Waiting For Hugo
Waiting for Hugo by Amanda Niland is a book that explores notions of diversity and difference through a story suitable for 3 to 7 year olds. The central character is a young boy who has an obsessive interest which dominates his life and that of his family. This is a trait often present in children who have an Autism Spectrum Disorder. The story is narrated by Hugo’s older sibling, who grapples with acceptance of her brother’s eccentricity. Hugo’s obsession and consequent skill with numbers brings rewards for him and his sister, so that the story ends positively, celebrating Hugo’s unique abilities.
About the Author and Illustrator
Amanda Niland, as well as being a children’s author, is an early childhood teacher, lecturer and researcher with wide experience in working with young children with disabilities. She currently works part-time as an early childhood and music educator at an early intervention centre. Her work includes running family music and playgroups, and conducting research into inclusive practices in early childhood education. She believes very strongly in the power of children’s literature to build understanding of difference and disability.
Claire Richards shares a studio with four other painters near the beach at Brighton in South Australia. Her favourite technique is layering watercolour over crayon, pencil and ink. Her recipe for making picture book illustrations involves acting out the poses, drawing on the computer and mountains of storyboards. She used preparing for illustrating the Eleventh Sheep as an excuse to hang out with lambs and for Waiting for Hugo she found herself counting lots of things. Since finishing her art studies in 2004 Claire has illustrated half a dozen books and created a range of quirky greeting cards.