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THE GOLDEN KEY Pre-order special!


I am offering a FREE custom-designed signed bookplate for anyone who pre-orders my new book THE GOLDEN KEY from the Eerdmans website before December 1st, 2016. It will be shipped in early December.

golden-key-bookmark ORDER THE GOLDEN KEY

Send me a self-addressed stamped regular-sized envelope and an personalization requests and I’ll send you a free signed bookplate. It looks beautiful against the golden yellow endpapers.

Send your request to:

Ruth Sanderson

PO Box 285

Easthampton, MA 01027

NOTES and Sneak Preview:


I started and ended the book wordlessly, with the faires, the guardians of the Key. In the first picture, below, the fairy is sitting with the Key on the tree stump, watching Mossy and his Great-aunt. She is assessing whether he will be the one they want to next find the key.

The Fairy Watches_webStories_web   The fairy chooses Mossy_WebIn the above illustration, the fairy has decided to choose Mossy, and she flies off to hide the key at the base of the rainbow in Fairyland.BW107_Golden Key RainbowGK p16_17BW108_Mossy finds Golden Key

Dancing Chairs copyTangle, the girl who joins Mossy on his quest, has a different experience with the fairies, and a more difficult path than Mossy.

GK_Ch.4_2Tangle In The Forest_WebGK_Ch2_4BW106_DescentTangle at the pool

The Rainbow Stairs_web The Fairy Hides The Key_webThe book ends wordlessly, with the fairy hiding the Golden Key,looking out to the reader as if to say, “Will you be next?”

There are 47 illustrations in the book, in scratchboard, my new favorite medium.

Keep dreaming!


World of Fairies Coloring Book


I am offering my new World of Fairies coloring book as a limited edition of 1000 signed and numbered copies on heavy vellum card stock. SOLD OUT!

The book (unsigned) will also be available later this year with Print-on Demand from Amazon Create Space, and I will post a link when available. They will ship anywhere! Sign up for my newsletter for updates on new releases.

THE WORLD OF FAIRIES is now available as a high resolution printable PDF!

 Order a printable PDF of the coloring pages


World of Fairies_Cover_More White

Here are a few examples of the coloring pages:

World of Fairies_4

World of Fairies_5

World of Fairies_7

Happy Coloring!





I will be there! Displaying my original illustrations, reading to kids, selling my books and prints.

DESCRIPTION FROM MUSEUM WEBSITE: Imaginative Realism combines classical painting techniques with narrative subjects, focusing on the unreal, the unseen, and the impossible. In partnership with IX Arts organizers, the Delaware Art Museum will host the first IX Preview Weekend, celebrating Imaginative Realism and to kick off IX9–the annual groundbreaking art show, symposium, and celebration dedicated solely to the genre. Imaginative Realism is the cutting edge of contemporary painting and illustration and often includes themes related to science fiction and fantasy movies, games, and books. A pop-up exhibition and the weekend of events will feature over 16 contemporary artists internationally recognized for their contributions to Star Wars, The Lord of the Rings, Avatar, Marvel, DC Comics, Blizzard Entertainment, and Wizards of the Coast, among others.

The weekend will also include after-hours events, performances, exclusive workshops with artists, talks, film screenings, artist signings, live demos, and games.


New scratchboard series


I am working on a new scratchboard series (which I am calling INDIA INKED at the present.) Like words, art tells a story, and the fact that people display their stories on their bodies for all the world to see has always intrigued me. They are walking works of art. Many of the pieces will have surreal/evocative elements inspired by the imagery in the tattoos.

BW104_Stealing Time

World of Fairies adult coloring book


I am hooked on the adult coloring book idea. I recently finished 15 black and white fairy pen and ink illustrations for inclusion in an upcoming fairy coloring book from Fairy Magazine. I’ll post a link when it’s available.

Corgi Fairy_SandersonMeanwhile, I have been enjoying doing pen and ink drawings of fairies, and have decided to create many more images. I might run a Kickstarter to raise money to print a limited edition of 1000, titled THE WORLD OF FAIRIES Adult Coloring Book. I plan to do some coloring videos too, after I figure out coloring with markers! Trying out a brand called Chameleon, which are quite blendable. I also really love Verithin colored pencils by Prismacolor.

Stay tuned!


NEWS! The book is available! I decided to go ahead and self-pub rather than do a Kickstarter. I’ll see how it goes, and might do one for my next coloring book, FANTASTIC CATS….



