Bookshops and libraries are coming back to life at last. That can be life-changing in itself. As the Children’s Laureate Cressida Cowell has been reminding us… ‘Libraries change lives – Literacy changes lives’ and we hope children will now be engaging with books, reading for pleasure and unleashing imaginations like never before. What better time to explore different books, read an old favourite or look out for brand new lively titles already filling the shelves?
On the subject of BOOKS & LIFE, how about a dabble with famous ghosts?
This month sees the latest in our LIVE FROM THE CRYPT series, as we discover something of the characters and events from almost 110 years ago when the world was stunned by the tragedy of TITANIC.
Just imagine it… the TV crew arrives on location on board The Cryptic, a studioboat with its own submersible vessel. Connected by satellite to crypts around the world, the boat is bobbing on the North Atlantic Ocean, 44 degrees North and 50 degrees West – 2000 metres above the wreck of Titanic. Deep down there on the seabed or still inside cabins could be some of the ghosts of those who perished in the famous ship. We are live from the wreck…
Other books in the series will be popping up later in the year…
Maybe something more soothing for bedtime is your cup of tea/cocoa. Get those thermal pyjamas ready for a wintry trip to the North Pole.
I’ve recently been putting the finishing touches to something a bit Christmassy (it’s weird how lockdowns mess-up the seasonal clock – must take down the Christmas tree soon). This sparkly book comes out in the autumn – ready to read each night through December…
This beautifully illustrated book has an Advent calendar built in – just open a window to a new story every night. Peep in on Santa’s secret world. Not many sleeps left till Christmas Eve! Night night…
Just to say – my presentations to children of all ages should be back on the road next term – a few Autumn slots are available, should anyone be interested in CREEPY CREATURES & BRUTAL BEASTS…
Happy Reading this month – MAY books offer a breath of fresh air!
Although the world has ground to a halt for over a year (even ships got clogged-up), nothing has stopped the flow of ideas, words, stories and information. Reading and writing have been bubbling away despite so much stuck in lockdown. Just wait for the massive EXPLOSION of WOW new books in a few months. I’ve been trying to do my bit, too!
Everyone has been worried. Many have felt really fed-up, even robots. After all, it’s not easy being a robot. Things go wrong, bits go missing, clog-up or get rusty. Sometimes it seems like nothing is working as it should, while other robots don’t seem to show any problems at all. That hurts… yes, even robots have feelings!
Coming soon is another box of rhyming bedtime stories for sharing with toddlers. These little board books have plenty of robotty feelings, fun characters and fab pictures…
There’s nothing like a happy robot when it begins to like itslelf…
I’m happy now, as I can see
That this is how I’m meant to be…
And, what is more, I see you too
Are far the best at being you!
Don’t forget the first of the brand new SCRIBBLE MONSTERS MANNERS books are out this month – particulalry useful for reminding little angels to keep washing their hands, thinking of others and being totally delightful at all times!
Where would we be without science and scientists – particularly right now? With Paris in lockdown to combat the spread of disease, two of that city’s famous pioneers of science would have plenty to say about current times. So why not meet Louis Pasteur and Marie Curie in their own TV shows, as they emerge from their Paris tombs and join us on the sofa? Yes, these latest LIVE FROM THE CRYPT books together with plenty of wacky cartoon strips are on their way…
Current & forthcoming books in the USA here
HAPPY READING and HAPPY SUMMER TERM!
Yes, this month whizzes by with books galore… World Book Day, National Science Week and schools returning in many areas, then maybe libraries next month. Writers and publishers are busy polishing up all the books born through lockdowns, so we look forward to lots going on in the months ahead.
Some of the titles I hatched during lockdown have now grown into plump little grubs that wonderful illustrators are magically nurturing. Soon, like butterflies with outstretched wings, the books will flutter open their pages and fly into the world… (Yes, that was a completely over-the-top metaphor caused by too many lockdowns!) Take a peep at some of them…
All these little books for little people are coming very soon and can be ordered on my UK Amazon page HERE. Here’s another box of little books for bedtime – just right for testing your animal sound effects!
Later in the year some more SCRIBBLE MONSTERS MANNERS will be joining the set of fun books that remind us how to be little angels.
