Related to: 'Victoria Kann'

Orion Children's Books

Ruin and Rising

Leigh Bardugo
Authors:
Leigh Bardugo
Wren & Rook

Dogs in Space: The Amazing True Story of Belka and Strelka

Victoria Southgate, Iris Deppe
Contributors:
Victoria Southgate, Iris Deppe

Meet Belka and Strelka, the two dogs who changed the face of space history and became international celebrities in the process!In 1960, two stray dogs were plucked from the streets of Moscow to become space pioneers. This quirky and delightful picture book tells the incredible true story of these heroic strays. Selected from a number of potential canine cosmonauts, Belka and Strelka are put through their paces on the ground, as they practice rocket simulations and wearing spacesuits, before being launched into outer space as the first ever living creatures to successfully orbit the Earth. Miraculously, the dogs survive the mission and upon their return embark on a tour of the USSR, clad in their carefully tailored jumpsuits - one red, one green - becoming international celebrities. As for their legacy, less than a year after their safe return the Soviet space programme felt confident enough to send the first human into space.

Franklin Watts

The Story of Paintings

Mick Manning, Brita Granström
Contributors:
Mick Manning, Brita Granström

A friendly and inspiring introduction to art history, telling the stories of the world's greatest paintings and artists from prehistory to the modern dayThe Story of Paintings begins with the cave paintings of our Stone Age ancestors and continues through to the modern day. Mick Manning and Brita Granström take your on a tour of their personally selected gallery which showcases the work of some of the world's most famous artists and few a less well-known ones. The artists featured include van Eyck, da Vinci, Bruegel, Rembrandt, Velázquez, JMW Turner, Van Gogh, Monet, Matisse, Georgia O'Keefe, Picasso, Frida Kahlo and Jackson Pollock as well as Dame Laura Knight and Kalan Khan. The friendly text and illustrations help children to appreciate the art, highlighting interesting biographical details and picking out key details to spot. The book's large format means the art is reproduced on a wonderfully impactful scale. This really is a book to give and treasure. The creative team of Mick Manning and Brita Granström are well-known for their ground breaking children's information books. Their many awards range the TES Information Book Award for What's Under the Bed? and the English Association Non-fiction award for Charlie's War Illustrated.

Wayland

British Seashore

Victoria Munson
Authors:
Victoria Munson

Easy-to-follow identification guides for nature-loving children who want to find out more about British seaside wildlife, in rockpools or on a coastal walk. Includes the most common plants, insects, crustaceans, seasweeds, molluscs and birds found on British seashores today. From shells and anemones, to jellyfish and crabs, lugworms, urchins, sandhoppers, butterflies and gulls, a world of wildlife waits for you to discover it. Full descriptions of each, along with their scientific name, size, family and food. Stunning large colour photographs help to make identification easy. Includes fascinating information about rock pools, the tides, food chains and safety at the beach.Become a nature detective and explore the natural world around you. If you enjoy this book, then why not search out the other titles in this series: British Birds; British Mammals; British Trees; British Wild Flowers; British Butterflies and British Insects.

Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

A Soldier, A Dog and A Boy

Libby Hathorn, Phil Lesnie
Contributors:
Libby Hathorn, Phil Lesnie
Hodder Children's Books

Purplicious

Victoria Kann, Elizabeth Kann
Contributors:
Victoria Kann, Elizabeth Kann

Pink, pink, pink. More than anything, Pinkalicious loves pink. But when the girls at school say that pink is for babies, and that black is the in colour now, Pinkalicious is upset. But a new friend in art class shows her that purple is also a pretty colour... This sparkling picture book explores the idea of fitting in with the crowd, while trying to stay true to yourself.The number one New York Times bestselling series by Victoria and Elizabeth Kann has gained such popularity that Pinkalicious has been made into a much loved musical in America, which is now touring again.'A pink lover's dream come true.' - School Library JournalFor more Pinkalicious fun visit http://thinkpinkalicious.com/

Hodder Children's Books

Pinkalicious

Victoria Kann, Elizabeth Kann
Contributors:
Victoria Kann, Elizabeth Kann

Pink, pink, pink. More than anything, Pinkalicious loves pink, especially pink cupcakes. Her parents warn her not to eat too many of them, but when Pinkalicious does... she turns pink! What to do?This sparkling picture book, filled with such favorites as pink bubble gum, pink peonies, pink cotton candy, and pink fairy princess dresses, celebrates all things pink while showing that being yourself is best of all.The number one New York Times bestselling series by Victoria and Elizabeth Kann has gained such popularity that Pinkalicious has been made into a much loved musical in America, which is now touring again.'A pink lover's dream come true.' - School Library JournalFor more Pinkalicious fun visit http://thinkpinkalicious.com/

Orion Children's Books

Ruin and Rising

Leigh Bardugo
Authors:
Leigh Bardugo

*The Grishaverse will be coming to Netflix soon with Shadow and Bone, an original series!*Enter the Grishaverse with book three of the Shadow and Bone Trilogy by number one New York Times-bestselling author Leigh Bardugo. Perfect for fans of Laini Taylor and Sarah J. Maas.Now with a stunning new cover and exclusive bonus material: The Demon in the Wood (a Darkling prequel story) and a Q&A with Leigh Bardugo. Soldier. Summoner. Saint.The nation's fate rests with a broken Sun Summoner, a disgraced tracker, and the shattered remnants of a once-great magical army.The Darkling rules from his shadow throne while a weakened Alina Starkov recovers from their battle under the dubious protection of the zealots who worship her as a Saint. Now her hopes lie with the magic of a long-vanished ancient creature and the chance that an outlaw prince still survives.As her allies and enemies race toward war, only Alina stands between her country and a rising tide of darkness that could destroy the world. To win this fight, she must seize a legend's power - but claiming the firebird may be her ruin. Read all the books in the Grishaverse! The Shadow and Bone Trilogy (previously published as The Grisha Trilogy) Shadow and Bone Siege and Storm Ruin and Rising The Six of Crows Duology Six of Crows Crooked Kingdom The Language of Thorns: Midnight Tales and Dangerous Magic

Orion Children's Books

Sun Catcher

Sheila Rance
Authors:
Sheila Rance
Hodder Children's Books

Stoneheart

Charlie Fletcher
Authors:
Charlie Fletcher

Elizabeth Kann

Author Elizabeth Kann grew up in Brooklyn, New York. She is a doctor who has yet to see an actual case of Pinkititis. Her writing has appeared in a variety of newspapers and print publications. She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and two children.

