There are not many who go by just a single name and you will instantly know who they are talking about, but Atinuke is one of those people. The award-winning children’s author and traditional storyteller began her career – by accident – in 1990 as an oral storyteller and wrote her first book in 2005.
Known for the Anna Hibiscus series, illustrated by Lauren Tobia, the Baby series, illustrated by Anna Brooksbank, and the Too Small Tola series illustrated Onyinye Iwu, Atinuke has published over 20 books for children, including her most recent non-fiction book Brilliant Black British History.
Atinuke is a source of much inspiration to a debut children’s author like myself, and I had the honour of interviewing her for Black Ballad.
This interview is edited for length and clarity.