From Wikipedia: Ludwig Bemelmans (April 27, 1898 - October 1, 1962) was an Austrian author, an internationally known gourmet, and a writer and illustrator of children's books. He is most noted today for his Madeline books, six of which were published from 1939-1961. A seventh was discovered after his death and published posthumously in 1999. ~~~ Bemelmans was born to the Belgian painter Lambert Bemelmans and German Frances Fischer in Meran, Austria-Hungary (now Merano, Italy). His father owned a hotel. He grew up in Gmunden on the Traunsee in Upper Austria. His first language was French and his second German. ~~~ In 1904, his father left the family for Ludwig's governess. His mother Frances took Ludwig and his brother to her native city of Regensburg, Germany. Bemelmans had difficulty in school as he hated the German style of discipline. He was apprenticed to his uncle Hans Bemelmans at a hotel in Austria, but he reportedly shot and seriously wounded a waiter. Given the choice between being institutionalized and emigrating to the United States, he chose the latter. ~~~ He spent the next several years working at hotels and restaurants in the US. In 1917, he joined the U.S. Army but was not ordered to Europe because of his German origin. He did become an officer, and was promoted to second lieutenant. He writes of his experiences in the Army in the book, My War with the United States. In 1918, he became naturalized as an American citizen. ~~~ In the 1920s, Bemelemans tried to become an artist and painter while working at hotels, but had substantial difficulties. His cartoon series The Thrilling Adventures of the Count Bric a Brac was dropped from the New York World after six months. He associated with Ervine Metzl, a commercial artist and illustrator who is variously described as Bemelmans' friend, "agent", and "ghost artist".
Used availability for Ludwig Bemelmans's The Donkey Inside
January 1990 : USA Paperback