Wikipedia

Shaun Tan

Shaun Tan (born 1974) is an Australian illustrator and author of children's books and speculative fiction cover artist. He won an Academy Award for the The Lost Thing, a 2011 animated film adaptation of a 2000 picture book he wrote and illustrated. Beside The Lost Thing, The Red Tree and The Arrival are chapterbooks he has written and illustrated. Tan was born in Fremantle, Western Australia in 1974 and, after freelancing for some years from a studio at Mount Lawley, relocated to Melbourne, Victoria in 2007.[1] In 2006, his wordless graphic novelThe Arrival won the "Book of the Year" prize as part of the New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards.[2] The same book won the Children's Book Council of Australia "Picture Book of the Year" award in 2007.[3] and the Western Australian Premier's Book Awards Premier's Prize in 2006.[4] Tan was the University of Melbourne's Department of Language Literacy and Arts Education Illustrator In Residence for two weeks through an annual Fellowship offered by the May Gibbs Children’s Literature Trust.[5] In 2010, Shaun Tan was the Artist Guest of Honour at the 68th World Science Fiction Convention held in Melbourne, Australia. For his career contribution to "children's and young adult literature in the broadest sense" Tan won the 2011 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award from the Swedish Arts Council, the biggest prize in children's literature.[6] As a boy, Tan spent time illustrating poems and stories and drawing dinosaurs, robots and spaceships. At school he was known as a talented artist.[1] At the age of eleven, he became a fan of The Twilight Zone television series as well as books that bore similar themes. Tan cites Ray Bradbury as a favorite at this time. These stories led to Tan writing his own short stories. Of his effort at writing as a youth, Tan tells, "I have a small pile of rejection letters as testament to this ambition!"[7] Eventually he gained success with his illustrations. At the age of sixteen, Tan's first illustration appeared in the Australian magazine Aurealis in 1990.[7] Tan almost studied to become a geneticist, and enjoyed chemistry, physics, history and English when in high school as well as art and claimed that he did not really know what he wanted to do, even at university.[7] University studies were taking him along an academic route until he "decided to stop studying and try working as an artist."[8] Illustration was something Tan enjoyed. The decision to choose it as a career simply allowed him to make a living from drawing and painting.[8] Drawing was something he had never stopped doing, claiming "...it was one thing I could do better than anyone else when I was in school."[7] Tan claims that he had little formal training in the field of book illustration.[1] Tan attended Balcatta Senior High School in the northern suburbs of Perth where he was enrolled in a special art program for gifted and talented students. "The main advantage," cites Tan, "was that students came to be taught by a wide range of practising artists, not just art teachers."[8] He completed the program in 1991 and he "credits the...Program [for] providing him the fundamental skills of art making." [9] Tan continued his education at the University of Western Australia where he studied Fine Arts, English Literature and History. While this was of interest to him, there was little studio practice involved.[8] In 1995, he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts.[10] Of his actual works he has said: ‘‘I don’t think I’ve ever painted an image as a reproduction of what I’m seeing, even when I’m working in front of it. I’m always trying to create some kind of parallel equivalent."[7] Originally, Tan worked in black and white because the final reproductions would be printed that way and this preference extended to The Stray Cat. Some black and white mediums he used included pens, inks, acrylics, charcoal, scraperboard, photocopies and linocuts.[7] Tan's current colour works still begin as monochromatic. He uses a graphite pencil to make sketches on ordinary copy paper. The sketches are then reproduced numerous times with different versions varying with parts added or removed. Sometimes scissors are used for this purpose. The cut and paste collage idea in these early stages often extend to the finished production with many of his illustrations using such materials as "glass, metal, cuttings from other books and dead insects."[7] Tan describes himself as a slow worker who revises his work many times along the way. He is interested in loss and alienation, and believes that children in particular react well to issues of natural justice. He feels he is "like a translator" of ideas, and is happy and flattered to see his work adapted and interpreted in film and music (such as by the Australian Chamber Orchestra).[11] Tan draws from a large source of inspiration and cites many influences on his work. His comment on the subject is: "I’m pretty omnivorous when it comes to influences, and I like to admit this openly."[7] Some influences are very direct. The Lost Thing is a strong example where Tan makes visual references to famous artworks. Many of his influences are a lot more subtle visually, some of the influences are ideological. Below are some influences he has named in various interviews: The Shaun Tan Award for Young Artists is sponsored by the City of Subiaco and open to all Perth school children between 5 and 17 years. The award is aimed at encouraging creativity in two-dimensional works. It is held annually with award winners announced in May and finalists' works exhibited at the Subiaco Library (crn Rokeby and Bagot Road, Subiaco) throughout June.[13] Mural in the Children's Section of the Subiaco Public Library (Perth, Western Australia). Size: 20 square metres[1]

Izzi Howell

Izzi Howell is the author and editor of over fifty children's books. She lives in East Sussex and enjoys learning languages, cooking and travelling around Europe.

Author Spotlight with Graham Marks

Julian Sedgwick

Julian Sedgwick is a some time screen writer and therapist, and a highly accomplished, largely self-taught artist; you could call him a Renaissance Man, if he wasn’t so down-to-earth. He is also award-winning children’s novelist Marcus Sedgwick’s slightly older brother. Here he talks to Graham Marks about sibling rivalry, his obsessions (China, Japan and the Flying Wallendas), and his debut novel…

