Just William is a collection of children's short stories by Richmal Crompton. William in the title is a young school boy of eleven, eternally scruffy and frowning. He and his friends, Ginger, Henry and Douglas, call themselves the Outlaws, and meet at an old barn. The Outlaws are sworn enemies of the Hubert Lane-ites, with whom they frequently clash. Ginger is almost as tousled, reckless and grimy as William himself. He has been known to take over in William's absence and is his best friend. Henry brings an air of wisdom to the otherwise non-academic Outlaws. Never liking to own up to being at a loss, he can always deliver the knowledge that the Outlaws need. Douglas, perhaps the most pessimistic of the Outlaws (though it has never stopped him joining in with any lawless activity) is the best of them at spelling. He spells knights "gnights" and knocks "gnocks". The Outlaws take pride in this because, unlike them, he knows the contrariness of the English language. Artist Bio Author: Richmal Crompton (1890-1969) was initially trained as a schoolmistress but later became a popular English writer, best known for her William series.