When the Publishing department at Scholastic received a copy of a CD of the haunting, lyrical song The Red Poppy from Canadian musician/teacher Rob Kennedy, they just knew they had to do something with it and approached David Hill to see if he’d be interested in writing a war story for a picture book – his first.
David was very interested in the subject matter and came up with a sensitively written, poignant story that shows the similarities between soldiers on both sides. Scholastic then approached Fifi Colston to do the artwork. “All along, we knew we wanted this to be an absolutely beautiful production – a really special book,” says Scholastic’s Senior Editor, Penny Scown. Fifi produced some stunning and evocative illustrations, which meld seamlessly with the text to portray a grim story with a positive outcome. She then worked with designer Penny Newman and Scholastic to get just the right cover and feel for the book, which is available in hardback with gorgeous endpapers and which includes the CD of the song The Red Poppy – the inspiration for the whole project.