Wikipedia

Enid Blyton

Enid Mary Blyton (11 August 1897 – 28 November 1968) was a Britishchildren's writer also known as Mary Pollock. She is noted for numerous series of books based on recurring characters and designed for different age groups. Her books have enjoyed huge success in many parts of the world, and have sold over 600 million copies.[1] One of Blyton's most widely known characters is Noddy, intended for early years readers. However, her main work is the genre of young readers' novels in which children have their own adventures with minimal adult help. Series of this type include the Famous Five (21 novels, 1942–1963, based on four children and their dog), the Five Find-Outers and Dog, (15 novels, 1943–1961, where five children regularly outwit the local police) as well as The Secret Seven (15 novels, 1949–1963, a society of seven children who solve various mysteries). Her work involves children's adventure stories, and fantasy, sometimes involving magic. Her books were and still are enormously popular throughout the Commonwealth and across most of the globe. Her work has been translated into nearly 90 languages. Blyton's literary output was of an estimated 800 books over roughly 40 years. Chorion Limited of London now owns and handles the intellectual properties and character brands of Blyton's Noddy and the well known series the Famous Five. Blyton was born on 11 August 1897 at 354 Lordship Lane, East Dulwich, London, England, the eldest child of Thomas Carey Blyton (1870–1920), a salesman of cutlery, and his wife, Theresa Mary Harrison Blyton (1874–1950). There were two younger brothers, Hanly (1899–1983) and Carey (1902–1976), who were born after the family had moved to the nearby suburb of Beckenham—in Oakwood Avenue. Blyton adored her father and was devastated after he left the family to live with another woman; this has often been cited as the reason behind her emotional immaturity. Blyton and her mother did not have a good relationship, and later in life, Blyton claimed to others that her mother was dead. After both her parents did die, Blyton attended neither of their funerals. From 1907 to 1915, Blyton was educated at St. Christopher's School in Beckenham, leaving as head girl. She enjoyed physical activities along with some academic work, but not maths. Blyton was a talented pianist, but gave up her musical studies when she trained as a teacher at Ipswich High School.[2] She taught for five years at Bickley, Surbiton and Chessington, writing in her spare time. Her first book, Child Whispers, a collection of poems, was published in 1922. On 28 August 1924 Blyton married Major Hugh Alexander Pollock, DSO (1888–1971), editor of the book department in the publishing firm of George Newnes, which published two of her books that year. The couple moved to Bourne End, Buckinghamshire (Peterswood in her books).[3] Eventually they moved to a house in Beaconsfield, named Green Hedges by Blyton's readers following a competition in Sunny Stories. They had two children: Gillian Mary Baverstock (15 July 1931 – 24 June 2007) and Imogen Mary Smallwood (born 27 October 1935). In the mid-1930s Blyton experienced a spiritual crisis, but she decided against converting to Roman Catholicism from the Church of England because she had felt it was "too restricting". Although she rarely attended church services, she saw that her two daughters were baptised into the Anglican faith and went to the local Sunday School. Since her death in 1968 and the publication of her daughter Imogen's autobiography, A Childhood at Green Hedges, Blyton has emerged as an emotionally immature, unstable and often malicious figure. By 1939 her marriage to Pollock was in difficulties, and she began a series of affairs. In 1941 she met Kenneth Fraser Darrell Waters, a London surgeon with whom she began a relationship. During her divorce, Blyton blackmailed Pollock into taking full blame for the failure of the marriage, knowing that exposure of her adultery would ruin her public image. She promised that if he admitted to charges of infidelity, she would allow him unlimited access to their daughters. However, after the divorce, Pollock was forbidden to contact his daughters, and Blyton ensured he was unable to find work in publishing afterwards. He turned to drinking heavily and was forced to petition for bankruptcy. Blyton and Darrell Waters married at the City of Westminster Register Office on 20 October 1943, and she subsequently changed the surname of her two daughters to Darrell Waters. Pollock remarried thereafter. Blyton's second marriage was very happy and, as far as her public image was concerned, she moved smoothly into her role as a devoted doctor's wife, living with him and her two daughters at Green Hedges. Blyton's husband died in 1967. During the following months, she became increasingly ill. Afflicted by Alzheimer's disease, Blyton was moved into a nursing home three months before her death; she died at the Greenways Nursing Home, London, on 28 November 1968, aged 71 years and was cremated at the Golders Green Crematorium where her ashes remain. Blyton's home, Green Hedges, was sold in 1971 and demolished in 1973. The area where Green Hedges once stood is now occupied by houses and a street called Blyton Close. A blue plaque commemorates Blyton at Hook Road in Chessington, where she lived from 1920-4. [4] Her daughter Imogen has been quoted as saying "The truth is Enid Blyton was arrogant, insecure, pretentious, very skilled at putting difficult or unpleasant things out of her mind, and without a trace of maternal instinct. As a child, I viewed her as a rather strict authority. As an adult I pitied her."[5] Elder daughter, Gillian, did not hold the same view toward their mother, and Imogen's biography of Blyton contains a foreword by Gillian to the effect that her memories of childhood with Enid Blyton were mainly happy ones. The Red Story Book, The Green Story Book, The Blue Story Book, Bedtime Stories are some other books by Enid Blyton. Blyton wrote hundreds of other books for young and older children: novels, story collections and some non-fiction. She also filled a large number of magazine pages, particularly the long-running Sunny Stories which were immensely popular among younger children. She used a pseudonym Mary Pollock for a few titles (middle name plus first married name). The last volumes in her most famous series were published in 1963. Many books still appeared after that, but were mainly story books made up from recycled work. Blyton also wrote numerous books on nature and Biblical themes. Her story The Land of Far-Beyond is a Christian parable along the lines of John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress, with modern children as the central characters. She also produced retellings of Old Testament and New Testament stories. Enid Blyton was a prolific author of short stories. These were first published, for the most part, in Sunny Stories, an Enid Blyton magazine, or other children's papers. She also used to explore the forests when she was a little girl and wrote of her dreams in a notebook kept by her bedside. In February 2011, the manuscript of a previously unknown Blyton novel, Mr Tumpy's Caravan, was discovered in a collection of her papers which had been auctioned in 2010[6] following the death of her elder daughter in 2007.[7] Blyton books are generally split into three types. One involves ordinary children in extraordinary situations, having adventures, solving crimes, or otherwise finding themselves in unusual circumstances. Examples include the Famous Five and Secret Seven, and the Adventure series. The second and more conventional type is the boarding school story; the plots of these have more emphasis on the day-to-day life at school. This is the world of the midnight feast, the practical joke, and the social interaction of the various types of character. Examples of this type are the Malory Towers stories, the St Clare's series, and the Naughtiest Girl books and are typical of the times — many comics of the day also contained similar types of story. The third type is the fantastical. Children are typically transported into a magical world in which they meet fairies, goblins, elves, pixies, or other fantasy creatures. Examples of this type are the Wishing-Chair books and The Faraway Tree. In many of her short stories, toys are shown to come alive when humans are not around. Enid Blyton's status as a bestselling author is in spite of disapproval of her works from various perspectives, which has led to altered reprints of the books and withdrawals or “bans” from libraries. In the 1990s, Chorion, the owners of Blyton's works, edited her books to remove passages that were deemed racist or sexist.