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Tag: Kirsty Applebaum

Introducing Princess Minna!

We’re very excited to be publishing Princess Minna next month – a new full-colour, illustrated chapter book series from Kirsty Applebaum and Sahar Haghgoo.

And today we’re delighted to be sharing a preview of the first two books – you can read the first few chapters of each below!

Princess Minna lives in Castle Tall-Towers with the King and Queen, Raymond the Wizard and her best dragon friend, Lorenzo. There are often mix-ups and mishaps in the kingdom and Princess Minna loves to sort them out! She can tame unicorns, kiss frogs and fight dragons (apart from Lorenzo) and she is very good at fixing things before it’s time for bed.

In The Enchanted Forest, Princess Minna has to wake a sleeping prince before nightfall. But along the way, she finds a swan, an old lady and a very fluffy sheep – all of them in a fix! Can she help them and still reach the prince before sundown?

In The Unicorn Mix-Up, Princess Minna is so tired she gets a bit muddled and fights a unicorn, kisses a dragon and tries to tame a frog – which won’t do at all! Can she sort it all out and make a new friend along the way?

Read an extract of The Enchanted Forest here:

 

Read an extract of The Unicorn Mix-Up here:

 

Early praise for The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke

This month we published The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke – a brilliant new novel about family, secrets and terrible power, from the highly-acclaimed author of TrooFriend and The Middler, Kirsty Applebaum.

And today we’re very pleased to share these outstanding early reviews!

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…

A gripping, atmospheric and heartfelt new story for readers aged 9-12, The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke is perfect for fans of Malorie Blackman, Meg Rosoff, and Frances Hardinge.

“A modern-day fairytale with a unique voice and fantastic folkloric premise.” – Peter Bunzl, author of Cogheart

“I declare it, it’s a masterpiece!…Genius idea, beautifully, wonderfully told. I couldn’t have enjoyed it any more.” –Nicola Penfold, author of Where the World Turns Wild

“Tense and twisty, The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke is masterfully written. A page-turner with a unique and intriguing premise… This is going on my ‘keep forever’ shelves.” – Julie Pike, author of The Last Spell Breather

Read the first few chapters below:

The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke is out now – you can order a copy form Waterstones here, Amazon here, or from the Nosy Crow website here.

Don’t forget to sign up to our newsletter here to be the first to know about our new books, early previews, giveaways and much more.

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.

How Lonny Quicke came to be – A guest post by Kirsty Applebaum

This month we’re delighted to have published The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke – a gripping new novel of secrets, family and terrible power, from the acclaimed author of The Middler and TrooFriend, Kirsty Applebaum.

And today we’re very pleased to share a guest post by Kirsty on where this new story came from, which you can read below.

The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke tells the story of a boy faced with an incredibly difficult situation. There are no simple answers, no straightforward solutions. He just has to keep moving forward, taking the decisions that seem best to him at the time.

The story began as an entry for a competition back in 2014, to write the opening of a children’s book. I had recently read Blake Snyder’s screenwriting guide Save the Cat, which recommends having a scene early on in your story showing the protagonist performing an act of kindness, to get the audience on-side. I decided to try it. Instead of saving a cat though, my protagonist saved a dying rabbit – with just a touch of his hand.

I’m happy to say my entry won first prize, but at that point, I had no idea whether it could grow into a full-length story. I let it sit in the back of my mind for three years while I completed my MA and wrote my first children’s novel, The Middler.

When The Middler was complete, I returned to my magical, rabbit-saving boy. And it turned out my mind had performed that astounding trick the subconscious can sometimes do, given the seed of a creative idea and a little bit of time: it had woven a network of themes, images and concepts that might just possibly come together to create a story.

It was clear, for example, that life was a central theme. This led me to investigate May festivals – celebrations of life’s renewal in springtime – and to consider imagining a whole new festival of my own.

The magical, folkish feel of the original scene had cemented itself in my mind. It connected with memories of much-loved fairy tales from my childhood and enchanting real-life locations, including my own home town of Winchester with its rich history and ancient gated walls.

Winchester

The mixture of fantasy and contemporary life in the original scene triggered memories of the Cottingley fairy photographs – beautiful, faked pictures created by two Victorian girls, depicting themselves with fairies in their garden.

As a young teenager, I’d not only loved the pictures, I’d also been gripped by the idea that some people had really believed in them – which led me to wonder what it might be like to really have a magical, fairy-tale power? Would it be a gift or a curse?

My rabbit-saving boy idea also fused itself to something else in my mind – my desire to write a book involving stories within stories. Some of my favourite novels have used this technique – including Holes by Louis Sachar and my favourite childhood book, The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar by Roald Dahl.

