Laurie, could you give a brief synopsis of “The Twins and Kitty Pumpkin– Born Free and Equal”?

Author Laurie Noelle: “The Twins and Kitty Pumpkin– Born Free and Equal” is the first in a series of 10 children’s books featuring Kitty Pumpkin, non-identical twins Jaime and Jen, and their escapades as they seek to find out about human rights. As the series progresses, the adventures get more and more thrilling– basic human rights are explained in poetry, depicting fun story examples children will enjoy and remember! My magnificent illustrator brings these stories to life with colorful images kids will love. 


What inspired you to write “The Twins and Kitty Pumpkin”?                                                                            

Author Laurie Noelle: I was inspired by two things. Witnessing human rights abuse going on in the world, near and far, and wanting so desperately to do something about it, I decided to tackle the “Universal Declaration of Human Rights.” Upon reading it carefully, I realized everyone has more rights than I thought they did, and that these rights were not in practice everywhere as they should be. Secondly, being a poet, I thought of the books I read to my daughters when they were very young, and realized I still remember some of the poetic phrases from those books. Putting two and two together, my major inspiration was, “What if I wrote all the human rights into poetic stories for children? Perhaps the next generation will grow up remembering and applying all their rights!”  

Sharon, how did you and Laurie first connect?

Illustrator Sharon Beth: We first connected in Vancouver, B.C. more than 40 years ago. We met in a nightclub where we both worked; she supporting a young family and me attending Simon Fraser University at the time. I am so happy that Laurie enlisted me to illustrate these books and feel very privileged to be a part of this project.  

What’s it like to collaborate together on a children’s book?

Illustrator Sharon Beth: Illustrating a children’s book is the most fun I have ever had as an artist! The poem is so wonderful, so I had to rise to the challenge of making the concepts come alive visually for children to grasp. It has been so gratifying for me. I have illustrated more 80 pages so far that cover most of book six. There will be 10 books when the series is complete. All 30 human rights are being addressed. 

Since “The Twins and Kitty Pumpkin” is a series, what can we expect from subsequent books?

Author Laurie Noelle: Here are a few examples of future adventures to befall the twins and Kitty Pumpkin: the besting of classroom bullying, escaping attempted abduction into slavery, overcoming fraud in an underwater hotel, a rocket ship ride in outer space, adventures in Africa, travel in a time machine, and much more! The wonderful thing is all these stories end positively and applicable human rights for the circumstances are learned well. We are embarking upon the creation of the seventh book in the series, and the second book should be available to the public this autumn. 

Noelle’s works (including books, photography, poetry, and prose) can be found at Beth’s digital art and photo manipulations are located at