Upcoming release: ‘Ellie Pillai is brown’, illustrated by Illo artist Trisha Srivastava


‘Ellie Pillai is Brown’ is a heartwarming, humorous new book, soon to be published. This coming of age novel follows the life of young Ellie Pillai whilst she navigates love, self-image and most importantly, identity.

‘Ellie Pillai has no idea how to apply eyeliner properly. And she’s got eyebrows that meet in the middle unless rigorously plucked. Most days, Ellie Pillai is somewhere between invisible, and not very cool – and usually, she’s ok with that. But suddenly, Ellie feels different, and she doesn’t know why. Or maybe she does…Maybe it’s the new boy at school who makes her brain explode into rainbows every time she sees him (and also happens to be going out with her best friend), or maybe it’s her new drama teacher, the one who seems to have noticed she exists. Suddenly, her misfit style, her skin colour, her songwriting, and all that getting lost in the music in her head seem to be ok too. Because maybe standing out isn’t a bad thing after all. Before she knows it, Ellie is blazing a new trail, and she doesn’t get to be invisible anymore, because now, everyone’s looking…’

The cover is illustrated by Trisha Srivastava, a self-taught illustrator born and bought up in India. She is a visual explorer who’s passion lies in storytelling through vibrant colours which is evident through the beautiful cover made for this book.

The cover is a stylised portrait of Ellie with a 60’s vibe and psychedelic colour scheme. The bright colours lend themselves greatly to the young, fun story of adolescent Ellie. With the combination of colours and style of makeup, you can’t help but smile looking at this book.

This can be purchased from Waterstones in May of 2022

Here is a short animation of the cover art.