Cinderellas Coach 17x22January 23- July 24  A MAGICAL JOURNEY THROUGH FAIRYTALES

An exhibition at the Wenham Museum of over 50 original paintings from many of my fairytales, as well as my latest book A CASTLE FULL OF CATS, and THE OWL AND THE PUSSYCAT, a Golden Book I illustrated in the 1980’s. The opening is January 23rd, but I will be in Virginia teaching and sadly won’t be there for that. However I’ll be there on March 20th from 1-3pm for a special event:

Enchanted Adventure Party and Book Signing
132 Main Street
Wenham, MA  01984

October 3 2016- April 3rd, 2017

I am helping to organize an exhibition at the D’Amour Museum of Art in Springfield, MA called CATS IN HATS, with over 35 New England Illustrators creating artwork on the theme to coincide with the opening of the new Dr. Seuss Museum opening.


The CATS Have Arrived in the Castle!


A Castle Full of Cats BOOK GIVEAWAY!

To celebrate the release of my new picture book! Simply leave a short comment about  why you love your cat at the bottom of this post or email to enter.

All comments must be posted/emailed by February 21st,

The winner will receive a signed copy of the book, inscribed with a sketch of your favorite cat (you’ll need to send me a photo)

The winner will be posted here on February 22nd


The lucky winner is Hilary Welliver for her lovely description of Julian:

“Julian waits in the window to welcome me home each day. His fur is soft and thick, and his markings form a heart on his chest. Julian purrs like a buzz saw. He has the most expressive voice. His paws smell like popcorn.”

Congrats, Hilary!

 You can get get your immediate cat and kitten fix HERE

Or order from your local independent bookseller.

They are also in Barnes and Noble

A Castle Full of Cats coverHere are some nice reviews from Kirkus and Booklist:

“Wouldn’t anyone be happy with a castle full of cats? “Once there was a queen / who kept a castle full of cats. / She loved the pretty ones and the plain ones, / the sweet ones and the brats.” She pampers them with abandon; everyone has fish for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The cats are confident in her love, but they want to win the king’s, too. “They tried their best to please him / in oh-so-clever ways, / and left him charming little gifts / to brighten up his days.” (These gifts include a mouse in his shoe). They warm his chair in the morning and try to satisfy his love of music and art (with serenades at the piano and claw paintings on the walls). When he becomes upset, the queen just tells him they are only being cats. When he’s had enough, he storms off and returns with his idea of the perfect pet: a drooling bull mastiff! Could this be the end of kitty cat fun and games? Not quite…the cats love the present he’s brought them. Sanderson’s 18th-century king and queen and their adoring brood of pussycats come to life in each detailed, double-page spread watercolor. The palatial rooms and rococo decor will entrance readers, and the purring masses of cats offer plenty of humor for repeat readings Charming, expressive and surprising.”  -Kirkus

“From the cover crawling with cats to the endpapers showing 37 felines, this is a cat-lover’s dream. Told in rhyming text, a bewigged and beribboned queen loves, loves, loves cats. Her affection is obvious—feline portraits and objects d’art adorn every room. However, the king’s disgruntled face shows his lack of enthusiasm for his wife’s cat-infested household. To win him over, the mousers bring him gifts of fish skeletons and dead mice. Stomping off in a huff, the king retaliates by returning with a Great Dane. Does this spell an end to the fun? No indeed, the menagerie finds the canine to be the purr-fect pal! Sanderson’s artwork depicts beautiful castle interiors filled with light and gilt and glamor. The queen and king are attired sumptuously, and each cat has its own personality with antics to match. Their various colors and breeds make for a fun romp as children can follow each one as they creep and pounce, play and snuggle, and perform mischievous tricks.”
— Lolly Gepson   -Booklist






Treasure Cover_smallHORSE RESCUE: TREASURE is the first in a series of horse stories inspired by real horses and horse rescue facilities. TREASURE was written by my daughter, Whitney, who is the author of two books in the Random House HORSE DIARIES series–GOLDEN SUN and DARCY, which I illustrated.

A few summers ago Whitney volunteered at Little Brook Farm in Old Chatham NY,  the oldest horse rescue facility in the US.  She was greatly impressed by their work, especially the theraputic riding, and the field-trip programs for urban schools. Whitney decided to write a book inspired by the horses there. Like the HORSE DIARIES, this story is told from the horse’s point of view.

I was pleased to create the cover illustration for the project, based on a photo of the horse that inspired the story. Whitney generously plans to donate half her proceeds to Little Brook Farm. I encouraged her to publish using Create Space, the Amazon self-publishing arm, so she can control the price and also print books inexpensively for the farm to sell.

If you’d like a poignant read for yourself or a young horse lover, and would like to help support horses in need, here is the link to ORDER THE BOOK.

NOTE:  If you purchase TREASURE on Amazon along with either of  her other books, DARCY and GOLDEN SUN, which I illustrated, people who buy those on Amazon in the future will see TREASURE listed and more people will find out about it. Since this is self-published, that and social media/word of mouth will be the best ways for people to find out the book exists.

If you are interested in a digital copy — Here is a link to a Kindle version.

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