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Author: Tom Bonnick

Bid for original, signed artwork by Axel Scheffler – and help raise money for Ukraine

Today we’re very pleased to launch auctions for five pieces of original, signed and dated artwork by Pip and Posy illustrator Axel Scheffler, raising money for Ukraine.

There are five different signed, dated original illustrations by Axel available to bid on, and all proceeds will go to the emergency Ukraine fundraising campaign by refugee charity Three Peas, raising funds to provide basic necessities at the Ukrainian border: food, warmth and hygiene products.

These five pieces have been created by Axel to show support for the people of Ukraine, featuring the colours of the Ukrainian flag.

Here are each of the pieces being auctioned:

Bid for this piece.

Bid for this piece.

Bid for this piece.

Bid for this piece.

Bid for this piece.

Each piece of artwork is a signed and dated original – if you’ve always wanted your own original illustration by Axel, here’s your chance!

The auction will run for 10 days, and end on Sunday May 1st at 6pm.

Please do bid generously for this hugely important cause – and good luck!

You can also donate directly to Three Peas’ emergency fundraising campaign for Ukraine here.

About the artist:

Axel Scheffler is an award-winning, internationally-acclaimed illustrator of some of the most well-loved children’s books, including The Gruffalo, The Room on the Broom, Stick Man, The Snail and the Whale, the Pip and Posy books, and many more. His books have been published in many languages and his work has been exhibited all around the world.

About the charity:

Three Peas was founded in 2016 to support those who have had to leave their lives behind. Their Ukrainian appeal is working to raise funds for their long term partners, now at Ukraine’s borders, to provide basic necessities: food, warmth and hygiene products.

Adam-2 is now available as an audiobook

Today we’re delighted to share a brand new audiobook edition of Adam-2 by Alastair Chisholm – an exciting and hugely gripping science fiction thriller, from the author of the highly-acclaimed, Waterstones Children’s Book Prize-shortlisted Orion Lost.

And you can listen to a preview of the new audiobook edition below!

The robot Adam-2 has been locked in the basement of a lost building for over two hundred years – until one day he is discovered by two children, and emerges into a world ruined by a civil war between humans and advanced intelligence.

Hunted by both sides, Adam discovers that he holds the key to the war, and the power to end it – to destroy one side and save the other. But which side is right?

Surrounded by enemies who want to use him, and allies who mistrust him, Adam must decide who – and what – he really is.

With incredible twists and turns, and an action-packed story, Adam-2 is a thrilling, unputdownable adventure.

And we’re delighted that this new audiobook edition has been brilliantly read by the Scottish non-binary actor Maggie Bain.

You can buy the audiobook of Adam-2 from Amazon, Audible, and Apple now – and you can listen to a preview of the audiobook below.

Buy the audiobook.

You can also read the opening chapters of the book below:

And you can order a signed copy of Adam-2 from Waterstones here, and the standard edition from Bookshop.org here, and from Amazon here.

Nosy Crow acquire brilliantly original middle-grade adventure from début author Fiona Longmuir

Nosy Crow is delighted to announce the acquisition and publication of Looking for Emily, a hugely gripping mystery adventure from début author, Fiona Longmuir. Looking for Emily is set to publish in January 2022.

Tom Bonnick, Senior Commissioning Editor at Nosy Crow, bought world rights to Fiona’s debut from Julia Silk at Charlie Campbell Literary Agents.

Full of brilliantly original twists and turns, Looking for Emily is a contemporary, fast-paced middle-grade adventure, from a fresh and exciting new voice in children’s books.

When twelve-year-old Lily moves to the sleepy seaside town of Edge, she is sure that nothing exciting is ever going to happen to her again. But when she stumbles upon a secret museum hidden in the middle of town, she realises that there might be more to her new home than meets the eye. The Museum of Emily is filled with the belongings of one seemingly ordinary little girl, a little girl who, many years ago, disappeared from the town without a trace. With the help of her new friends Sam and Jay, Lily is determined to solve the mystery and find out who Emily was, why she disappeared and who has created the strange, hidden museum.

Tom Bonnick, Senior Commissioning Editor at Nosy Crow, comments: “I read a one-sentence pitch for Looking for Emily during a Twitter pitching event, and was immediately and completely hooked by the premise – a hidden museum dedicated to a single, mysterious person. Once I had the full manuscript in my hands, I just couldn’t put it down – it’s a truly original story, with fantastic twists, a brilliant trio of protagonists, and a villain worthy of Cape Fear’s Max Cady. And it’s a great privilege to be working with Fiona on her debut novel – she is a brilliant new talent to look out for!”

