Bill Peet: An Autobiography Book Poster Image

Bill Peet: An Autobiography



Former Disney illustrator shares his life story.

What parents need to know

Not applicable
Not applicable
Not applicable
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this irresistible autobiography, written as a simple children's story, boasts lots of funny drawings, including favorite Disney characters.

User reviews

Parents say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

Kids say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

What's the story?

Discover the story behind the real-life genius who illustrated Peter Pan and Sleeping Beauty for the silver screen. Bill Peet, a former Disney illustrator and the author/illustrator of scores of children's books, weaves a fascinating tale out of his own life story. Hundreds of lively characters, including Disney's own Dumbo and the 101 Dalmatians, dance across the pages of this delightful book.

Is it any good?


With tenderness and affection, Bill Peet spins his life story into a children's tale in this illustration-packed volume. The first half covers Peet's boyhood adventures in the Midwest with enjoyable tales about drawing and fishing. The only element missing from the first part is a deeper sense of how Peet felt during the book's most poignant moments: being teased for not having his father around, and his father's sudden reappearance in his life, an event Peet says "marked the end of a happy childhood."

The second half of the narrative mainly details the pressures Peet felt as a Disney employee, as well as his struggle to develop a solo career. Still, it shines a revealing light on the inner workings at Disney, and readers are treated to the tale of how the classic song "When You Wish Upon a Star," from the Disney movie Pinocchio, came to be. With a breezy storytelling style and delightful illustrations, Peet moves readers through the events of his life; although the book runs nearly 200 pages, the drawings take up more than half.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the story behind the familiar Disney images. Does this book change the way you see Disney movies and products?

Book details

Author:Bill Peet
Illustrator:Bill Peet
Book type:Non-Fiction
Publisher:Houghton Mifflin Children's Books
Publication date:January 1, 1989
Number of pages:189
Publisher's recommended age(s):9 - 12

This review of Bill Peet: An Autobiography was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.


Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

Top advice and articles

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.


Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Family Media Agreement