[8] The children’s author Anne Fine presented an overview of the concerns about Blyton's work and responses to them on BBC Radio 4 in November 2008, in which she noted the “drip, drip, drip of disapproval” associated with the books.[9][10] It was frequently reported (in the 1950s and also from the 1980s onwards) that various children's libraries removed some of Blyton's works from the shelves. The history of such "Blyton bans" is confused. Some librarians certainly at times felt that Blyton's restricted use of language, a conscious product of her teaching background, militated against appreciation of more literary qualities. There was some precedent in the treatment of L. Frank Baum's Oz books (and the many sequels by others) by librarians in the United States in the 1930s. There were numerous critical comments about Blyton: claiming that her vocabulary was too limited, that she presented too rosy a view of the world, even suggestions that little Noddy's relationship with Big Ears was "suspect", that he was a poor role model for boys because he sometimes wept when frustrated and the laws were politically incorrect. A careful account of anti-Blyton attacks is given in Chapter 4 of Robert Druce's This Day Our Daily Fictions. The British Journal of Education in 1955 carried a piece by Janice Dohn, an American children's librarian, considering Blyton's writing together with authors of formula fiction, and making negative comments about Blyton's devices and tone. A 1958 article in Encounter by Colin Welch, directed against the Noddy character, was reprinted in a New Zealand librarians' periodical. This gave rise to the first rumour of a New Zealand "library ban" on Blyton's books, a recurrent press canard. Policy on buying and stocking Blyton's books by British public libraries drew attention in newspaper reports from the early 1960s to the end of the 1970s, as local decisions were made by a London borough, Birmingham, Nottingham and other central libraries. There is no evidence that her books' popularity ever suffered: her response to criticism is said to be that she was not interested in the views of critics aged over 12.[11] Blyton was defended by populist journalists, and others. In November 2009 it was revealed in the British press that the BBC had a longstanding ban on dramatising Blyton's books on the radio from the 1930s to the 1950s. Letters and memos from the BBC Archive show that producers and executives at the time described Blyton as a "tenacious second-rater" who wrote "stilted and longwinded" books which were not suitable to be broadcast. In 1936 Blyton wrote to the BBC suggesting herself as a broadcaster, pointing out that she had "written probably more books than any other writer." She was turned down. In 1938, Blyton's husband, Hugh Pollock, wrote to Sir John Reith, the then Director General of the BBC, pointing out that his wife was receiving letters from children from all parts of the British Empire, and that she should be allowed to speak to them via the radio. Jean E. Sutcliffe, of the BBC's schools broadcast department wrote, "Her stories...haven't much literary value. There is rather a lot of the Pink-winky-Doodle-doodle Dum-dumm type of name (and lots of pixies) in the original tales."[12][13] Enid Blyton tried to get her work on the radio again in 1940, but her manuscript was once more turned down, the BBC employee who reviewed it writing, "This is really not good enough. Very little happens and the dialogue is so stilted and long-winded...It really is odd to think that this woman is a bestseller." Eventually, in 1954, Blyton's works appeared on air for the first time. Jean Sutcliffe wrote of Blyton's ability to churn out "mediocre material", and that "Her capacity to do so, amounts to genius...anyone else would have died of boredom long ago." Michael Rosen, the former Children's Laureate, said of the BBC's ban on Blyton, "...the quality of the writing itself was poor...it was felt that there was a lot of snobbery and racism in the writing...There is all sorts of stuff about oiks and lower orders."[12] The books are very much of their time, particularly the titles published in the 1950s. They present the UK's class system — that is to say, "rough" versus "decent".[14] Many of Blyton's children's books similarly reflected negative stereotypes regarding gender, race, and class. One incidence of altering this type of dated material might be the altering of a statement like "black as a nigger with soot" appearing in Five Go off to Camp.[15][16] At the time, "Negro" was the standard formal term and "nigger" a relatively common colloquialism. This is one of the most obvious targets for alteration in modern reprints, along with the replacement of golliwogs with teddy bears or goblins. Some of this responses by publishers to contemporary attitudes on racial stereotypes has itself drawn criticism from some who view it as tampering with an important piece of the history of children's literature. The Druce book brings up the case of The Little Black Doll (who wanted to be pink), which was turned on its head in a reprint. Also removed in deference to modern ethical attitudes are many casual references to slaves and to corporal punishment - The Faraway Tree's Dame Slap was changed to Dame Snap and several references to characters in the Malory Towers and St. Clare's series being spanked were changed to them being "scolded". Blyton's attitudes came under criticism during her working lifetime; a publisher rejected a story of hers in 1960, taking a negative literary view of it but also saying that "There is a faint but unattractive touch of old-fashioned xenophobia in the author's attitude to the thieves; they are 'foreign'...and this seems to be regarded as sufficient to explain their criminality."[17] Similarly, some have suggested the depictions of boys and girls in her books were sexist. For example, a 2005 Guardian article[18] suggested that the Famous Five depicts a power struggle between Julian, Dick and George (Georgina), with the female characters either acting like boys or being heavily put-upon. Although the gender issues are more subjective than with some of the racial issues, it has been suggested that a new edition of the book will "address" these issues through alterations, which has led to the expression of nostalgia for the books and their lack of political correctness.[19] In the Secret Seven books, the girls are deliberately excluded from tasks such as investigating the villains' hideouts — in Go Ahead, Secret Seven, it is directly stated "'Certainly not,' said Peter, sounding very grown-up all of a sudden. 'This is a man's job, exploring that coal-hole'".[20] In "The Adventurous 4, the two girls are often sent to do the cooking and washing up for the two boys. In the Famous Five this is less often the case, except Anne doing it voluntarily most of the times, but in Five on a Hike Together, Julian gives similar orders to George: "You may look like a boy and behave like a boy, but you're a girl all the same. And like it or not, girls have got to be taken care of."[21]. Similarly, in "Five have a wonderful time", Anne says "I don't expect boys to tidy up and cook and do things like that but George ought to because she's a girl". To this, George replies "If only I'd been born a boy". This is perhaps the most prominent example of gender stereotyping in her books. It shows that the stereotypes were not just enforced by boys but accepted by girls too. The story of Blyton's life was turned into a BBC film in 2009 with Helena Bonham Carter in the title role. Filming began in March 2009 and first aired in the United Kingdom on BBC Four on 16 November 2009, followed by a documentary on Enid Blyton. Matthew Macfadyen and Denis Lawson played Blyton's first husband, Hugh Pollock, and Blyton's second husband, Kenneth Darrell Waters, respectively.[22]