Author Fiona Longmuir comments: “I’ve been telling stories my whole life and I could not be more excited to be telling this one with Nosy Crow. This book contains all of my favourite things: a mystery, the seaside, copious amounts of chips, an unreasonably large library. It has my whole heart and it’s been such a total joy to work on it with Nosy Crow, who not only accepted but delighted in all its oddities. I’ve been dreaming of this since I was a little kid and now that it’s here, it’s everything I hoped it would be.”

Fiona Longmuir was born in Paisley, Scotland. Shortly after, she picked up a pencil and never really put it back down. She writes stories about stubborn, oddball kids, having had a lot of personal experience in this area. Her novels have been shortlisted for the Bath Children’s Novel Award and the Joan Aiken Future Classics Prize. Fiona now lives in the Irish countryside with her brilliant partner and their very surly rabbit.

Orion Lost has been shortlisted for the 2021 Waterstones Children’s Book Prize

Today the shortlists for the 2021 Waterstones Children’s Book Prize have been announced, and I am absolutely delighted that Orion Lost, the debut novel by Alastair Chisholm, has been recognised in the Younger Readers category.

It is an incredible prize for any book to be shortlisted for – and never more so than now, after a year of bookshops being closed, with all of the challenges around visibility that this has created for debut novels like Orion Lost (which published in January of last year – just a few months before the start of the first lockdown).

But I’m also especially happy that Orion Lost in particular has been shortlisted, for other, non pandemic-related reasons, too.

There is a sort of received wisdom in children’s publishing that science fiction can be a bit of a tough sell – that there isn’t as much of a market for it as there is for other genres; that it’s too niche. If you subject this idea to any sort of scrutiny it doesn’t really make an enormous amount of sense: why shouldn’t sci fi sell, given its enormous successes in other areas of our culture like film and television? Why does it face such a different fate to, for instance, fantasy – a perennially popular (and hugely competitive) genre of children’s fiction? I suspect, to be honest, that it has become a bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Before I acquired Orion Lost, though, I was as guilty as anyone else of believing this myth. When I received it on submission from Alastair’s agent, Caroline, I was initially hesitant – I read the pitch and found myself asking ‘Will this sell?’ and ‘Who is its audience?’ But any skepticism I might have had for the subject matter was immediately overcome as soon as I started reading the story – and once I’d started, I simply could not (please forgive the awfully overused cliche) put it down.

It is an unbelievably gripping, fast-paced, and exciting story, and while it has all of the ingredients of classic science fiction – spaceships, aliens, A.I., light-speed travel – it’s told in a way that feels completely contemporary, hugely accessible, and with genuinely broad appeal. And at its heart it is absolutely a human story. One of the things that Alastair does brilliantly, I think, is to use all of the elements and conventions of the genre as a vehicle to explore big ideas and tell stories that are fundamentally about people and human nature. I remember being struck by something Nosy Crow’s senior sales manager, Frances, said to me after she’d read it: that if you stripped out all of the science fiction elements (the space travel, the aliens), it would still work as a story, because the human element – the story of the relationships between the characters and the journey they go on – is so compelling.

And the other thing that I usually tell people when I recommend Orion Lost is that it has what are – and I say this with no hyperbole – some of the best twists I have ever read in a submission. And not just one twist! There are *multiple* moments in the story that come as such brilliant, unexpected surprises that (apologies for a second overused cliche) when I first read them I did actual gasps-out-loud. They are the sort of brilliantly devised, rug-pulling reveals that as a reader you’d normally be delighted to find once in a book – and Alastair delivers at least three of them.

So, this is the book that made me a convert to middle grade science fiction. And I knew, when I was working on it with Alastair and after it had been published, that we might still have something of an uphill battle in front of us: that convincing people to pick up this book and take a chance on something different might be a challenge (and that was before the pandemic…). But the thing I was even more certain of was that as soon as people did pick it up, they’d be sold, just like I was – that if we could just get it in front of readers, then Alastair’s brilliant story would do the rest. It’s a book that I knew would rely on word-of-mouth recommendation – and from booksellers in particular.

