The Great Stink book launch with Colleen Paeff and Nancy Carpenter via Zoom

You never knew you wanted to learn more about poo!

The Great Stink book cover

Once Upon A Time presents Colleen Paeff and her debut picture book The Great Stink. This non-fiction picture book will grab you by the nose!

Order a signed copy of The Great Stink

Register for the Zoom Book Launch

About The Great Stink: Discover the true story about the determined engineer who fixed London's pollution problem in this funny, accessible nonfiction picture book featuring engaging art from the illustrator of Queen Victoria's Bathing Machine.

It's the summer of 1858, and London's River Thames STINKS. What is creating this revolting smell? The answer is gross: the river is full of poop. 

But the smell isn't the worst problem. Every few years, cholera breaks out, and thousands of people die. Could there be a connection between the foul water and the deadly disease? 

One engineer dreams of making London a cleaner, healthier place. His name is Joseph Bazalgette. His grand plan to create a new sewer system to clean the river is an engineering marvel. And his sewers will save lives. Nothing stinky about that. 

With tips for how to prevent pollution today, this fascinating look at science, history, and what one person can do to create change will impress and astound readers who want to help make their planet a cleaner, happier place to live.

Colleen Paeff author photo provided by author

About the author: Fueled by English breakfast tea, a burning curiosity, and a love of research, Colleen Paeff writes picture books from a book-lined office in an old pink house with a view of the Hollywood sign. A former preschool teacher and bookseller, she is the author of The Great Stink: How Joseph Bazalgette Solved London’s Poop Pollution Problem (illustrated by Nancy Carpenter). Find her online at and on Twitter and Instagram @ColleenPaeff.

Nancy Carpenter author photo provided by author

About the illustratorNancy Carpenter is the acclaimed illustrator of Thomas Jefferson and the Mammoth HuntQueen Victoria's Bathing MachineFannie in the Kitchen, and Loud Emily, among other books. Her works have garnered many honors, including two Christopher Awards and the Jane Addams Children's Book Award. She lives in Brooklyn, New York. Visit her at

Tuesday, August 31st at 6:00 PM Pacific Time 

Register in advance for the event: 

Tuesday, August 31, 2021 - 6:00pm
Event address: 
SKU: 9781534449299a
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