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Published June 27th 2020
A classic children's picture book for over 40 years
Pamela Allen. Harper Collins.
Mr Archimedes' Bath is a children's picture book written and illustrated by award-winning New Zealand children's writer and illustrator Pamela Allen. It is 32 pages long and was published by Angus and Robertson, an imprint of Harper Collins, in 1980. Mr Archimedes' Bath is suitable for children from 0 to 2 years of age. Pamela Allen is one of the most well-known and acclaimed children's book writers and illustrators to work in Australia. She has published over 50 picture books since 1980 and sales of her books have exceeded five million copies.
Mr Archimedes' Bath was the first book she published. She wrote and illustrated the book shortly after moving from New Zealand to live in Australia in 1979. All of her children were grown and she needed a job. She tried to find work as an illustrator but was encouraged to try her hand at writing and illustrating her own book. She came up with the idea to write a story about the displacement of water which would ask the question "Where does all the water come from?" The end result was Mr Archimedes' Bath. The story follows Mr Archimedes who is trying to enjoy a bath with some Australian animals. But every time they all get in the bath the water keeps rising and spilling onto the floor. Who is responsible for the mess? It's a mystery! Mr Archimedes decides he will try and figure out what is going on.
Mr Archimedes' Bath went on to receive critical acclaim and has been a childhood favourite for over 40 years now. Pamela Allen was awarded the Ethel Turner Prize in 1980 for Mr Archimedes' Bath and received a commendation at the 1981 Children's Book Council Book of the Year Awards for her work on the book. Mr Archimedes' Bath was one of my favourite books as a kid. It was fun re-reading it as an adult to my daughter. It truly is a timeless childhood classic.