All these will be available around the world – click HERE for the USA
Yet more LIVE FROM THE CRYPT books are on their way, with plenty of great cartoons from Rory Walker. You can see some of his handiwork with pen and ink by clicking HERE.
Meet famous ghosts from previous centuries as they join us on the TV sofa for a chilling chat, ghostly gossip and much more in GHOSTS REUNITED. More news of other LIVE FROM THE CRYPT books and forthcoming titles soon – in the meantime… HAPPY READING!
As the world eagerly looks forward to opening schools, libraries and bookshops, we keenly await plenty of brand new books for 2021. Many are already on their way (and some are still stuck on ships!)
The super-new Scribble Monster Manners books will be arriving soon (some already on Kindle). The FAB colour-packed illustrations will have toddlers giggling and maybe polishing up their manners! So get reay to meet all the Scribble Monsters – Inky, Blot, H.B., Pablo and Nibs, as well as their wacky pet Smudge. Just right for bedtime.
More fiction is coming later in the year but in the meantime there’s new FUN nonfiction bursting forth as we speak. The CRAZY set of LIVE FROM THE CRYPT books rolls out in the next months, where you can meet the ghosts of key figures from history keen to put their record straight. Click on the pencil or paper below to find out how some of us go about writing nonfiction and to see what’s next coming off the press anytime soon…
Click HERE for a peep at my forthcoming books at Amazon
It’s great to see that Brexit can’t stop more translations of some of my nonfiction books hitting the shelves this month. Merci bien!
Bonjour à tous – certains de mes livres sont maintenant en français!
Voici un guide interactif de la nature qui ouvrira les yeux des enfants sur la richesse et la diversité du règne animal ! Il présente des crottes grandeur nature laissées par différentes espèces animales. Il comprend des informations concises sur chaque espèce. Des cartes indiquent où chaque espèce animale vit dans le monde. Des graphiques comparent la taille de chaque espèce à celle des humains.
Au revoir, restez bien et continuez à lire des livres!
et aussi en Turquie!
Despite lockdowns, restrictions and being reduced to tiers, our imaginations can be unlocked whenever we wish – with a BOOK! 🙂 That can be with nonfiction, as well as fiction or poetry or (shock horror) a combination of all sorts in one book. Sorry, librarians.
Like many books, Live from the Crypt started off with just two words: What If? What if famous characters from history were guests on a 21st century TV chat show? What if ‘Ghosts Reunited’ brought together friends and enemies from the past? What if we could link live by satellite to people and scenes from long ago?
So, through the wonders of modern technology and a dollop of imagination, a series of ten books of the TV shows are on their way. The first four are now here.
What you call these books is up to you! Nonfiction is often a misleading term. It covers a multitude of styles and genres to help us connect with the ‘real stuff’ of events, people, information, dates and yes, facts. Even if dressed in fantasy and humour, surely something of ‘the truth’ can shine through. So, through interviews, panel games, quizzes, graveside banter and even commercial breaks, the movers and shakers from the past are brought to life for our amusement and edification. These books are designed to be read alone or in groups, or even performed and recorded. Or just enjoy the stylish comic strips sprinkled with details from historical records. Whether that’s nonfiction, you decide. We simply call it Live from the Crypt, and trust everyone learns something as the ghosts come out to tell their stories – live on air.
Thank you to schools for telling me what you’ve been reading and writing lately. What delightful letters I’ve received from Awsworth Primary after they’ve been reading together The Secret Message.
Don’t forget another mix of fact and fiction in my two new mystery books out this month – just right for a Christmas SHIVER!
Plenty of new titles for all ages are on their way in 2021, including all sorts of little picture books for toddlers’ bedtime tales. Funny characters, quirky vehicles, ridiculous robots, dinosaurs, farm animals and pirates will all be popping up and yes, even something Christmassy for NEXT Christmas!
It’s bedtime now – it’s dark out there, The world is waiting, everywhere…
Sweet dreams and HAPPY CHRISTMAS BOOKS!
Yes, it’s the month of ‘Books with Facts‘ to keep us all extra busy and bursting with WOW information. That can mean AMAZING books.
