Thursday, 25 February 2021

Interview with Children's Author Tamsin Mori - The Weather Weaver (Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books)


Hello Everybody. We hope you are all feeling more positive about the future. Reading is certainly a good way to help raise the spirits.  One of our children's book picks for March 2021 is The Weather Weaver by Tamsin Mori. The book will be published by UCLan Publishing on the 4th March 2021. We thought this was a cracking opportunity to contact the author and ask some questions to find out more about this wonderful book and the amazing cover you can see above. 

We really hope you enjoy reading this post as much as we did asking the questions. If you would like to know more about the author of the book you can drop us both a tweet on Twitter: @Enchantedbooks or @MoriTamsin Thanks for reading and have a nice day.


Can you reveal a bit more about the book than what the synopsis tells us? That's very tricky without spoilers, but hopefully, the answers to the rest of these questions will give you some clues.


When did you get the first idea about writing this book?

The seeds of the story were sown when I was very small. Whenever we went back to Shetland to visit family, I didn't want to leave. I realised that if the fog came in, the planes couldn't leave, and we'd get to stay a little longer, so I used all my powers of persuasion to call in the fog. I wrote poems, spells, secret recipes... And sometimes, it worked! Once, we got a whole extra week in Shetland. The fog had heard me. At that point, I became convinced that I had secret weather powers of my own. 


Stella, who is the main character in the book, discovers she is a Weather Weaver. What is a Weather Weaver and how important is this to the plot?

A weather weaver is someone who can choose the weather - usually with the help of a cloud who's taken a liking to them. 

Weather Weaving is fairly central to the plot - early in the book, Stella catches a small but very feisty cloud. Their early attempts at weather weaving are erratic, verging on dangerous. It takes a close relationship, an amount of self-awareness, and great deal of trust, to be able to conjure different weathers at will. Stella and her cloud find almost every aspect of that quite challenging! But with Tamar as her mentor, Stella is in good hands.


What made you write a book set in the Shetland Islands?

Shetland is my heart's home. Though I've never lived there, half my family are Shetlanders - my mum grew up in Scalloway. All the stories I loved when I was small originated in Shetland - both island myths and family legends - and they took root in my imagination. Most of the traditional myths belong to the land, or the sea - I wanted to write one that celebrated the wide, expressive Shetland skies.


What are the top things to do when visiting the Shetland Islands? (We'd really like to visit the Shetland Islands)

That could fill several books and besides, it depends what time of year you go there! 

In winter, there's the northern lights (the mirrie dancers), and the viking festival, Up Helly Ah! 

The Weather Weaver is set in summer, which is perfect for puffin spotting - the RSPB sanctuary at Sumburgh lighthouse is a great location for that. If you want to visit the broch which features in the book, the boat trip to Mousa is a must. You can see a multitude of amazing seabirds there - bonxies, guillemots, arctic terns, and storm petrels - and climb to the top of the broch for yourself! Though, fair warning, it's a long way up. In Lerwick, the Shetland Times Bookshop is a favourite haunt of mine (surprise!). The Shetland Museum and Mareel are both definitely worth a visit and the Peerie Shop makes outstanding Cullen Skink. There's also whale watching, the otter sanctuary, Shetland Wool Week, awesome food, incredible unspoilt landscape and empty beaches... sigh. I can't wait to get back there.


What emotions do you want the reader to experience when reading this book?

All of them! One of the key themes in the book is that there aren't any 'bad' emotions - every single one has its place and its purpose. Different weathers reflect and respond to our different moods - emotions as wide as the sky. Stella discovers that, though perhaps a little too late...


What would be your favourite type of weather day?

Bright and blustery, perhaps with a few showers and rainbows to liven things up a bit. Though having said that, I do love a good thunderstorm!


You went to eight different schools in your childhood. Do you think you have gained any skills/attributes by going to so many? 

I think it taught me self-reliance, and perhaps gave me an insight into the similarities and subtle differences between how people think and behave in different places. I wouldn't recommend it, but it was useful in the story. Stella experiences some of that sense of displacement and a deep longing to belong. 


