Monthly Archives: November 2015
It is time for us to climb to the highest point of Badger Towers and get ready to shout out about two very new and very exciting series due out in January 2016.
We teach children and young adults to never judge a book by its cover. Well for one blog only you can throw that rule away and treat your eyes to these visual delights…
Posted on: Nov 19, 2015
Featuring characters from multiple classic tales, The League of Enchanted Heroes follows Jack Miller as he's lured into a magical world on his way home from school. He is enticed through a door in the forest by Red Riding Hood, who hopes he will help her and her friends Rapunzel, Hansel, Gretel and Tom Thumb to defeat the giants that keep attacking them! Realising he has been mistaken for Jack the Giant Killer, he is ready to leave when they are attacked...
This imaginative, captivating story written by Tim Collins transports its reader into another world. The humorous, light-hearted storylines and eye-catching, colourful illustrations by James Lawrence will capture the interest of even the most reluctant of readers.
With a word count of 500-750, The League of Enchanted Heroes will hold the interest of a teenager with a reading age of 6-7. Written with dyslexia-friendly font and line spacing, this accessible, enticing read will attract both girls and boys.
But, if he isn't Jack the Giant Killer, who is Jack Miller?
Posted on: Nov 17, 2015
Little Red is on a mission to deliver supplies to the most advanced cake-research facility in the galaxy.
After she lands it seems that everyone is acting strangely.
Can she find out what is wrong before it is too late??
This is a story for those who love space, but who are also partial to a slice of cake!
Little Red is a story full of fun and silliness, designed to set reluctant readers aged 10-13 completely at ease. Written by Barry Hutchison with futuristic illustrations by Mark Pearce, Little Red has the perfect combination of engaging imagery and small amounts of text.
Based on the fairy tale, Little Red Riding Hood, but with a science fiction twist, this story contains strange alien monsters, a fantastical plotline and surreal humour.
By revitalising a classic tale, Barry Hutchinson has retained a sense of familiarity whilst producing a new tale that will grip and engage reluctant readers. We can't wait for them to read it!
"For you, the city, thus I turn my back:
There is a world elsewhere."
Coriolanus, Act 3 Scene 3
The planet Titan has run out of fuel so it has decided to invade a nearby planet, Antium, and steal its fuel.
A great leader will lead them in this invasion to save Titan from certain doom.
But will he return a hero or a monster?
Influenced by Shakespeare's Coriolanus, Titan has been expertly written by Danny Pearson to appeal to sci-fi fans. It features a low reading age of 6-7, with the ability to hold the interest of a 13-16 year old. Bursting with attention-grabbing two-tone illustrations, Titan will engage its reader and capture their interest to keep them wanting more.
Danny has skilfully written Titan with short sentences and simple language which, coupled with the striking illustrations by Aleksandar Sotirovski, ensure this title will appeal to struggling and reluctant readers. Boasting a realistic word count of 500-600, dyslexia-friendly font and line spacing with the look and feel of a real book, Titan is a stimulating and accessible read to be enjoyed time and time again.
"At this hour
Lie at my mercy all mine enemies."
The Tempest, Act 4 Scene 1
Ariel has a power he's never told anyone about.
He can create storms.
When Sebastian pushes him too far on a school trip, he can't stop himself.
He unleashes his power, and nobody is safe.
Based on Shakespeare's The Tempest, this book by Tim Collins boasts stormy character clashes and outdoor action, all enhanced by beautiful tempestuous illustrations by Amit Tayal. It will draw in the most reluctant of teenage readers and hold their attention until the very end.
Features of the series as a whole include a very low word count of 500-600 words, short sentences and line-spacing, dyslexia-friendly font, teenage content, contemporary illustrations and facts and questions at the back to add further depth and understanding.
Look out for more posts about this brilliant series!
Posted on: Nov 09, 2015
Frank is Emily's pet hamster and companion who can often be found perched on Emily's shoulder or occasionally hiding in her sock. Best of all, he can talk!
He is a cautious fellow when it comes to Albert Sparkle-Trousers' Adventure Park inventions, as past experience has proved that things can sometimes go wrong when they are testing out each new ride! Frank trusts Emily, but is easily wound up and will often run scared from the odd prank played by the others!
Danny Pearson, Senior Editor, tells us how he came to be...
We especially love the character of Frank the hamster. How was he born?
In the beginning Frank was a dog! It's true. Frank started off as a dog. I realised that the Snow-Man series, which was going to be released at the same time, already had a dog, Jeff/Frostbite. So with a little brainstorming between Cavan and I we decided Frank would be better off as a talking hamster.
In all honesty it was the right thing to do and I can't imagine Adventure Park without Frank. Frank now being a hamster allowed us to have him in almost every image (because he is so small). He would also be able to use his cheeks to store all sorts of objects that could help in later plot lines. He can also talk which is great as I have always wanted to know what a hamster would say if they were to be chased by ghosts, dinosaurs or a dragon.
We don't know how old Frank is, where he came from or why he can talk! I am sure though that he has been around a very long time and has seen many different people and places. There is a rumour going round that Frank was good friends with Albert Einstein and that he was the first hamster in space.
Abby skillfully depicts Frank's emotions through her entertaining illustrations and each expression is instantly recognisable. Her artwork adds another dimension to this series and will help to successfully communicate each story to the reader.
Our authors are always saying that villains are the best characters to write, and Tommy Donbavand is no exception. He says that "villains are so much fun to invent - especially if they come with secret lairs, diabolical weapons and over-worked minions!"
The weapons in the Snow-Man series are certainly diabolical, and the baddies as eccentric as their 'puntacular' names. But exactly how do these characters go from a description on the page to a striking visual image? We asked Danny Pearson, our Senior Editor, to shed some light.
Us: How were the villains brought to life?
Danny: These were a lot of fun. Tommy and I swapped many emails on how a villain should look. Strangely enough a lot of 1970/80/90s villains from films came up as these were a great source for how a villain should act and what their costumes should look like. Again, as soon as we had settled on a look I'd send a brief over to Steve and in no time at all we would have a visual for a villain. I love how different they all are.
Us: How detailed does an artwork brief need to be, and what sort of things does it include?
Danny: This is tricky. Sometimes you can write a line or two and that will be more than enough for an artist to use but other times you need a scene to look so precise that you end up writing a paragraph or more detailing what you need to go in.
I am lucky that the artists working with me on these are happy to make suggestions on an image that we are having a problem with.
Us: How important is it to get visuals right on a series like this? Any do's and don'ts?
Danny: It is so important to get the visuals right for each series. The visuals sometimes tell a part of the story that words could never do. The images are advertising the words. Without the images some of our readers would not even pick these up.
The covers take the most time to work on as these need to be the 'shop front' for the book. If the covers do not capture
Posted on: Nov 03, 2015
The first tale from this brilliant new series centres on a precocious princess who just can't make up her mind! This is not your typical princess and amphibian story and a magnificent villain named Auntie Wartcream throws a spanner in the works just when you least expect it!
Loosely based on two classic fairy tales, Princess Frog-Snogger, from veteran author, Tommy Donbavand, will keep you thoroughly entertained with his contemporary writing and witty imaginings while Mark Penman's fun, full-page illustrations lift the story off the page.
The character introduction and vocabulary list at the beginning of each book will ease reluctant readers into the story and the low word count will help to reassure them of their reading ability. We are positive that both boys and girls will be enthralled by this title and the rest of the series!