there. So now I’m returning the favour! Here are some of my favourite Dick King-Smith books, just for you. 

Image: Victoria Ibbetson / Penguin

Hero image: Victoria Ibbetson / Penguin

Sign up to the Puffin newsletter

Stories, ideas and giveaways to help you spark young imaginations