Author Spotlight with Graham Marks

Charlie Fletcher

Charlie Fletcher has written numerous screenplays, and is the author of the critically acclaimed Stoneheart trilogy. Here he talks to Graham Marks about the story so far, the differences between writing for screen and page, America, literary mash-ups, and of course his latest novel, Far Rockaway.

Author Spotlight with Graham Marks

Kate O'Hearn

Kate O’Hearn is a larger-than-life author who was born in Toronto, Canada, but has since travelled the world – as well as working in the fashion and film industries - before making her home in England. Here she talks to Graham Marks about childhood adventures, both good and bad, and how she eventually became a writer of acclaimed fantasy novels. Prepare yourself…

Wikipedia

Michael Rosen

Michael Wayne Rosen (born 7 May 1946)[1] is a broadcaster, children's novelist and poet and the author of 140 books. He was appointed as the fifth Children's Laureate in June 2007, succeeding Jacqueline Wilson, and held this honour until 2009. Michael Rosen was born in Harrow, London. The family background is Jewish, "from the Jewish East End tradition" as Rosen puts it.[2] Rosen's father Harold (1919–2008) was born in Brockton, Massachusetts, in the United States to Communist parents and settled in the East End of London at the age of two, when his mother returned to the country of her birth.[3] While a member of the Young Communist League he met Connie Isakofsky, his future wife and Michael Rosen's mother, in 1935. Harold was a secondary school teacher before becoming a professor of English at the Institute of Education, London,[4] and Connie a primary school teacher before becoming a training college lecturer; she also broadcast for the BBC. Producing a programme featuring poetry, she persuaded her son to write for it, and used some of the material he submitted.[5] Their ancestors came from Poland, Russia and Romania.[2] Michael Rosen was brought up in Pinner, Middlesex, and went to various state schools in Pinner, Harrow, and then Watford Grammar School for Boys,[2] and, having discovered the range of Jonathan Miller, thought: "Wouldn't it be wonderful to know all about science, and know all about art, and be funny and urbane and all that."[6] Subsequently, in his own words: After graduating from Wadham College, Oxford, in 1969, Rosen became a graduate trainee at the BBC. Among the work that he did while there in the 1970s was presenting a series on BBC Schools television called WALRUS (Write And Learn, Read, Understand, Speak). He was also scriptwriter on the children's reading series Sam on Boffs' Island. But Rosen found working for the corporation frustrating: "Their view of 'educational' was narrow. The machine had decided this was the direction to take. Your own creativity was down the spout."[7] Despite previously having made no secret of his radical politics he was asked to go freelance in 1972, though in practice he was sacked despite several departments of the BBC wishing to employ him. In common with the China expert and journalist Isabel Hilton among several others at this time, Rosen had failed the vetting procedures which were then in operation. This long-standing practice was only revealed in 1985.[8] In 1974 Mind Your Own Business, his first book of poetry for children, was published. In due course, Rosen established himself with his collections of humorous verse for children, including Wouldn't You Like to Know, You Tell Me and Quick Let's Get Out of Here. Educationalist Morag Styles has described Rosen as "one of the most significant figures in contemporary children's poetry". He was, says Styles, one of the first poets "to draw closely on his own childhood experiences ... and to 'tell it as it was' in the ordinary language children actually use".[7] Rosen played a key role in opening up children's access to poetry: both through his own writing and with important anthologies such as Culture Shock. He was one of the first poets to make visits to schools throughout the UK and further afield in Australia, Canada and Singapore.[7] His tours continue to enthuse and engage school children about poetry in the present.[9] In 1993, he gained an M.A. in Children's Literature from the University of Reading; he also holds a Ph.D. from the University of North London.[10] He is well established as a broadcaster, presenting a range of documentary features on British radio. He is the presenter of BBC Radio 4's regular magazine programme Word of Mouth which looks at the English language and the way it is used.[11] The English Association has given Michael Rosen's Sad Book an Exceptional Award for the Best Children's Illustrated Books of 2004, in the 4–11 age range. The book was written by Michael Rosen and illustrated by Quentin Blake. It deals in part with bereavement, and followed the publication of Carrying the Elephant: A Memoir of Love and Loss which was published in November 2002 after the death of his son Eddie, who features as a child in much of his earlier poetry. In 2004, Rosen published This Is Not My Nose: A Memoir of Illness and Recovery, an account of his ten years with undiagnosed hypothyroidism; a course of drugs in 1981 alleviated the condition.[7] Rosen has also been involved in campaigning around issues of education and for the Palestinian cause. He has written columns for the newspaper of the Socialist Workers Party (Socialist Worker)[12] and spoken at their conferences.[13] He has also stood for election in June 2004 in London as a Respect Coalition candidate.[5] He is also a supporter of the Republic campaign.[14] Rosen was the subject of the BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs programme on 6 August 2006.[15] He is currently Visiting Professor of Children's Literature at Birkbeck, University of London, where he teaches Children's Literature and has devised an MA in Children's Literature, which commenced in October 2010.[16] In August 2010 Rosen contributed to an eBook collection of political poems entitled Emergency Verse - Poetry in Defence of the Welfare State edited by Alan Morrison[17] In 2011, he collaborated with his wife, Emma-Louise Williams to produce the film 'Under the Cranes'; he provided the original screenplay (a 'play for voices' called 'Hackney Streets') which Williams took as a basis with which to direct the film. It premiered at the Rio Cinema, Dalston, London on April 30, 2011 as part of the East End Film Festival[18] Rosen was appointed as the fifth Children's Laureate in June 2007, succeeding Jacqueline Wilson,[19] and held this honour till 9 June 2009, being succeeded by Anthony Browne.[20] Rosen signed off from the Laureateship with an article in The Guardian,[21] in which he said, poignantly: "Sometimes when I sit with children when they have the space to talk and write about ... things, I have the feeling that I am privileged to be the kind of person who is asked to be part of it". In summer 2007, Rosen was awarded an Honorary D.Litt at the University of Exeter.[22] On 19 January 2008, Rosen was presented with an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from the Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust and the University of East London at a ceremony held at the Institute of Education.[23] On 5 November 2008, he was presented with an Honorary Masters degree at the University of Worcester.[24] On 18 November 2008, he was presented with the Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (Knight of the Order of Arts and Literature) by the Government of France at the French Ambassador's residence in London.[25] On 2 April 2010 he was given the Fred and Anne Jarvis Award by the National Union of Teachers for "campaigning for education".[26] On 22 July 2010, Michael Rosen was awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Education (DEd) by Nottingham Trent University.[27] On April 5, 2011, he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate at the Institute of Education, University of London.[28] On 20 July 2011, Michael Rosen was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Letters by the University of the West of England.[29] Rosen has been married three times, and is the father of five children and two stepchildren. With his first partner, Susannah, he had two sons: Joe (born 1976) and Eddie (born 1980, died 1999). His second partner, whom he does not name, had two daughters from her previous relationship: Naomi (born 1978) and Laura (born 1983).[30] He had one son with her: Isaac (born 1987). Rosen currently lives in Dalston, Hackney, London with his wife Emma-Louise Williams and their two children, Elsie (born 2001) and Emile (born 2004).[31][32]

