November 21, 2014
The time has come to say goodbye to Trapped By Monsters. For the four years the blog was active my part in writing it was, for me, an absolute hoot. One of the things I loved about TBM was that it gave me the chance to do what I miss most from the ten years I worked in a bookshop: recommending books.
From now on I’m going to do that a little differently. 😀
On Tues Dec 2nd I make my first official visit to Alexandra Park School as its Patron of Reading. In place of what I normally do at my school events I’m going to be working as a Book Doctor. Over the course of the day I’ll be taking appointments with individual students from the school’s Year 8. We’ll discuss what each student likes and dislikes. I’ll then ‘prescribe‘ a book recommendation specifically for that young person.
I believe that the right book at the right moment can make someone a reader for life. The Patron of Reading scheme is, for me, another chance to put that belief into action. Over the coming months I’ll also be recommending more books here on my own blog as another part of my role. Meanwhile, though TBM will soon be gone, you can find all the recommendations I made there on the reviews page of my LibraryThing profile.
Goodbye, Trapped By Monsters. I’d like to take this chance to thank all the awesome authors and artists with whom I shared the caves and everyone who came to visit us.
Best wishes and power to your reading tentacles,
November 14, 2014
Yesterday I was delighted to pay my third author visit to The City of London Academy to speak to three groups of excellent young people from Year 8 as part of their literacy week. As before in my sessions at this school, the students’ attention was impeccable and their questions were inspiring.
Here’s a pic taken during a previous visit:
A neighing, wickering thank you to the school’s librarian, the dynamic Sean Delaney (above, left), for inviting me back. 😀
November 7, 2014
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The strangest thing for me about The Centrepoint Sleep Out was sleeping so close to so many other people…
We lay on cardboard sheets to soften the paving stones beneath us. Above us was a canopy roof to keep off the rain.
We needed it. In the brief period between the last late-night talkers nodding off and the first early-morning ones waking, I opened my eyes and listened.
The wind grappled with the roof, making it ripple and crack like sails on a stormy sea. Rain smashed down like hammers. Behind these sounds the snores and grumbles of the three hundred dreamers all around me were a constant, ghostly moan.
I felt like Samuel Taylor Coleridge‘s Ancient Mariner. When I got home this morning I reread it, in the Dover edition with the gorgeous artwork by Gustave Dore.
It was even more thrilling and wonderful than I remembered.
With thanks to all my friends and family who sponsored me so generously,