I wanted to do this myself – embed shorter stories in a longer text, creating connections and anticipation in the reader’s mind as they progress through the novel.

I also wanted to write a book in which the circumstances were the true cause of the protagonist’s problems, rather than evil or wicked adversary. I felt strongly that this might be the right story for that concept. Yes, I wanted to put all of these things into my new book – no problem, right?

In the meantime, the brilliant Nosy Crow had bought The Middler as part of a two-book deal and they wanted my unwritten book about the rabbit-saving boy for my second novel. Hurrah! I set to work.

I researched. I wrote. I decided it was all rubbish and started again.
I researched. I wrote. I decided it was all rubbish and started again.
I researched. I wrote. I decided it was all rubbish and started again.
It became clear that I’d got myself into an incredibly difficult situation.
My publisher had bought the book.
But the book was completely unwritable.
Arrrrrrgh.
ARRRRRRRRRRRRGH.

I became a total expert at occupying myself with absolutely anything other than the story I was supposed to be writing. Peak displacement activity was reached when I wrote a whole different book instead: TrooFriend. It was about a robot. Not a rabbit-saving boy insight.

Happily, Nosy Crow loved TrooFriend. They decided to publish it as my second novel and gave me an extra year in which to complete The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke. So I got back to work. There was nowhere to run this time. Like Lonny, I just had to keep moving forward. There were no simple answers; no straightforward solutions. The story could go in a thousand different directions – I just had to find a way that worked for me.

And – eventually – I did manage to grow a story from that original scene. I built a world inspired by spring festivals, fairy tales and the ancient walled city I grew up in. I created my own folk stories and embedded them into the book. I put Lonny into a horrendous situation, instead of confronting him with an evil adversary. Finally, I’d found my way through.

And this, at its heart, is what The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke is all about. Sometimes life throws us problems that have no single, straightforward solution. We just have to find a path through that works for us. That’s what I did while writing this book, and that’s what Lonny does too. Faced with an incredibly difficult situation, he just keeps moving forward, taking the decisions that seem best to him at the time. And – eventually – he finds his way through.

Thank you, Kirsty!

The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke, currently Blackwell’s Children’s Book of the Month, is available now – you can order a copy from Blackwell’s here, Waterstones here, or Amazon here.

Read the first few chapters below:

The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke is Blackwell’s Children’s Book of the Month

Blackwell’s Booksellers have announced their Children’s Book of the Month for May – and we’re absolutely delighted that The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke, by Kirsty Applebaum, has been chosen!

From the highly-acclaimed author of The Middler and TrooFriend, The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke is a gripping new novel of secrets and terrible power – perfect for fans of Malorie Blackman, Meg Rosoff, and Frances Hardinge.

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…

Read the first few chapters:

You can order a copy of The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke from Blackwell’s here.

Don’t forget to sign up to our books newsletter here to be the first to know about our latest news, including exclusive previews, discounts and giveaways.

Take a look inside The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke

In May we’re absolutely thrilled to be publishing The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke – a brilliant new novel about family, secrets and terrible power, from the acclaimed author of The Middler and TrooFriend, Kirsty Applebaum.

And today we’re delighted to be sharing an early preview of the book – you can read the first few chapters below!

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…

A gripping, atmospheric and heartfelt new story for readers aged 9-12, The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke is perfect for fans of Malorie Blackman, Meg Rosoff, and Frances Hardinge.

The Life and Time of Lonny Quicke is out on May 6th! You can pre-order a copy from Waterstones here, Bookshop.org here and from Amazon here.

If you’d like to stay up-to-date with all of our books news, including award news, early previews, and giveaways, you can sign up to our newsletter here.

Four Nosy Crow books nominated for the 2021 CILIP Carnegie Medal

The nomination lists for the 2021 CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Awards has been published today – and we’re delighted that four Nosy Crow books have been nominated for the Carnegie Medal this year!

The CILIP Carnegie Medal is one of the UK’s oldest children’s book awards, awarded to outstanding books for children and young people, and judged solely by librarians.

TrooFriend by Kirsty Applebaum, Orion Lost by Alastair Chisholm, Talking to the Moon by S.E. Durrant, and The Girl Who Stole an Elephant by Nizrana Farook, have all been nominated. You can take a look inside each of the books below.

Troofriend:

Buy the book.

Orion Lost:

Buy the book.

Talking to the Moon:

Buy the book.

The Girl Who Stole an Elephant:

Buy the book.

You can read more about the awards, and view the full list of nominations, here. The longlist for the Carnegie Medal will be published in February, followed by the shortlist in March, and overall winners in June.

Congratulations Kirsty, Alastair, Sue, and Nizrana!