What do you think of the book cover illustration and did you have any input into it?

I adore the cover illustration. David Dean has captured the full spectrum of weather magic, with Stella standing small and brave in the centre. I was bowled over when I first saw it: "It's like David read my mind!". My husband pointed out that it was more likely he'd read my book.

I was delighted that UCLAN publishing asked for my input, though to be honest, David created an illustration that immediately felt right for the book. The only thing I was picky about was Grandpa's but'n'ben (a type of small, simple building) on the back cover - it was a grand two-storey house in the first iteration. 


What books do you read for pleasure? Is there anything that stands out for you recently? 

I read a real mixture of books - middle-grade, YA, adult fiction, and non-fiction too. Some middle-grade books that I've adored recently are: Vi Spy, by the brilliant Maz Evans, The Castle of Tangled Magic by Sophie Anderson, and Gargantis by Thomas Taylor. I'm waiting impatiently to jump into A Tangle of Spells by Michelle Harrison, but my daughter has first dibs.


Tuesday, 23 February 2021

Elle McNicoll - Show Us Who You Are - (Knights Of) Book Review (Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books)


Some books are really special as they just hit you right between the eyes. This is the second book by Elle McNicoll entitled Show Us Who You Are and it will certainly knock your socks off. Published by Knights Of on 4th March 2021 with a stunning book cover illustration by Kay Wilson. After reading the blurb, the concept of this story was very intriguing. However, I did not expect the totality of the story inside. What do you think if you were made perfect after you die?

In all honesty, this is not a book I would normally seek out and buy. With everything we are all going through, I'm mainly reading magical fantasy. I'm really looking for worlds that are uplifting and make you feel good - that type of plot. In contrast, this is not that type of book and maybe a tricky read if you are not in the right frame of mind. However, sometimes you have to bite the fantasy bullet and give it a go. This book certainly provokes a lot of thought - it is inspirational and challenging.  

If you do feel able to read this and to have your emotions scattered on the wind then you will not be disappointed. This book asks so many questions of the reader and is one of the saddest books I've read for a long time.  You really immerse yourself in the world of the two main characters. Cora and Adrien are two peas in a lonely pod (Cora is Autistic and Adrien has ADHD). The author has portrayed them both so well and with such understanding, it is magnificent and so heartbreaking to read. In some places in the story, there was even a tear running down my cheek. 

The plot is so clever - it is a great story in which to write both characters into. I don't really want to mention the plot details of the story as I want you to read this book open-minded. However, themes are around being different and accepting that being normal might not always be the way forward.  

This is a black and white story told in a technicolor rainbow that showers empathy and emotion. It's a holographic 3-D experience that will cut through daily life by showing diversity through the working minds that we should all read and hopefully begin to understand. Everything is told with immense compassion and bags of heart. Every page is packed full of adventure, technology, holograms, sorrow, and some timely mischief that slices some of the emotional tension away. It's a five-star read - it's something different and unique that should be read and loved. 



Saturday, 20 February 2021

The Best New Children's Book Picks March 2021 - Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books

 

Struan Murray - Shipwreck Island - Published by Puffin (4th March 2021)

Ellie and Seth's breathtaking magical adventure continues in the sequel to the much-loved Orphans of the Tide.

After defeating the Enemy and escaping the Inquisition, Ellie and Seth have fled the City and crossed the endless ocean in search of peace and the truth about Seth's lost memories.

Arriving on the shores of a colourful tropical island ruled by a mysterious queen, it seems their hardships may be behind them. But there is trouble brewing in paradise, and soon Ellie and Seth find themselves caught up in a dangerous struggle for power - and forced to confront terrible truths from the past . . .


Danny Wallace & Gemma Correll -  The Day the Screens Went Blank - Published by Simon & Schuster Children's UK (18 Mar. 2021)

A hilarious middle-grade road-trip adventure from bestselling author, comedian, and presenter Danny Wallace, with illustrations throughout from Gemma Correll. Perfect for fans of Liz Pichon and David Baddiel!