Very gratifyingly, thanks to Nosy Crow’s brilliant sales, marketing and publicity teams, that’s exactly what we started to see once the book was out in the world – in all of the reviews for the book, on social media, from booksellers, bloggers, teachers and librarians, and in The Times, where it was named Children’s Book of the Week. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve read some version of, “This isn’t the sort of thing I’d usually pick up, but I loved it.” And then, of course, Covid hit, and bookshops closed, and suddenly, opportunities to get debut novels like Orion Lost in front of readers – books that would normally rely so heavily on the passion and knowledge and enthusiasm of informed booksellers – shrank dramatically.

And that is why I am so delighted that the book has now been shortlisted for this prize: because it means that Waterstones booksellers up and down the country will be recommending it to more and more readers, giving those readers the opportunity to discover something completely new, and allowing Orion Lost to find the audience that I have always hoped for it.

You can find out more about the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize, and read all of the shortlists, here – and you can take a look inside Orion Lost below:

And you can also listen to a preview of the audiobook edition of Orion Lost here:

You can buy Orion Lost from Waterstones here.

The winners of the prize will be announced on Thursday, July 1 – congratulations, Alastair, and good luck!

The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke is now available as an audiobook

Today we’re delighted to share a brand new audiobook edition of The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke – the brilliant new novel from Kirsty Applebaum, author of The Middler, about family, secrets and a terrible power.

And today you can listen to a preview of the new audiobook edition, beautifully read by David Dawson.

Lonny is a lifeling. He has the power to heal any living creature and bring it back from the dead. But he pays a price for this gift – by lengthening the creature’s life, he shortens his own. So Lonny has to be careful, has to stay hidden in the forest. Because if people knew what he could do, Lonny would be left with no life at all…

You can buy the audiobook of The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke from Audible, Amazon, and Apple now – and you can listen to a preview of the audiobook below:

Buy the audiobook.

And you can also read the opening of the book below:

You can buy the print edition of The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke from Blackwells (where the book is currently Children’s Book of the Month) here, from Waterstones here, and from Amazon here.

Otherland is now available as an audiobook

Today we’re delighted to share a brand new audiobook edition of Otherland by Louie Stowell – a darkly funny, action-packed fantasy adventure, perfect for fans of The Strangeworlds Travel Agency, Malamander, and The Land of Roar, from the author of the highly-acclaimed Dragon in the Library series.

And you can listen to a preview of the new audiobook edition of Otherland, brilliantly read by Gemma Whelan, below!

Otherland is a dangerous magical underworld – a place where appearances can be deceiving and anything can happen. A world of gods, vampires, and fairies. It’s also… horrible.

When life-long friends Myra and Rohan discover that Rohan’s baby sister Shilpa has been stolen and taken to Otherland, the only way to rescue her is by taking part in a deadly game – three impossible challenges set by the Fairy Queen of Otherland. Win the game, and Rohan and Myra can go home with Shilpa – but lose, and they’ll be trapped in Otherland forever…

You can buy the audiobook of Otherland from Audible, Amazon, and Apple now – and you can listen to a preview of the audiobook below:

Buy the audiobook.

And you can also read the opening of the book below:

You can buy the print edition of Otherland from Waterstones here, from Bookshop.org here, and from Amazon here.

Nosy Crow is the only book publisher ever to win TWO Queen’s Awards for Enterprise for International Trade

Nosy Crow, the UK’s fastest-growing independent children’s publisher, today celebrates a second consecutive Queen’s Award for Enterprise for International Trade, the most prestigious business award in the UK.

It is the only book publisher ever to win a second award and the only publisher to have won one in the last 10 years.

Nosy Crow is one of 205 organisations nationally to be recognised with a prestigious Queen’s Award this year and, within that, one of 122 recognised for its excellence in International Trade.

Employing 56 people, Nosy Crow is a multi-award-winning publisher of child-focused, parent-friendly children’s books and ebooks for ages 0–12. It began publishing in 2011 and celebrates its 10th anniversary this year.

Nosy Crow is now the 11th biggest children’s publisher in terms of UK sales to the consumer and the 6thbiggest preschool publisher (Nielsen).

In 2020, Nosy Crow’s export sales were 74% of total sales, up from 67% in 2019. Based on the Publishers Association statistics collection scheme in 2019 Nosy Crow had 2.1% of the UK children’s market, but a staggering 10.8% of UK publishers’ children’s books exports.

