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About the book
  • Published: 3 September 2018
  • ISBN: 9780143771524
  • Imprint: Picture Puffin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 24
  • RRP: $18.99

Little Hector and the Big Blue Whale


Formats & editions


From award-winning picture book creator Ruth Paul comes a new series about a plucky dolphin called Little Hector and his BIG adventures.

A gorgeous new picture book for young children to find out all about the tiny and endangered Hector's dolphin.
Introducing . . . Little Hector!

A small but daring dolphin, Little Hector swims out into the deep blue ocean. He meets many dangers — and an unlikely friend — and proves you are never too small to have BIG adventures.

Children will love meeting Little Hector and his friends, and will also learn how we can help to look after our precious marine environment and its inhabitants.

  • Pub date: 3 September 2018
  • ISBN: 9780143771524
  • Imprint: Picture Puffin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 24
  • RRP: $18.99

About the Author

Ruth Paul

Ruth Paul lives in an off-grid, straw-bale house on a farm just outside Wellington, New Zealand. As well as writing and illustrating children's picture books, Ruth has worked as a costume illustrator for Peter Jackson movies. She has two teenaged sons and is actively involved in her local community, having previously chaired her local Community Board and School Board of Trustees. Over the years, Ruth achieved a Bachelor of Arts majoring in English and History from Victoria University, a Diploma in Visual Communication Design from Wellington Polytech (now Massey University), and most of a law degree.


Ruth started writing and illustrating her own picture books in 2004, and has created over 15 titles. The King's Bubbles won the NZ Post Children's Choice picture book award in 2008, and three of her books have made the Storylines Notable Book list over the years. Stomp was a finalist in the NZ Post Book Awards 2012, and Bad Dog Flash was selected for the US Kid's Indie Next List in 2014. I Am Jellyfish, a literally luminous story with its glow-in-the-dark cover, won Best Picture Book at the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults in 2018. The judges were full of praise, noting that ‘The text and illustration perfectly complement each other in this humour-filled tale of small but mighty…This is a book for all the unsung small heroes and it will be giggled over and read again and again.’

In 2019, Ruth was made an Arts Foundation Laureate, receiving the Mallinson Rendel Illustration Award.

Ruth’s books have sold in New Zealand, Australia, USA, Canada, the UK, China and Korea, with translations in five languages. Her original picture book illustrations have contributed to touring exhibitions for Painted Stories (previously Te Tai Tamariki Trust) and two are held in the prestigious Mazza Collection at the University of Findlay, Ohio. She says every new book is a challenge and presents the opportunity to get better at the craft she wholeheartedly loves.

Also by Ruth Paul

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Praise for Little Hector and the Big Blue Whale

“Ruth Paul always seems to manage cute and endearing in equal measure and Little Hector and the Big Blue Whale is a perfect example of this...There is a lot for little ones to look at in the illustrations, even when Hector is all alone in the ocean the reader can see ships and marine life in the distance. The little, varied fish tell a story of their own – they are swimming past in schools, eating smaller fish and generally getting on with fishy things. Each fish, no matter how tiny seems to have a unique expression. Ruth Paul’s ocean is a busy and interesting place. This is a very sweet read for little ones who can all relate to Hector, being squitty and all. And on the back page, we find some facts about Hector’s dolphins as well, and these are simple and informative. But best of all? The word squitty….”

Simie Simpson, The Sapling

“A delightful picture book that includes seals, sting-rays, orca and the blue whale within our New Zealand sea to educate your little family members – along with a language rich tale.”

Sue's Reviews, Wairarapa Times-Age Weekend

“Little Hector and the Big Blue Whale is a wonderful new book that teaches children about the rare Hector’s dolphin. Children will love reading all about Little Hector’s big adventure into the deep sea and meeting all his marine friends. I can’t wait to read about Little Hector’s next adventure!”

Alana Bird, The Reader

“both a delightful story of an adventurous little dolphin and a book that could launch an inquiring young mind into an exploration of our marine environment and its inhabitants.”

Trish Nash, Corinna School, Book Council of New Zealand

“This is a charming story, with a subtle moral.”

Trevor Agnew, Agnew Reading

“Children will love meeting Little Hector”

Fennec and Friends Book Club

“fun to read out loud”

Lyn Potter, Grownups.co.nz

“This is a story of kindness and caring for others. The artwork is gorgeous...Highly recommended”

Margaret Kedian, Magpies

“For our children to understand our place in the world, they need to see their world reflected back at them. Little Hector takes one small part of Aotearoa’s uniqueness and allows young readers to recognise the importance of our natural environment. A cute wee book with an important message on many levels.”

Rebekah Fraser, NZ Booklovers

“Children will enjoy this gentle story of self-acceptance, which is enhanced by lively illustrations. The non-fiction back matter is a nice addition, detailing facts about the Hector's dolphin and highlighting its plight as an endangered species.”

Emma Wood, Otago Daily Times


Discover More

Article
Fun facts about the Hector's Dolphin from Little Hector and the Big Blue Whale.
Q&A
We love seeing the work spaces of creative folk.
Article
How to support the conservation of Hector’s Dolphin with Little Hector and the Big Idea.

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