Imagine if all the technology in the world just . . . STOPPED.

When ten-year-old Stella wakes up to discover a world full of BLANK screens, her family, town, and in fact, the whole world seems to have been thrown into chaos. And what about poor Grandma who is stranded at the other end of the country?

Cue a rollicking madcap road trip, full of driving disasters and family fallouts, as they set off on a rescue mission. And along the way Stella and her family discover that being away from screens might not be the Worst Thing Ever, and even though they might not be able to rely on technology anymore, they can rely on each other instead.


John Kelly - The Monster Doctor: Slime Crime - Published by Macmillan Children's Books  (4 Mar. 2021)
Are you looking for the best monster medicine EVER?

Then look no further! FIXITALL will heal tentacle pain, fix leaky noses and stop your limbs falling off – in fact, it will heal practically any common monster illness. (It must be true, because it says so right there on the packet.)

When an annoying saleswoman called Ms Diagnosis arrives at the monster doctor surgery, she swears that her new wonder medicine can cure any monster malady. Ozzy and the monster doctor aren't so sure, and their suspicions are raised when the patients try the unusually slimy samples and strange things start happening . . . 

Laughter is the best medicine, so give yourself a healthy dose of fun and silliness with Monster Doctor: Slime Crime. The third in a spectacularly slimy series of monster adventures written and illustrated by John Kelly that will have you roaring with laughter



Tamsin Mori - The Weather Weaver - Published by UCLan Publishing (4 Mar. 2021)

What if you could befriend a cloud? 

                                                 What weather would you choose?

What if the weather matched itself to your mood, whether you wanted it to, or not?

11-year-old Stella has returned home to Shetland to spend the summer with her Grandpa, but it's nothing like she remembers. Grandpa is lost in his grief for Gran, the island is bleak and Stella feels trapped, until she encounters an old woman, Tamar, who can spin rainbows and call hurricanes. With the help of Nimbus, a feisty young storm cloud, Stella begins to learn the craft of weather weaving. But when her cloud brain-fogs Grandpa and The Haken (a sea witch) starts to close in, she realises that magic comes with big responsibilities. It will take all her heart and courage to face the coming storm...


Monday, 11 January 2021

The Book Cover Wars Final 2021 - The Winner & the End is HERE

Hello Everybody! This is the very final post on Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books. We have been around for the last thirteen years but have finally taken the decision to stop posting on this blog. It would have been wonderful to find someone to take this over but alas this has not been the case. We've all had challenging times in the last year so it has been a very difficult decision to make. I've had a blast running the blog and thoroughly enjoyed every minute but, at some point, the pressure that I've been putting on myself to do a better job needs to come to an end.

As you know, we wanted to celebrate the challenging times with one more final of the book cover wars. It has been a highlight of mine and something I have enjoyed doing every year. It was such a great opportunity, when we started this idea, to celebrate the talented people and the unsung heroes behind some of our favourite and iconic book covers. This competition was embraced by the children's book community and made for some nail-biting moments which entertained us all. 

This year was another cracking moment with five superb rounds. The final managed to gain great momentum with 955 votes - just what we wanted - including some great banter on social media.  The final came to a fantastic conclusion last night where we found another excellent winner .... the fantastic book cover to the latest book by Nizrana Farook - The Boy Who Met a Whale illustrated by David Dean and Designer Nicola Theobald and published this Jan 2021 by Nosy Crow Books.  It's a brilliant book cover illustration (it makes you want to read the book straight away) and really deserves to join the hall of fame with all the past winners across the years. Many Congratulations!