Wikipedia

Laurie Halse Anderson

Laurie Halse Anderson was born on October 23, 1961 in Potsdam, New York.[1] Anderson is a current American author, who writes for children and young adults. First recognized for her novel Speak, published in 1999, Anderson gained recognition for her artistic dealings with tough topics embedded with honesty. Anderson’s ability to creatively address often avoided issues allows her to be a safe outlet for young readers. The tough themes of her novels including rape, family dysfunctions, body issues and disorders, and high academic pressures often create controversial discussions surrounding her novels. Anderson takes her writing very seriously, though often wishing she could write about lighter topics. She believes in speaking directly to teenagers addressing “their real concerns, fears, and frustrations". Anderson reads every letter, every e-mail message, every post sent to her by teens from around the world and responds by writing about what these young people express as most important to them — even if they want take her to places dark and painful.”[2] As a student growing up in New York, near the border of Canada, under her parents, Reverend Frank and Joyce Halse, with younger sister, Lisa,[2] Laurie Halse Anderson showed early interest in writing, specifically during the second grade. Laurie loved reading, especially science fiction and fantasy as a teenager, yet, she never envisioned herself becoming a writer. Despite struggling with math, she thought she would eventually pursue the occupation of a doctor.[3] During Anderson’s senior year, at the age of sixteen, she moved out of her parent’s house and lived as an exchange student for thirteen months on a pig farm in Denmark. After her experience in Denmark, Anderson moved back home to begin working at a clothing store, making minimum wage. This pushed Laurie to decide to attend college.[3] While attending Onondaga Community College, Laurie worked on dairy farm, milking cows. After graduating, two years later, with her associates, she transferred to Georgetown University in 1981 and graduated in 1984 with her Bachelor’s degree in Languages and Linguistics.[3] Laurie Halse Anderson married her first husband, Greg Anderson, and in 1985, they had their first child, Stephanie Holcomb. Two years later, they had their second child, Meredith Lauren. Her marriage to Greg did not last, but they remain on good terms with Greg still editing her manuscripts today.[2] Years later, with Laurie Anderson’s move back to Mexico, New York, she rekindled feelings with her childhood sweetheart, Scot Larrabee. Anderson eventually married, and is still married to, Larrabee. Together, they blended their families of Anderson’s two daughters and Larrabee’s two children, Jessica and Christian. Anderson states that the blended family is the “greatest thing that has ever happened to her.”[2] Other than writing and spending time with her family, Laurie loves to run for therapeutic release. She finds that running assists in her career and personal life stating, "My writing goes better, I sleep better, I eat better, and I'm a nicer person. My husband is very supportive of this endeavor."[2] Anderson has competed in several local races with Scot now that her children are grown.[2] Anderson’s commitment to writing powerful, controversial and intensely serious content within her novel have led Anderson on a journey, acting as a voice for many young readers. “I get amazing letters from readers who tell me that one of my books helped them get through a tough time, and I know this is what I am meant to do.”[2] Anderson uses her own experience which often intertwines itself into the life of her characters. Because of this blurred line, Anderson often feels the empathy, emotion, and feelings of what her characters experience. With the intensity of encompassing herself in often dark places, Anderson states, “I survive the process of emotional immersion by remembering the kids who write to me, reminding myself how much more difficult it is for the teen readers who are struggling with these issues in real life. At least I have the option of walking away from a story. They do not.”[2] Laurie Halse Anderson began her career as a freelance journalist and worked at The Philadelphia Inquirer in the early years of her career.[4] During this time, Anderson also began to write children’s and young adult novels. Despite receiving stacks of rejection letters, in 1996 Anderson released her first children’s novel Ndito Runs,[5] based on Kenyan Olympic marathon runners who ran to and from school each day.[3] Later that same year, Anderson also had her story Turkey Pox published. This story was inspired by her daughter Meredith who on Thanksgiving broke out with chicken pox. Two years later in 1998, No Time For Mother’s Day, featuring the same characters as Turkey Pox was published.[3] During her early career, Anderson also wrote a few pieces of non-fiction. The first of her non-fiction projects was a book featuring Saudi Arabia written for children. Anderson received the unique experience of working directly with the Saudi Arabian embassy in Washington. Within this time, Anderson gained the unique perspective of learning significantly about another culture and faith. Anderson also co-authored a book about parenting shy children with Dr. Ward Swallow, bringing the genuine experiences she received with her own daughter Stephanie.[3] In 1999, Farrar, Straus and Giroux published what is arguably Anderson's most famous novel to date, Speak. It won numerous awards and was a New York Times best seller.[6]Speak was adapted into film in 2004, starring Kristen Stewart as Melinda Sordino.[7] Anderson's novel, Speak, became a finalist for the prestigious National Book Award. The 1999 novel won Anderson an array of honors for its searing portrayal of a thirteen-year-old girl who becomes mute after a sexual assault. The paperback version was published in 2001 by Puffin Books, an imprint of Penguin Publishing. Speak has been translated into 16 languages. In 2002 after the publication of Fever, 1793, Catalyst was published by Penguin under the Viking imprint.[8]Catalyst takes place in the same high school as Speak and features cameo appearances by some of its characters. Catalyst became a Barnes & Noble Best Teen Book of 2002, an American Library Association Best Book for Young Adults, and was nominated for many state awards.[9] In 2005, Anderson published Prom, which appeared on The New York Times best seller list during early 2005.[6]Prom received three starred reviews, was nominated for several state awards, and received national recognition from the American Library Association and the International Reading Association.[10] Anderson's fourth YA novel, Twisted, was released in the spring of 2007 by Viking. It has awards, such as the ALA Best Book for Young Adults 2008, ALA Quick Pick for Young Adults 2008, International Reading Association Top Ten of 2007, and New York Public Library Best Books for the Teen Age, and became a The New York Times best seller.[11] Anderson's most recent young adult novel, Wintergirls, was released in March 2009. The novel tells the story of two girls, one of whom is dead at the beginning, suffering from (bulimia and anorexia). Wintergirls received five-star reviews and many nominations for state awards, was named an ALA Quick Pick for Young Adults, was a Junior Library Guild Selection,[12] and debuted on The New York Times Best Seller list.[13]Wintergirls has been published in over 15 different countries. The following year, Anderson's Fever, 1793, a historical fiction novel set in Philadelphia during the Yellow Fever epidemic, was published by Simon and Schuster. Fever, 1793 received two starred reviews, many state and national awards, and was a Publishers Weekly Bestseller.[14] In May 2004, the Gifford Family Theatre, in Syracuse, New York, premiered a stage play adapted from the novel.[15] Anderson's historical fiction picture book, Thank You, Sarah! The Woman Who Saved Thanksgiving was also published in 2002. Thank You, Sarah received two starred reviews, several state award nominations, and was named in the ALA Amelia Bloomer List and the Junior Library Guild Selection.[16] In 2008, Anderson published another historical fiction novel, entitled Chains, a narrative about a teenage Revolutionary War-era slave. The novel, the first in a trilogy dubbed Seeds of America, was awarded the Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction.[17] The second novel in the Seeds of America trilogy, Forge, was released in October, 2010, by Simon and Schuster. In the short time since its release, Forge has received three-starred reviews and has become a Junior Library Guild Selection, a Kirkus Best Book for Teens: Historical Novels 2010, The Horn Book Fanfare List Best Book of 2010 and a YALSA 2011 Best Books for Young Adults.[18] In a culture where Anderson believes teenagers and young adults are poorly depicted she states that, “I have a lot of material to work with.”[2] Anderson’s lack of fear in tackling tough issues specifically surrounding young adults is what provides the credibility in many young adults confiding their story in her. When choosing to write a historical novel, Anderson states that she must be “overwhelmingly curious about a time period or situation, or she will not touch it. I need to be on fire about something,” states Anderson, “in order to commit to research and the challenge of writing.”[2] Anderson finds inspiration in short conversations overheard while running errands, ideas through what she is reading, and the events she witnesses surrounding her life. With a plethora of ideas, Anderson must limit herself to the ideas which she feels can be nurtured and are worth investing time into. Surprisingly, Anderson looks more to the community and the outside world for inspiration in bringing her character, themes, and motifs to life. After looking externally, Anderson then internally crafts the rest of the pieces to her novel. Laurie uses her own lens of life experience and feelings to depict the emotions her characters experience. “As a person, as a Mother, as a girlfriend, she gathers her life experiences that transfer to her storytelling in nonliteral, more emotional ways. As she explains, “I know what it feels like to fall in love, fall out of love, be starry- eyed, have a jealous fit. Whatever the emotional tenor of the scene requires, I have been there. So even if I make up every single detail of the scene, the emotions probably echo something I have lived through.”[2] Laurie Halse Anderson has been nominated and won multiple honorary awards over her literary work. Among her earlier work Anderson was honored for her children’s picture books which received numerous awards and were placed on the recommended reading lists. For the masterpiece Speak, Anderson won the Printz Honor Book Award, a National Book Award nomination, Golden Kite award, the Edgar Allan Poe Award, and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. Along with Speak her awards have also encompassed the book Fever 1793, which she won the American Library Association Best Book for Young Adults selection and the Junior Library Guild selection. In 2008, Chains was selected for the National Book Award Finalist and in 2009 was awarded for its Historical Fiction the Scott O’Dell Award.[19]

