Australian Gillian Rubinstein and American Karen Hesse are not best-known for their books for very young children. They generally write novels for older children and both have won awards for these. However both have published picture books. Karen Hesse's books are not easy to find in Australia. Perhaps because many deal with history and America, but The Cats in Krasinski Square and Come On, Rain! are both beautifully executed picture books. The second is illustrated exquisitely by Jon J Muth.
Gillian Rubinstein has several picture books, two of which I have used with great success with prep classes. Dog In, Cat Out which is illustrated by Ann James is great with preschoolers who are eager to read. You can read the pictures and get the minimal text correct. It only has four words and the pictures tell you what they will be. It is also good for children learning to tell the time using analog clocks. Mr Plunkett's Pool which is illustrated by Terry Denton is very different from Dog In, Cat Out. It looks at sharing and the whole concept of community. There is plenty here for heated class discussions. Gillian Rubinstein has also published many beginner novels, three about Troy and Tania; The Giant's Tooth; The Fairy's Wings; and The Pirate's Ship and a series of four books about two 'kitkids' Jake and Pete.