Eight Nosy Crow Books included in the 2020 BookTrust Great Books Guide

We’re delighted to announce that eight Nosy Crow books are included in the 2020 BookTrust Great Books Guide! This printed guide of the BookTrust’s 100 favourite books from the previous year will be posted to all primary schools in England and Wales – and is also available to read on the BookTrust website, here.

100 First Words by Edward Underwood, Farmyard Friends: Portly Pig by Axel Scheffler, This is a Dog by Ross Collins, Nuts by Lou Peacock and Yasmeen Ismail, Wigglesbottom Primary: Break-Time Bunnies by Pamela Butchart and Becka Moor, I, Cosmo by Carlie Sorosiak, Orion Lost by Alastair Chisholm, and TrooFriend by Kirsty Applebaum have all been included in the 2020 guide.

100 First Words is a beautifully illustrated first words book and must-have for any nursery bookshelf. Featuring gorgeous artwork by homeware designer Edward Underwood, which is sure to appeal to parents and toddlers alike, little ones will love discovering what’s under the bold, easy-to-lift card flaps.


Buy the book.

From award-winning and bestselling illustrator, Farmyard Friends: Portly Pig is one of four in the friendly Farmyard Friends series. These board books are perfect for little ones who are learning about animals and animal sounds.

Buy the book.

This is a Dog is a delightfully silly story about a mischievous dog who loves the limelight, perfect for dog lovers young and old. Created by the winner of the UKLA Book Award and Amnesty CILIP Greenaway Honour, Ross Collins.

Buy the book.

Nuts is a hilarious picture book about learning to share, with deceptively simple text by Lou Peacock and energetic artwork by Yasmeen Ismail.

Buy the book.

Wigglesbottom Primary: Break-Time Bunnies is the sixth title in this fantastic, chaotic, and hilarious series. Written by award-winning Pamela Butchart and beautifully illustrated in two-colour by Becka Moor.

Buy the book.

A moving, funny, and tender story for 9-12 readers, with a wonderfully unique hero and an incredible voice, I, Cosmo is perfect for fans of Rebecca Stead and Kate DiCamillo – Charlotte’s Web meets Little Miss Sunshine.

Buy the book.

Orion Lost is a hugely gripping sci-fi adventure featuring aliens, space pirates, AI, and tons of action. When catastrophe strikes on the spaceship Orion, it is up to Beth and her friends to save the day…

Buy the book.

Unique, gripping, and sinister, TrooFriend is a story about artificial intelligence, friendship, and what it means to be human. From the highly acclaimed author of The Middler, Kirsty Applebaum.

Buy the book.

Congratulations to all our authors and illustrators included in the guide!

TrooFriend Competition Winners!

Today we’re excited to announce the winner of our TrooFriend competition to design a futuristic invention! To celebrate the publication of TrooFriend by Kirsty Applebaum – a captivating story about friendship, identity and artificial intelligence – we invited readers of The Week Junior to think big and come up with an idea for an invention for the future that could help people in their everyday lives.

We received hundreds of great entries, from robotic wardrobes to rubbish eaters and medical robots to keep children company in hospital. Kirsty Applebaum faced a tough decision, but we are thrilled to announce that she has selected 9-year-old Alessia as the winner, for her invention of a Solar Powered Micro Fibre Caterpillar!

Kirsty said: “This ocean-cleaning robot caterpillar is brilliant. It addresses a huge real-life problem – the presence of plastic microfibres in our seas – so it’s an invention that would potentially benefit everyone on the planet. It’s also a stylish, appealing and memorable design so people would enjoy using it. Well done Alessia!”

You can see her entry below:

 

We are also delighted to announce two runners up. First of all, 11-year-old Ezra, for his invention of the E-Chef!

Kirsty said: “The E-Chef looks great, performs lots of useful kitchen tasks and would add so much fun to making dinner. I particularly like the way Ezra has used reviews and advertising phrases, such as ‘so useful in the kitchen’, ‘made life so much easier’ and ‘as seen on Master Chef’. Fantastic, Ezra!”

You can see his entry here:

And our second runner up, 10-year-old Archie, for his invention of the Good Rubbish Collector!

Kirsty said: “The Good Rubbish Collector solves a real-life problem with a clear, simple solution. Years ago, empty bottles could be returned to shops for a small amount of money. Archie has updated this idea with an invention more suitable for today’s world in which many people use bank cards instead of cash. This could be really useful in cleaning up our streets. Thank you, Archie!”

You can see his entry here:

Alessia will receive a signed copy of TrooFriend, along with a Wonder Workshop Dash Robot. Ezra and Archie will both be receiving a signed copy of TrooFriend.

Thank you to all of the children who sent in their inventions. We were delighted to receive so many entries and it was great to see everyone’s creativity!