 Here is the list below:

2009/10 - Jon Mayhew 'Mortlock' Illustrated by Christian Lorenz Scheurer

2010/11 - Darren Shan 'Birth of a Killer' Illustrated by David Wyatt

2011/12 - Curtis Jobling 'Werewolf: Shadow of the Hawk' Illustrated by Andrew Farley

2012/13 - Thomas Taylor 'Haunters' Illustrated by Steve Wells 

2013/14 - Niel Bushnell 'Timesmith' Illustrated by James Fraser 
2014/15 - M. G. Harris/Gerry Anderson's 'Gemini Force One' Black Horizon Illustrated by Blacksheep
2015/16 -  M. G. Leonard 'Beetle Boy' Illustrated by Julia Sarda 
2016/17 - Roderick Gordon 'Summerhouse Land' - Illustrated by Stanley Donwood
2017/18 - (No Book Cover Wars) 
2018/19 - Vashti Hardy 'Brightstorm: A Sky-Ship Adventure' Illustrated by George Ermos 
2019/20 - Joan Haig - Tiger Skin Rug - Illustrated by Annie Glennie
2020/21 - Nizrana Farook - The Boy Who Met a Whale - Illustrated by David Dean

I would like to thank each and every one of you for your support by visiting, reading, contributing and sending out books for me to read over the years. Without all of you, there was no point in this blog. You've all been there when I've been low and picked me back up many times in previous years. I'll still be around - no doubt lurking on Twitter - if you want a recommendation or wee chat. In the meantime, with a heavy heart I thank you one last time for reading this post. Stay safe, stay happy and keep on reading!

Sunday, 3 January 2021

Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books - Book Cover Wars - THE FINAL 2020/2021

This is the final of Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books book cover wars. You have all been voting over the last few weeks for the final below book covers for one last rip-roaring battle. We've had five cracking rounds and all the books definitely deserve to be here. This is a wonderful competition and so we would like to thank everyone for voting and for your support throughout the years. Without further ado, LET THE VOTING BEGIN! 

We are looking to find your favourite book cover ONCE again for 2020/2021. We do this to support the creative heroes of the children's book world; the illustrators and the creative teams behind all the books we love. So, please share this exciting adventure with your friends and followers on social media #BOOKCOVERWARS. Everyone is welcome so come and vote and share the FUN. 

As a voter, not only will you get the chance to choose your favourite book cover, but you will also be in with the chance to win a prize each week. This week's prize is a £10 National Book Token (UK only). Please leave a comment to show your interest. Good luck and let's all have some fun. 

If you are interested then all you need to do is:

  • Vote for your favourite book cover using the poll - HERE  (or at the bottom of the post)
  • Leave a comment through this post or poll - HERE (or at the bottom of the post)
  • Have fun, share, and tell the world or just a friend. Tweet, Facebook, Instagram to watch the voting develop, and wait to hear whether you've won (once the poll has closed). 
  • This poll will end on 10. 01. 2021 at Midnight UK time. 
So here are the Seven brilliant book covers to vote for this week:
 
BOOK ONE: Elle McNicoll - A Kind of Spark - Illustrated by Kay Wilson - Published by Knights Of (4th June 2020) - VOTE HERE

BOOK TWO: Nizrana Farook - The Boy Who Met a Whale - Illustrated by David Dean - Published by Nosy Crow (14th Jan 2021) - VOTE HERE


BOOK THREE: K. L. Kettle - The Boy I Am - Illustrated by Thomas Truong - Published by Stripes Publishing (7th Jan 2021) - VOTE HERE


BOOK FOUR: Sophie Kirtley - The Wild Way Home - Illustrated by Ben Mantle - Published by Bloomsbury Children's Books ( 1st July 2020) - VOTE HERE


BOOK FIVE: 
A. M. Dassu - Boy, Everywhere - Illustrated by Zainab 'Daby' Faidhi Published by Old Barn Books (22 Oct. 2020) - VOTE HERE


BOOK SIX: 
Eve McDonnell - Elsetime - Illustrated by Holly Ovenden Published by Everything with Words (17 Sept. 2020) - VOTE HERE


BOOK SEVEN: 
Hannah Gold - The Last Bear - Illustrated by Levi Pinfold - Published by HarperCollins Children’s Books (18 Feb. 2021) - VOTE HERE

Happy Voting All! 




