Posted by Tom on Dec 09, 2013
One of the absolute best and most satisfying experiences for a publisher is to hear from our readers – and last week we really hit the jackpot. A Year Two class at our local primary school had all been reading the Hubble Bubble, Granny Trouble books by Tracey Corderoy and Joe Berger – both the picture books and the new young fiction series, which began in October with Hubble Bubble: The Glorious Granny Bake-Off – and they enjoyed the books so much that they wrote and delivered some absolutely brilliant letters to us.
Feedback like this isn’t just very heart-gladdening: it’s also an invaluable way for us to learn what parts of our books children respond to the most. In the case of the Hubble Bubble books, these six-year-olds particularly liked the humour (“very funny” came up a lot), the illustrations, and, in the case of The Glorious Granny Bake-Off, the length – which is carefully designed for a newly independent reader (“I enjoyed the book because it is long” and “I like to read chapter books” both came up).
And even better still, the letters were all fantastically illustrated – you can click each of the images below to enlarge.
There were lots of grannies:
The giant rabbit (and carrot) in The Glorious Granny Bake-Off was also very popular:
And there were even some Nosy Crows!
…And here’s the envelope it all arrived in (with some sage advice – they’ve got my number):
Thank you very, very much to all the pupils at the Charles Dickens Primary School for these wonderful letters!
If you’re new to the Hubble Bubble books, you can look inside the first picture book, Hubble Bubble, Granny Trouble, below:
Order the book online.
And here’s a look inside The Glorious Granny Bake-Off:
Order the book online.
Posted by Tom on Dec 06, 2013
December is upon us, boxes of Christmas decorations are coming down from the attic… and we’ve got one to share with you! Shifty McGifty and Slippery Sam illustrator Steven Lenton has designed a MARVELLOUS holiday decoration, featuring the one and only Shifty – and you can make it yourself at home!
Click the image below to download a high-resolution version, print it out (on card if possible) and follow Steven’s simple instructions for a delightful Shifty decoration that’ll be the envy of your friends and relations:
Perch it atop your tree! Hang it above your door! Balance it on your mantlepiece! The possibilities are practically endless. There’s a little bit of Using Scissors involved, so some adult supervision may be required. And in true Blue Peter fashion, Here’s One I Made Earlier (click the arrrows to see a step-by-step photographic guide):
You can take a look inside Shifty McGifty and Slippery Sam below – and if you’d like to get into a true holiday spirit and give the book as a gift, you can buy it online here.
For more great Shifty McGifty stuff, have a look at Steven’s blog. And if you have a go at making the decoration, tweet us a picture – we’d love to see them!
Posted by Philip Ardagh on Dec 05, 2013
Today’s guest blog post is by Philip Ardagh, author of The Grunts books, previous winner of The Roald Dahl Funny Prize (for Grubtown Tales: Stinking Rich and Just Plain Stinky, in 2009), and known trouble-maker.
The Nosy Crow Christmas party is going to be a tricky one for Nosy Crow this year. Why? Because Nosy Crow is a victim of its own success. The party is being held on the same day that the winners of the Roald Dahl Funny Prize are announced.
There are two categories: six and under, and seven to fourteen. With two Nosy Crow books in the six-and-under category — Weasels by Elys Dolan and Troll Swap by Leigh Hodgkinson — at least one of them has to lose.
Nosy Crow also has a book in the older category, The Grunts all at Sea, written by me and illustrated by Axel Scheffler.
Now, imagine the possible scenarios:
1. All three books lose, resulting much glumness all round but the opportunity to mutter “We was robbed!” and “What do they know anyway?” and to pull together with the Dunkirk spirit.
2. One book wins, and the other two lose. Great for the winner and for Nosy Crow, and the creators of the two losing books can get roaring drunk, link arms and sing ‘It Should Have Been Me’.
3. Two books win and one loses, which would be the least likely but best-case scenario for Nosy Crow as a company… and the worst case scenario for the loser. Think of solitary sobbing in the stationery cupboard.
What a party this is going to turn out to be.
Thank you, Philip “Cassandra the Prophet” Ardagh, for these entirely helpful, and not-at-all panic-inducing, projections. The winners of The Roald Dahl Funny Prize 2013 will be announced at The Cambridge Theatre, London, home to the musical version of Roald Dahl’s Matilda, on 10th December – wish us (and all of our authors and illustrators) luck!