Once upon a time, Non-Fiction conjured up images of big encyclopaedias or chunky volumes stuffed with every subject under the sun. Now there’s so much more choice for discovering information, real historical characters and events, as well as advice, news and inspiring life-stories. Books of all shapes, sizes and desgins now give us bite-size facts sprinkled on pages packed with lively visuals and often wrapped in adventure or chuckles. In other words, Non-Fiction can be any sort of book that has ‘real stuff’ in it that leaves us knowng a bit more about ourselves and our world. What’s not to like?
Welcome to the TV show ‘LIVE from the CRYPT‘ where our TV hosts invite ghosts from the past onto their sofa for chat, quizzes, arguments and much more. Laugh & Learn in this new series out this month – just right to brighten up Non-Fiction November. Find out more by clicking on these pictures…
If you’re much younger and want to discover farmyard animals or dinosaurs with feelings, you might smile at a set of cute board books in boxes coming early next year. Just right for snuggly bedtimes.
Just in case you fancy some fiction in Non-Fiction November (shock horror) these two SHIVERS titles are out this month. Yes, they’re stories… but some of the weird goings-on in them could well be TRUE!
Click below for details in the USA
And plenty more fun for toddlers coming soon in 2021…
By the way, I’m thinking of writing a new NON-FICTION book all about the greatest CASTLE DUNGEONS… could be a BEST CELLAR!
Happy Non-Fiction November!
Yes, it’s time to restock those bookshelves in October for a jolly mix of wacky nonfiction, rhyming picture books and horrendous history. Plenty of new books are being published over the next months so here are a few to keep toddlers to teens reading, smiling and sparking…
Just imagine it – a new TV chat show where the guests on the sofa are long-dead characters from history. Meet them in the new series called ‘LIVE from the CRYPT‘. Discover personal secrets of the great, good and downright villainous in the Ghosts Reunited features and get to grips with all sorts via ‘In a Nutshell’ where historical background is explained simply within a minute by a visiting ‘expert’. Plenty of comic-strip capers bring the past to ghostly life, as well as panel games and quirky quizzes. The first 4 titles of 10 are due out anytime soon. Click below to restock!
For those a little younger, there are 8 fun-filled picture books on the way, featuring the Scribble Monsters to give us a gentle nudge about manners. Whether they forget to say their pleases and thankyous, need a reminder about ‘bathroom etiquette’, picking up litter or being considerate to others, our little monsters have charming ways to help the wildest of us to become little well-mannered angels!
Meet the friendly Scribble Monsters who scribble lots of signs And write how manners can be fun on all their scribbly signs…
Tracking and tracing seems to be the new normal – but how about in a new set of board books for little fingers that like to follow the trail then lift the flap? Plenty of wacky vehicles and funny characters are chugging towards us for soothing sensory bedtime sense-ations.
WARNING – It’s here again…
Yes, October is the dreaded month of shivery spookiness. Look out for the new HALLOWEEN STREET to make you giggle in the dark!
The night that troubled Mr. Clark Was Halloween – just after dark, When children spot-on half past four Came ‘Trick or Treating’ at his door… (The full grisly story HERE)
Climb to the tower of the Creepy Castle – but beware the dungeon dweller! At midnight, visit the mad professor’s Scary Lab, and then go to the Monster Mansion and Witch’s Hut. PHEW – finally you can relax and pop the books back inside the box to enjoy a 3D spook-scape! OOPS – BREAKING NEWS… Due to the pandemic, printing/deliveries have been held up so we’ll have to wait until next year for this one!
As if that isn’t scary enough, brace yourself for more in the SHIVERS series – just on their way… Don’t have NIGHTMARES!
And FINALLY – but forever fantastically FABULOUS….. Congratulations to Dawlish College Library for being awarded the Reading for Pleasure Award after our World Book Day Extravaganza.
Yes, it’s BACK TO SCHOOL for many children and staff this month after being away for what seems ages. So all the best to everyone in this ‘new normal’ and in getting back to class, friends and lots of new books! Here are a few due soon in our new ‘Live from the Crypt‘ TV show style history series – packed with facts, fun and fab cartoons
Just in case you like your history with a large dose of cheesy jokes, this month’s big anniversary of MAYFLOWER 400 is packed with groans on both sides of The Atlantic, with the help of 2 versions of my ‘Gross and Awesome‘ book. You have been warned!