Sunday, 20 December 2020

Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books: Children's & Young Adult Book Picks US - Jan 2021

 

B. B. Alston - Amari and the Night Brothers (Supernatural Investigations) - Published by Balzer + Bray (January 19, 2021) - ISBN-13:978-0062975164 - Hardback - Age: 8+

Artemis Fowl meets Men in Black in this exhilarating debut middle-grade fantasy, the first in a trilogy filled with #blackgirlmagic. Perfect for fans of Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky, the Percy Jackson series, and Nevermoor

Amari Peters has never stopped believing her missing brother, Quinton, is alive. Not even when the police told her otherwise, or when she got in trouble for standing up to bullies who said he was gone for good.

So when she finds a ticking briefcase in his closet, containing a nomination for a summer tryout at the Bureau of Supernatural Affairs, she’s certain the secretive organization holds the key to locating Quinton—if only she can wrap her head around the idea of magicians, fairies, aliens, and other supernatural creatures all being real.

Now she must compete for a spot against kids who’ve known about magic their whole lives. No matter how hard she tries, Amari can’t seem to escape their intense doubt and scrutiny—especially once her supernaturally enhanced talent is deemed “illegal.” With an evil magician threatening the supernatural world, and her own classmates thinking she’s an enemy, Amari has never felt more alone. But if she doesn’t stick it out and pass the tryouts, she may never find out what happened to Quinton.



Rebecca K. S. Ansari - The In-Between - Published by Walden Pond Press (January 26, 2021) - ISBN-13:978-0062916099 - Hardback - Age: 8+ 

Cooper is lost. Ever since his father left their family three years ago, he has become distant from his friends, constantly annoyed by his little sister, Jess, and completely fed up with the pale, creepy rich girl who moved in next door and won’t stop staring at him. So when Cooper learns of an unsolved mystery his sister has discovered online, he welcomes the distraction. 

It’s the tale of a deadly train crash that occurred a hundred years ago, in which one young boy among the dead was never identified. The only distinguishing mark on him was a strange insignia on his suit coat, a symbol no one had seen before or since. Jess is fascinated by the mystery of the unknown child— because she’s seen the insignia. It’s the symbol of the jacket of the girl next door.

As they uncover more information— and mounting evidence of the girl’s seemingly impossible connection to the tragedy—Cooper and Jess begin to wonder if a similar disaster could be heading to their hometown.


Thomas Kingsley Troupe (Author), Maggie Ivy (Illustrator) - The Dead Below (Haunted States of America) - Published by North Star Editions (January 1, 2021) - SBN-13: 978-1631634802 - Paperback - Age: 9+

It isn't long after Treva Gallo moves into her new Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, neighborhood that she starts to see otherworldly people around town. And the more ghosts she sees, the more they seek her out. As Treva researches her new neighborhoods murky past, she unearths more than she expected . . . and the ghostly spirits become more insistent. The spirits seem to want something from Treva. But what can a living person do for the dead? Every state has its own spine-tingling stories of ghosts and mysterious hauntings grounded in its regional history. The Haunted States of America series uses real-life ghost lore as jumping-off points to new, chilling tales. An author's note provides historical origins and fascinating facts, but beware: sometimes real life is stranger than fiction.



Nicole Lesperance (Author), Federica Fenna (Illustrator) - The Nightmare Thief - Published by Sourcebooks Young Readers (January 12, 2021) - ISBN-13: 978-1728215341 - Hardback - Age: 8+

Maren Partridge loves working in her family's dream shop where she can hand-craft any dream imaginable. The shop has only one rule. Dreams cannot be given to a person without their consent. Maren has no problem with this―until her sister, Hallie, has an accident that leaves her in a coma. Maren's certain she can cure Hallie with a few well-chosen dreams. And when no one is watching, she slips her a flying dream.