Adrian Soar, proud at the age of 80 to be Nosy Crow’s Commercial Director and Co-Founder, says:

“Our global success is due to the great work of our authors and illustrators, and to the achievements of the terrific team at Nosy Crow. We are delighted that for the second time this has been recognised by the accolade of a Queen’s Award, a first for the book publishing industry.”

Nosy Crow staff recommend their favourite independent bookshops

With many bookshops around the country re-opening their doors for the first time in months today, we wanted to share some recommendations for our favourite independent bookshops, from the staff at Nosy Crow. Here are just a few of the bookshops we’re looking forward to returning too soon…

Camilla Reid, Nosy Crow’s Editorial Director, recommends Mostly Books in Abingdon, Hungerford Bookshop in Hungerford, and The Mainstreet Trading Company in St Boswells:

“My bookshop recommendations are Mostly Books in Abingdon and Hungerford Bookshop in Hungerford – and if I have one ambition this year it is to make it to The Mainstreet Trading Company in St Boswells because I’ve never been there!”

Catherine Stokes, Nosy Crow’s Head of Sales and Marketing, recommends The Old Hall Bookshop in Brackley:

“There is a definite buzz in Northamptonshire /Oxfordshire – the Old Hall Bookshop, Brackley is open again next week.  Our conversation has been duller in the absence of the brilliant recommendations of Chris and her team (always winners, they know us so well) and we are counting the days to return to this beautiful bookshop that feels like home.  Pick up plants on the way in through the front garden, browse the specialist children’s and antiquarian book rooms, choose cards and gorgeous stationery and take a cuppa and a book into the newly landscaped back garden for a few minutes (or hours) sheer indulgence.  Race you…”

Elizabeth Jenner, Nosy Crow’s Editor at Large, recommends Linghams in Heswall, Wirral:

“My favourite independent bookshop is Linghams in Heswall, Wirral, which was my local bookshop when I was growing up. As a child, I used to love browsing the bright, busy shelves and choosing my very first books here. As I grew older, the shop was always a wonderful treasure trove of new recommendations and exciting discoveries. It has been great to see Linghams continue to go from strength to strength, and be involved in so many amazing initiatives and events. I’ve moved back to my hometown during lockdown, and – over 30 years later – I’m still really looking forward to the day I can pop in and explore those beautiful shelves of children’s books again!”

Frances Moloney, Nosy Crow’s Operations Manager, recommends Pages of Hackney:

“Pages of Hackney have been a lockdown godsend. From click and collect, to bike courier, to post – they have made sure everyone in the local area and further afield have all the books they need for #stayathome. Can’t wait to visit in person soon!”

Halimah Manan, Nosy Crow’s Assistant Editor (Fiction), recommends Round Table Books in Brixton:

“Round Table Books is a cosy bookshop in Brixton which I can’t wait to visit when bookshops re-open. They have a fantastic selection of inclusive books for children and lovely staff who are always happy to chat and provide you with some great recommendations.”

Kate Wilson, Nosy Crow’s Managing Director, recommends Booths in Hay on Wye:

“Richard Booth’s Bookshop in Hay-on-Wye acts on me like a magnet. Its seductive big window, always beautifully dressed, gives only the smallest indication of the gorgeousness and plenty inside. It’s a kind of cathedral of books, with vaulted ceilings and a splendid wide wooden staircase. Oh, and it smells of wood and books and sometimes a tiny bit of wet dog. It’s mainly a second hand bookshop and I have bought local interest titles and books about poodles (don’t ask) from its superbly navigable second-hand shelves. But at the front of the shop there’s an expertly curated range of new books, including children’s books: I always feel properly flattered when I find Nosy Crow books in there, and crestfallen when a Nosy Crow book I would have hoped would catch their eye isn’t on display. I never fail to buy a book when I go in there, which is part of my definition of a great bookshop. There’s a café serving excellent Welsh rarebit and you can even sit outside when it’s sunny. I buy really lovely birthday cards there, too. As I write this, I realise how much I am looking forward to visiting it in mid-April.”

Kirsty Stansfield, Nosy Crow’s Head of Fiction, recommends Winstones in Sidmouth:

“I’m looking forward to heading into Winstones in Sidmouth, Devon, as soon as I can. It’s always bright and cheerful and well-stocked, and I’ll buy something hefty to take to the beach and keep the seagulls away from my ice-cream.”