Wikipedia

Anthony Horowitz

Anthony Horowitz (born 5 April 1955) is an English novelist and screenwriter. He has written many children's novels, including The Power of Five, Alex Rider and The Diamond Brothers series and has written over fifty books. He has also written extensively for television, adapting many of Agatha Christie'sHercule Poirot novels for the ITV series. He is the creator and writer of the ITV series Foyle's War, Midsomer Murders and Collision. Anthony Horowitz was born in 1955 in Middlesex, into a wealthy Jewish family, and in his early years lived an upper-class lifestyle.[2][3][4] As an overweight and unhappy child, Horowitz enjoyed reading books from his father's library. At the age of eight, Horowitz was sent to the boarding school Orley Farm in Harrow, Middlesex. There, he entertained his peers by telling them the stories he had read.[2] Horowitz described his time in the school as "a brutal experience", recalling that he was often beaten by the headmaster.[4] Horowitz's father acted as a "fixer" for prime minister Harold Wilson. Facing bankruptcy, he moved his assets into Swiss numbered bank accounts. He died from cancer when his son Anthony was 22, and the family was never able to track down the missing money despite years of trying.[4] Horowitz adored his mother, who introduced him to Frankenstein and Dracula. She also gave him a human skull for his 13th birthday. Horowitz said in an interview that it reminds him to get to the end of each story since he will soon look like the skull. From the age of eight, Horowitz knew he wanted to be a writer, realising "the only time when I'm totally happy is when I'm writing".[2] He graduated from the University of York with a BA in English literature in 1977.[5] In at least one interview, Horowitz claims to believe that H. P. Lovecraft based his fictional Necronomicon on a real text, and to have read some of that text.[6] Horowitz now lives in Central London with his wife Jill Green, whom he married in Hong Kong on 15 April 1988. Green produces Foyle's War, the series Horowitz writes for ITV. They have two sons, Nicholas Mark Horowitz (born 1989) and Cassian James Horowitz (born 1991). He credits his family with much of his success in writing, as he says they help him with ideas and research. Horowitz is a patron of child protection charity Kidscape.[7] Anthony Horowitz's first book, The Sinister Secret of Frederick K Bower, was a humorous adventure for children, published in 1979[8] and later reissued as Enter Frederick K Bower. In 1981 his second novel, Misha, the Magician and the Mysterious Amulet was published and he moved to Paris to write his third book.[9] In 1983 the first of the Pentagram series, The Devil's Door-Bell, was released. This story saw Martin Hopkins battling an ancient evil that threatened the whole world. Only three of four remaining stories in the series were ever written: The Night of the Scorpion (1984), The Silver Citadel (1986) and Day of the Dragon (1986). In 1985 he released Myths and Legends, a collection of retold tales from around the world. In between writing these novels, Horowitz turned his attention to legendary characters, working with Richard Carpenter on the Robin of Sherwood television series, writing five episodes of the third season. He also novelized three of Carpenter's episodes as a children's book under the title Robin Sherwood: The Hooded Man (1986). In addition, he created Crossbow (1987), a half-hour action adventure series loosely based on William Tell. In 1988, Groosham Grange was published. This book went on to win the 1989 Lancashire Children's Book of the Year Award.[10] It was partially based on the years Horowitz spent at boarding school. Its central character is a thirteen-year-old "witch", David Eliot, gifted as the seventh son of a seventh son. Like Horowitz's, Eliot's childhood is unhappy. The Groosham Grange books are aimed at a slightly younger audience than Horowitz's previous books. This era in Horowitz's career also saw Adventurer (1987) and Starting Out (1990) published. However, the most major release of Horowitz's early career was The Falcon's Malteser (1986). This book was the first in the successful Diamond Brothers series, and was filmed for television in 1989 as Just Ask for Diamond, with an all star cast that included Bill Paterson, Jimmy Nail, Roy Kinnear, Susannah York, Michael Robbins and Patricia Hodge, and featured Colin Dale and Dursley McLinden as Nick and Tim Diamond. It was followed in 1987 with Public Enemy Number Two, and by South by South East in 1991 followed by The French Confection, I Know What You Did Last Wednesday, The Blurred Man and most recently The Greek Who Stole Christmas. Horowitz wrote many stand-alone novels in the 1990s. 1994's Granny, a comedy thriller about an evil grandmother, was Horowitz's first book in three years, and it was the first of three books for an audience similar to that of Groosham Grange. The second of these was The Switch, a body swap story, first published in 1996. The third was 1997's The Devil and His Boy, which is set in the Elizabethan era and explores the rumour of Elizabeth I's secret son. In 1999, The Unholy Grail was published as a sequel to Groosham Grange. The Unholy Grail was renamed as Return to Groosham Grange in 2003, possibly to help readers understand the connection between the books. Horowitz Horror (1999) and More Horowitz Horror (2000) saw Horowitz exploring a darker side of his writing. Each book contains several short horror stories. Many of these stories were repackaged in twos or threes as the Pocket Horowitz series. Horowitz began his most famous and successful series in the new millennium with the Alex Rider novels. These books are about a 14-year-old boy becoming a spy, a member of the British Secret Service branch MI6. Currently, there are nine Alex Rider books: Stormbreaker (2000), Point Blanc (2001), Skeleton Key (2002), Eagle Strike (2003), Scorpia (2004) Ark Angel (2005), Snakehead (2007), Crocodile Tears (2009) and Scorpia Rising (2011). The seventh Alex Rider novel, Snakehead, was released on 31 October 2007,[11] and the eighth, Crocodile Tears, was released in the UK on 12 November 2009. The final Alex Rider book, Scorpia Rising, was released on 31 March 2011. Horowitz stated that Scorpia Rising was the last book in the Alex Rider series. He will however, write another novel about the life of Yassen Gregorovich entitled Yassen, which he will start writing in 2012. It will not be a part of the Alex Rider series.