But a strange new customer from the shop has been following Maren and knows what she did. Now she's laid the perfect trap to blackmail Maren into creating custom nightmares for a dark and terrible purpose. As Maren gets drawn further into the sinister scheme, she must make a choice: to protect her family or to protect the town from her family's magic.

Pick up the first book in the Nightmare Thief if you are looking for:
  • Suspenseful stories of magical realism for kids with a side of danger
  • Gifts for 11-year-old girls, 13-year-old girls, and any young reader 11-14 that loves fantasy
  • Books that explore bullying, family ties, and feature strong female characters
  • Books for 4th graders, and any classroom with grades 3-8
  • Sunday, 13 December 2020

    Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books - Book Cover Wars + Voters Competition (Round FIVE) 2020/2021

     

    Before we close the doors for the last time on Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books, we like to take the opportunity to thank you all for the support you have shown us in the last twelve years or so. It has been a hard and very sad decision to make as it has been a fantastic journey and one that I've enjoyed very much. However, we would like to do one more fantasy tango with Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Book Cover Wars. It's been a highlight for many years so let us go out with a BANG or maybe just a fizz! 

    We are looking to find your favourite book cover ONCE again for 2020/2021. We do this to support the creative heroes of the children's book world; the illustrators and the creative teams behind all the books we love. So, please share this exciting adventure with your friends and followers on social media #BOOKCOVERWARS. Everyone is welcome so come and vote and share the FUN. 

    Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Book Cover War Rules: There will be five weekly heats (The Last One) we are having 7 book covers to vote for. All heat winners will make the grand final plus one/two book covers (Wild Card Entry) with the highest amount votes will go through from any of the heats.

    As a voter, not only will you get the chance to choose your favourite book cover, but you will also be in with the chance to win a prize each week. This week's prize is a £10 National Book Token (the UK only). Please leave a comment to show your interest. Good luck and let's all have some fun. 

    • Round One Winner: Elle McNicoll - A Kind of Spark Illustrated by Kay Wilson - Published by Knights Of (4th June 2020)
    • Round Two Winner: Nizrana Farook - The Boy Who Met a Whale - Illustrated by David Dean - Published by Nosy Crow (14th Jan 2021)
    • Round Three: K. L. Kettle - The Boy I Am - Illustrated by Thomas Truong - Published by Stripes Publishing (7th Jan 2021)
    • Round Four: Sophie Kirtley - The Wild Way Home - Illustrated by Ben Mantle - Published by Bloomsbury Children's Books ( 1st July 2020)
    If you are interested then all you need to do is:
    • Vote for your favourite book cover using the poll - HERE  (or at the bottom of the post)
    • Leave a comment through this post or poll - HERE (or at the bottom of the post)
    • Have fun, share, and tell the world or just a friend. Tweet, Facebook, Instagram and watch the voting develop, and wait to hear whether you've won (once the poll has closed). 
    • This poll will end on 19. 12. 2020 at Midnight UK time. 
    So here are the Seven brilliant book covers to vote for this week:

    BOOK ONE:
    Jennifer Killick - Crater Lake, Evolution - Illustrated by Anne Glenn - Published by Firefly Press Ltd (20 May 2021) - VOTE HERE


    BOOK TWO: Julia Green - The Children of Swallow Fell - Illustrated by Helen Crawford-White - Published by 
    OUP Oxford (6 Aug. 2020) - VOTE HERE 




    BOOK THREE: Judith Eagle - The Pear Affair - Illustrated by Kim Geyer - Published by Faber & Faber (5 Mar. 2020) - VOTE HERE 


    BOOK FOUR: Sophie Anderson - The Castle of Tangled Magic - Illustrated by Saara Katariina Söderlund - Published by Usborne Publishing Ltd (1 Oct. 2020) - VOTE HERE


    BOOK FIVE: Sophie Cleverly - A Case of Grave Danger - Illustrated by Hannah Peck - Published by 
    HarperCollins Children’s Books (21 Jan. 2021) - VOTE HERE 