Leila Mauger, Nosy Crow’s Production Manager, also recommends Linghams in Heswall, Wirral:

“I would like to recommend my fave local from home, which is Linghams, Heswall. As a teen I went to a couple of book launches there and they always went all out. It was buzzing. The shop itself is nice and cosy, no glaring lights. They provide a good balance of choice of books without bursting at the seams. They have a lovely Children’s corner which is a perfect nook for story time. It has a bit of a library feel as well as that of a bookshop, which adds to its coziness for me.”

Rebecca Mason, Nosy Crow’s Publicity Manager, recommends Pritchards in Crosby, Liverpool:

“I can’t wait to walk back through the doors of Pritchards when they can FINALLY open again. It’s a lovely bookshop based in Crosby in Liverpool, the bookshop that was there for a Teenage Me after school, and for a Slightly More Grown Up Me who found herself back at her family home in a pandemic and turning to their Click and Collect service… Their shelves are like a treasure trove – I have always managed to find something exciting and unexpected, every time I go in, and I can’t wait to visit for a wander, a chat, and to uncover something entirely new again.”

Tom Bonnick, Nosy Crow’s Senior Commissioning Editor, recommends Phlox Books in Leyton and Storytellers Inc in St Annes-on-Sea:

“I can’t wait to visit Phlox Books in Leyton, East London again. They have a fantastically well-curated selection, and I always discovers something new there and invariably end up buying it, even if I’ve absolutely sworn to myself that I’m only going in for a browse. And they serve great coffee and have an excellent wine list – I’m enormously looking forward to sitting outside with a v cold glass of Picpoul and some crisps. Throughout lockdown I’ve also been buying books over Twitter from Storytellers Inc, whose recommendations and online hand-selling have been amazing – and I very much hope to be able to visit one day soon.”

And we’d love to hear about your favourite independent bookshops too – do share your recommendations with us on Twitter.

How to be Me is now available as an audiobook

Today we’re delighted to share a brand new audiobook edition of How to be Me by Cath Howe – a beautiful, moving story of family, friendship and self-discovery, from the author of the high-acclaimed novels Ella on the Outside and Not My Fault.

Since his mum died, Lucas and his dad don’t seem to understand each other at all – it’s almost as if they’re speaking different languages. With a long, hot summer facing him, Lucas is dreading the drama club that his dad has signed him up for – he doesn’t know how to be around new people and he can’t standperforming. But the people Lucas meets at the club force him to open up and start talking, and when disaster strikes, Lucas is forced to step in and help. Can his new-found friends teach Lucas how to be himself?

You can buy the audiobook of How to be Me from Audible, Amazon, and Apple now – and you can listen to a preview of the audiobook below.

Filled with empathy and insight, and sensitively touching on issues including grief, anxiety, loneliness with great understanding and an incredible lightness of touch, How to be Me is a kind, heartwarming, and uplifting story – perfect for fans of Jacqueline Wilson and Lisa Thompson.

You can also read the opening of the book below:

And you can buy the print edition of How to be Me from Waterstones here, from Bookshop.org here, and from Amazon here.

The Wizard in the Wood is now available as an audiobook

Today we’re delighted to share a brand new audiobook edition of The Wizard in the Wood by Louie Stowell – the third instalment in the funny, exciting, magical, and action-packed Dragon in the Library series.

Kit, Josh and Alita are heading back to school – and they’re excited to discover that they’re getting a brand new library, which also means getting their own wizard librarian… and a dragon! But when something VERY BAD happens at the new library, it’s up to Kit and her friends to save the world one more time.

Brilliantly narrated by Rosie Jones, you can buy the audiobook of The Wizard in the Wood from Amazon, Audible, and Apple now – and you can listen to a preview of the audiobook below.

Buy the audiobook.

You can also read the opening of the book below:

And you can buy the print edition of The Wizard in the Wood from Waterstones here, from Bookshop.org here, and from Amazon here.

And if you’re new to this magical series, you can listen to a preview of the audiobook edition of the first book, The Dragon in the Library, below too:

Buy the audiobook.

Luna Rae is Not Alone is now available as an audiobook

Today we’re delighted to share a brand new audiobook edition of Luna Rae is Not Alone by Hayley Webster – a wise, warm and uplifting coming-of-age story about families and friendship, from a beautiful new voice in children’s fiction.