[12] In 2003, Horowitz also wrote three novels featuring the Diamond Brothers: The Blurred Man, The French Confection and I Know What You Did Last Wednesday, which were republished together as Three of Diamonds in 2004. The author information page in early editions of Scorpia and the introduction to Three of Diamonds claimed that Horowitz had travelled to Australia to research a new Diamond Brothers book, entitled Radius of the Lost Shark. However, this book has not been mentioned since, so it is doubtful it is still planned. A new Diamond Brothers "short" book entitled The Greek who Stole Christmas was later released. It is hinted at the end of The Greek who Stole Christmas that Radius of the Lost Shark may turn out to be the eighth book in the series.[13] In 2004, Horowitz branched out to an adult audience with The Killing Joke, a comedy about a man who tries to track a joke to its source with disastrous consequences. Horowitz's second adult novel, The Magpie Murders, was due out on 18 October 2006. However, that date passed with no further news on the book; all that is known about it is that it will be about "a whodunit writer who is murdered while he's writing his latest whodunit" and "it has an ending which I hope will come as a very nasty surprise".[14] As the initial release date was not met, it is not currently known if or when The Magpie Murders will be released. In August 2005, Horowitz released a book called Raven's Gate which began another series entitled The Power of Five (The Gatekeepers in the United States). He describes it as "Alex Rider with witches and devils".[15] The second book in the series, Evil Star, was released in April 2006. The third in the series is called Nightrise, and was released on 2 April 2007. The fourth book Necropolis was released in October 2008. The Power of Five is a rewritten, modern version of the Pentagram series from the 1980s.[citation needed] Although Pentagram required five books for story development, Horowitz completed only four: The Devil's Door-bell (Raven's Gate), The Night of the Scorpion (Evil Star), The Silver Citadel (Nightrise) and Day of the Dragon (Necropolis). Horowitz was clearly aiming for the same audience that read the Alex Rider novels with these rewrites, and The Power of Five has gained more public recognition than his earlier works, earning number 1 in the top 10 book chart.[2] In October 2008, Anthony Horowitz's play Mindgame opened Off Broadway at the Soho Playhouse in New York City.[16]Mindgame starred Keith Carradine, Lee Godart, and Kathleen McNenny. The production was the New York stage directorial debut for Ken Russell. Recently he got into a joke dispute with Darren Shan over the author using a character that had a similar name and a description that fitted his. Although Horowitz considered suing, he decided not to.[17] In March 2009 he was a guest on Private Passions, the biographical music discussion programme on BBC Radio 3.[18] On 19 January 2011, the estate of Arthur Conan Doyle announced Horowitz was to be the writer of a new Sherlock Holmes novel, the first such effort to receive an official endorsement from them and to be entitled The House of Silk. It was both published[19][20][21] in November 2011 and broadcast on BBC Radio 4.[22] In August 2012 Horowitz was interviewed by BAFTA Kids' Vote and he gave his top 5 tips for young and aspiring writers. They were to read more, write more, go out and have adventures, believe in yourself and to enjoy your writing.[23] Horowitz began writing for television in the 1980s, contributing to the children's anthology series Dramarama, and also writing for the popular fantasy series Robin of Sherwood. His association with murder mysteries began with the adaptation of several Hercule Poirot stories for ITV's popular Agatha Christie's Poirot series during the 1990s. Often his work has a comic edge, such as with the comic murder anthology Murder Most Horrid (BBC Two, 1991) and the comedy-drama The Last Englishman (1995), starring Jim Broadbent. From 1997, he wrote the majority of the episodes in the early series of Midsomer Murders. In 2001, he created a drama anthology series of his own for the BBC, Murder in Mind, an occasional series which deals with a different set of characters and a different murder every one-hour episode. He is also less-favourably known for the creation of two short-lived and sometimes derided science-fiction shows, Crime Traveller (1997) for BBC One and The Vanishing Man (pilot 1996, series 1998) for ITV. While Crime Traveller received favourable viewing figures it was not renewed for a second season, which Horowitz accounts to temporary personnel transitioning within the BBC. It has, however, attracted somewhat of a cult following.[citation needed] The successful 2002 launch of the detective series Foyle's War, set during the Second World War, helped to restore his reputation as one of Britain's foremost writers of popular drama.[citation needed] He devised the 2009 ITV crime drama Collision and co-wrote the screenplay with Michael A. Walker. Horowitz is the writer of a feature film screenplay, The Gathering, which was released in 2002 and starred Christina Ricci. He wrote the screenplay for Alex Rider's first major motion picture, Stormbreaker. In an interview with BBC Radio 5 on 6 April 2011, Horowitz announced that he was writing the sequel to Steven Spielberg's Tintin: Secret of the Unicorn. The sequel is rumoured to be based on the Tintin comic Prisoners of the Sun and directed by Peter Jackson, who produced the first film.