Spot the difference
Click on USA version or UK…
For all those ‘Little Monsters’ out there who need reminding about washing hands, using toilets, keeping safe and having the best of manners, we’re looking forward to seeing our series of fun picture books for toddlers – packed with rhyme and reason with the help of the charming SCRIBBLE MONSTERS. More news about these soon but click on a cover to get a kindle edition now or a book next year:
If all those monster manners are just too exhausting, then what better for sleepy toddlers than dreamy tales of snuggly animals ready for bed? Click the cover below for sweet dreams in the Land of Nod!
With chilly nights drawing in, snuggle up with some cosy bedtime friends:-
Ssssh it’s late, so snuggle tight – curl up in bed, turn down the light. Now shut those eyes – sweet dreams – GOODNIGHT.
Have a great time back at school in Snoozy September and enjoy exploring plenty more books whatever your age – HAPPY READING!
Pssst – for a a peep at more Townsend Titles, click on HERE
Over 20 ‘Truly FOUL & CHEESY‘ titles are now available as Kindle books. For just over £2, you can cackle at your Kindle with any of these fact-filled fun reads. ENJOY! (click on image below to see/buy)
It’s not long now until the first set of ‘LIVE FROM THE CRYPT‘ books arrives. Meet some of the most famous ghosts from history as they pop up on the sofa on the Ghosts Reunited TV chat show…
All with FAB illustrations from the hilarious Rory Walker who is busy illustrating the next batch involving ‘Live from the Wreck’. Can you guess which ghosts will be arriving dripping wet on the TV sofa? More news soon. By the way, if you think these are silly, just wait till you tackle the SUMMER READING CHALLENGE. Have a great summer – silly or otherwise! Keep safe and smiling, as well as reading…
To everyone venturing back into schools this month (and all those who have been attending throughout lockdown) VERY BEST WISHES and keep taking care. Whenever you can, WASH THOSE HANDS!
For younger children, we have a set of fun books coming out soon to remind us all about manners, thinking of others and doing the right thing for the benefit of all. Hmm, I wonder who might need a copy.
Six books are on their way, all with the FAB SCRIBBLE MONSTERS showing us how to behave kindly to others – in a fun rhymey way rather than being annoyingly preachy. Here’s a quick peep at washing away pesky viruses…
Good luck with social distancing in schools for as long as it takes. Keeping 2 metres apart is a meaty topic to grapple with, with plenty of scope for both numeracy and literacy. I’ve had a quick go myself…
What does 2 metres apart look like?
It’s about half as long as a Volkswagen Beetle
(With bumpers, it has to be said)
Or three times as long as an average footstep
Or as long as a king-size bed.
It’s one-and-one-fifth the height of Napoleon,
Fully-dressed, but not in his hat…
That’s two-times taller than General Tom Thumb,
In his socks, vest and undies, at that.
It’s about a quarter the length of a red London bus,
Or if you prefer (now don’t laugh)
It’s one-tenth as tall as a brachiosaurus
Or three-tenths as tall as a giraffe.
It’s the length of a fully grown African lion
Or an African elephant’s ear,
It’s one-tenth as long as a full cricket pitch,
Or one-hundredth of Great Yarmouth Pier.
It’s two-fifty thousand red blood cells lined-up,
Or the length of a contra-bassoon,
Or just a bit more than a double-bass height,
Or 0.000000005 times as long as from here to the Moon.
That’s a whole lot of space with too much in the way,
And rules alone fill countless pages;
Two metres of minefield between anxious souls…
No wonder we’ve not met for ages!
So, all the best with keeping your distance and avoiding anything scary. There again, you may like a bit of scariness now and again – safely and teasingly creeping from the pages of a book. Coming out at the end of the year (when we hope we shall all be out a bit more) are two more titles in my SHIVERS series to give us something else to have NIGHTMARES about. Brace yourself.
Stories that dabble in the unexplained, mysterious and ‘aliens’ have been told with relish in flickering firelight for thousands of years. Many of those tales have been about strange lights or curious shapes seen flying through the sky. Stories told of mysterious events, places and creatures have delighted and scared us ever since our ancestors imagined what might be lurking ‘out there’. Viruses not included – these threats are far more visible… sometimes. Unsolved and unexplained tales still have great power to grip us in their scary spells. They spark our imaginations, chill our nerves and may even send an icy shiver down our spines. Either that or they’ll scare your pants off. You have been warned…