Beautifully narrated by Rosie Jones, you can buy the audiobook of Luna Rae is Not Alone from Audible, Amazon, and Apple now – and you can listen to a preview of the audiobook below.

Buy the audiobook.

You can also read the opening of the book below:

And you can buy the print edition of Luna Rae is Not Alone from Waterstones here, from Bookshop.org here, and from Amazon here.

Friendship is magic: Louie Stowell’s favourite friendships in fiction

Today’s guest post is by Louie Stowell, author of the highly-acclaimed Dragon in the Library series – the third book in the series, The Wizard in the Wood, is out now.

I’m not interested in lone wolf heroes, forging ahead on a silent quest. Even The Witcher has someone to say “Hmmm” at a lot.

Heroes are at their most interesting to me when they’re embedded in a friendship group, or at least a pair. Like in life, you find out most about yourself through your relationships with other people. And, when you’re on a magical adventure, friends are often how you stay alive.

My Dragon in the Library series is as much about Kit’s friendship group as it is about Kit herself. But that doesn’t mean it’s all about holding hands skipping through the fields singing tra la la. In The Wizard in the Wood, Kit makes mistakes and hurts her friends. If they forgive her… well, that’s a spoiler. But friendship isn’t just about togetherness, it’s also about arguments and tension. It’s about secrets and unspoken truths. That’s where the power comes from – the complexity.

One of the most joyful things about writing this series has been to think about heroes as a community – a group of people with contrasting strengths and weaknesses. Your friends help you be a better version of yourself, and you help them back. Alita helps Kit be honest with herself. Kit helps Josh step outside his comfort zone. Kit helps Alita boost her self-confidence. But they also argue like cats in a sack and make fun of each other. They’ve been SO much fun to write.

So here’s to fictional friends – and here are a few of my favourites, in the order I encountered them…

Frodo and Sam in The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

This is a deeply problematic friendship – a servant and master with wildly unequal power dynamics. Sam’s clearly in love with Frodo too, so it’s unequal in that way too. But  I’ve always loved that pure loyalty from Sam in the face of suffering and despair. As a child, reading Lord of the Rings, I re-wrote the ending so that Sam went west with Frodo at the end. I couldn’t bear them being apart.

The Scooby Gang in Buffy the Vampire Slayer

“I guess I’m starting to understand why there’s no ancient prophecy about a Chosen One… and her friends.”

I’ve been re-watching Buffy over lockdown, and we recently watched the end of season four, which has the vampire Spike sow discord between Buffy and her friends. He pushes on all their points of tension to split them apart. But their friendship’s stronger than that, and they find a way back to each other. Part of what makes Buffy the Vampire Slayer such a great show is the way it messes with the Chosen One myth, and embeds her in a community. She’s not the big lonely brooder – she has fun with her friends, she squabbles, she gets cross when they borrow her clothes and spill food on them. I definitely had this gang in mind when creating Kit and her friends. That mess, and the strength that comes from a group of people who all love each other.

Daisy and Hazel in the Murder Most Unladylike series by Robin Stevens

Two awesome girls who solve crimes. I love the mirroring of Holmes and Watson, but the books take them SO far beyond that. It’s not a simple friendship, and there are power dynamics at play, but it grows and grows through the books in the most wonderful way.

Amira and Leo in Moonchild: Voyage of the Lost and Found by Aisha Bushby

Aisha is one of the most emotionally astute writers out there and, as someone with next to zero self knowledge of my own emotions, reading her books can sometimes feel like being personally called out. But, personal discomfort aside, she gives good friendship. In Moonchild we meet Samira, an angry, messy person who can see the emotions of others, and Leo, a quieter presence. I love the contrast between them, and the way they navigate the (literal and metaphorical) seas together, finding answers and themselves.

Sami and Joseph and Sami and Adam in Boy, Everywhere by AM Dassu

Yes, I’m cheating. But it’s a book so rich in relationships that I couldn’t pick just one. The main character, Sami, has to flee his home because of a war. Joseph is his best friend from his old life. Adam is a boy he meets when he’s fleeing danger. Both are some of the most convincing child friendships I’ve read in a very long time.

Thank you, Louie! The Wizard in the Wood is out now – you can take a look inside the book below, and you can buy the book online from Waterstones here, from Bookshop.org here, from Amazon here, and directly from Nosy Crow here.