Isabel Pin


Isabel Pin was born in Versailles on 9th January 1975, daughter of a German mother and a French father. Familiar with German and French culture from an early age, after having spent some years in Spain with her parents, she grew up in France. At the age of 17, she moved to Strasbourg to study illustration at the École Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs (ESAD). She continued her studies at the Hochschule für Gestaltung (University of Design) in Hamburg.

In Hamburg Isabel wrote and illustrated her first children’s book, Der Kern (translated into English as The Seed), which has been published in eight languages. More than 40 books with text or illustrations by Isabel have resulted from her cooperation with German and foreign publishers. Amongst the most well known are Ein Regentag im Zoo and Die Geschichte vom kleinen Loch.

Isabel’s books have been published in 20 countries and have been translated into more than a dozen languages. Isabel lives and works in Berlin and is the mother of two children.


Isabel Pin received her first major prize in 1998 when she won the Prix d´Illustration de l’Institut International Charles Perrault. In 2002 she was awarded the Prix Enfantaisie for Der Kern which was chosen by a jury of over 1,500 children between the ages of seven and ten as their favourite book. Der Kern is on the recommended reading list of the Catholic Children’s and Young People’s Book Prize in Germany. In 2008, Isabel was awarded the Prix P´tits Mômes in Geneva for Ein Regentag im Zoo, as well as winning together with Heinz Janisch, the Österreichischen Staatspreis für Kinder- und Jugendliteratur for Eine Wolke in meinem Bett.

Also in 2008, Isabel received the second prize (shared with Maja Bohn) of the Troisdorfer Bilderbuchpreis for Bananen sind krumm, aber nicht dumm. The Luchs, awarded jointly by the German national weekly newspaper Die Zeit and Radio Bremen, was awarded to Isabel in April 2006 for Ein Regentag im Zoo as well as in November 2004 for Kleiner König, wer bist du? (together with Antonie Schneider).

Isabel was amongst those nominated in 2011 and 2012 for the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Awards (ALMA), the world’s most highly-endowed prize for children’s and young people’s literature.