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Welcome

A good book, a pot of tea and some dark chocolate. Heaven! Thank you for joining my world of magical mysteries and exciting adventures. Bring your own refreshments and I’ll provide the rest.

More about me

Writer's Notebook

Read Here

The Bookshelf

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BBC Berkshire

Looking forward to The Book Club with the fabulous Bill Buckley on BBCBerkshire, 2pm Tuesday 19th March when I will be discussing these three beauties... 

Fantastic Fiction - blog post image

Fantastic Fiction

Apologies the site wasn't updated last month. I've had my head down with editing, and I've been on a wonderful writing course I want to tell you about.  

Welcome Lucy Strange - blog post image

Welcome Lucy Strange

I am a bit overexcited today to be welcoming Lucy Strange, author of The Secret of Nightingale Wood, to the site. I read The Secret of Nightingale Wood (find it on The Bookshelf) in one sitting, lying in bed with flu over Christmas last year. Never have I been so happy to be ill! The story transported me back to childhood and into the most wonderful magical tale.   

WIN! WIN! WIN! - blog post image

WIN! WIN! WIN!

I'm excited to bring you two competitions courtesy of Lexi Rees, author of Eternal Seas reviewed this week on the Bookshelf.  Lexi is offering Amazon vouchers and the exciting opportunity to see your illustrations published in her next book. Both competitions are easy to enter.  

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Great School Libraries

I am very excited to see the Great School Libraries initiative up and running today - congratulations to all those people who have worked so hard behind the scenes. Let's all get behind their campaign, because every child deserves a great school library.  

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Starting School Books

It's coming up to that time of year again and I've been looking at books about starting secondary school. There are lots of picture books for kids joining nursery or reception, but fewer about going up to Year Seven. Here is my initial list but it's a work in progress so please get in touch with any more to add ideas. 

A Word With Jasbinder Bilan - blog post image

A Word With Jasbinder Bilan

To celebrate world book day I have an extra special guest and am thrilled to welcome the lovely Jasbinder Bilan, the 2017 winner of the prestigious Times Chicken House Prize. 

A Word With Lisa Thompson - blog post image

A Word With Lisa Thompson

I am delighted to welcome the bestselling author of The Goldfish BoyThe Light Jar and the newly launched (but not yet reviewed - I will I promise) The Day I Was Erased. Lisa joined me on the site last summer, but since she has a lovely new book out I thought I'd run her interview again while I get on with reading her latest novel!  

A word with ... - blog post image

A word with ...

What a treat to have the wonderful Eloise Williams, author of the fabulously spooky new novel Seaglass and before that Gaslight, one of my favourite books last year. Check out The Bookshelf for reviews of both books and listen carefully to Eloise's wise words below, she is a hugely gifted author and her advice to young writers is second to none, and explains a lot about why her own writing is so beautiful.   

A Word With ... - blog post image

A Word With ...

I am over the moon to welcome Mel Darbon to the site this morning. Mel is the super talented author of August's Book Of The Month, Rosie Loves Jack. You have probably heard about Mel's wonderful debut but if you've somehow missed the hullabaloo surrounding its publication, check out my review on The Bookshelf. It's currently my #1 contender for Book Of The Year  

A Word With ... - blog post image

A Word With ...

A huge welcome to today's guest, Laura Sheldon, a school teacher by day and an author by night. We're grateful that she had time to squeeze in our questions before marking!  

Please scroll down and check out 'How Wolves Change Rivers' - I'm afraid you'll miss it. (Note to self : move Nature Notebook higher up the page!)


Asha and the Spirit Bird - blog post image

Asha and the Spirit Bird

Asha lives on the family farm with her mother in rural India.  

How Wolves Change Rivers - blog post image

How Wolves Change Rivers

Since reading Isabella Tree’s fantastic book Wilding I have become interested in ecosystem engineers: beavers, prairie dogs, kelp, fungi, woodpeckers ... I am discovering new ones all the time. Today’s revelation is wolves - watch this (it’s short, I promise!) 

 

Wundersmith - blog post image

Wundersmith

Go away I'm reading! 

"The moon illuminated the yew tree's ghoulish profiles turning them into grim reapers that watched over us as we rowed."

~The Witches' Punchbowl