    BOOK SIX: Aisha Bushby - Moonchild: Voyage of the Lost and Found - 
    Illustrated by Rachel Dean - Published by Egmont (6 Aug. 2020) - VOTE HERE


    BOOK SEVEN: A. M. Dassu - Boy, Everywhere - Illustrated by 
    Zainab 'Daby' Faidhi Published by Old Barn Books (22 Oct. 2020) - VOTE HERE


    Wednesday, 9 December 2020

    Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books - Carlie Sorosiak - My Life as a Cat - (Nosy Crow) Book Review

     

    This is a late book review for My Life as a Cat by Carlie Sorosiak as it was published in September 2020 by Nosy Crow. When I received this book through the post, I made a quick and snappy judgment not to read it. However, reflecting on my decision a few months later, I decided to have another look at it and give the book a chance. I started reading and felt it was quite slow going for me. However, the more I read, the more my own world started to slow down. In fact, the WORLD STOPPED as I became fully immersed in the characters; and what characters they are. Amazingly written, they lifted off the pages with such magical colour. I was absolutely hooked and loving this book so unexpectedly - that makes me really smile and feel delighted.

    Let me introduce you to Leonard who has never had a name ... or a body. Or in fact a best friend but he is excited to try being a human. However, unfortunately, something has gone terribly, terribly wrong. On their three-hundredth birthday, every alien from Leonard's home galaxy gets to spend a month in the body of an Earth Creature. Leonard was supposed to become a Forest Ranger in Yellowstone National Park but there was a mix-up and now he finds himself stuck as a stray cat. What is he going to do?

    At the start of the plot, he is rescued in a storm by a young girl called Olive. The journey they both go on is beautiful and so heartfelt - it really is wonderful to read. Olive is brilliantly portrayed in a wise and thoughtful way which makes this narrative very, very special. She has the biggest heart and is loyal, loving, and might be seen very differently as she is judged by other people. The concept is brilliant and depicts an amazing and poignant friendship which is both moving and eye-opening at the same time. 

    The storyline shows us the simplest of things like enjoying the sunset, sunrises, the beauty in the natural landscape, and spending precious time with family and friends. For me, I can certainly relate to that as this year has not been a great year for me and many others. However, one of my particular highlights was seeing the Cinnabar Moth and the rare Tansy Beetle for the first time. It was really amazing and helped to pull me through a tough patch - just like the characters in this book. There are some hilarious moments that cut through the seriousness of some of the topics. However, the brilliant ending is really up-lifting just like a good old movie. I give five huge paw prints for this book so please give it a chance and settle down to read it. 

    Thursday, 3 December 2020

    Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books - Book Cover Wars + Voters Competition - Round 4 2020/2021

     

    Before we close the doors for the last time on Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Books, we like to take the opportunity to thank you all for the support you have shown us in the last twelve years or so. It has been a hard and very sad decision to make as it has been a fantastic journey and one that I've enjoyed very much. However, we would like to do one more fantasy tango with Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Book Cover Wars. It's been a highlight for many years so let us go out with a BANG or maybe just a fizz! 

    We are looking to find your favourite book cover ONCE again for 2020/2021. We do this to support the creative heroes of the children's book world; the illustrators and the creative teams behind all the books we love. So, please share this exciting adventure with your friends and followers on social media #bookcoverwars. Everyone is welcome so come and vote and share the FUN. 

    Mr. Ripley's Enchanted Book Cover War Rules: There will be five weekly heats (Two after this one)  with five book covers to vote for. All heat winners will make the grand final plus one more book cover (Wild Card Entry) with the highest amount votes will go through from any of the heats.

    As a voter, not only will you get the chance to choose your favourite book cover, but you will also be in with the chance to win a prize each week. This week's prize is a £10 National Book Token (the UK only). Please leave a comment to show your interest. Good luck and let's all have some fun. 
    • Round One Winner: Elle McNicoll - A Kind of Spark Illustrated by Kay Wilson - Published by Knights Of (4th June 2020)
    • Round Two Winner: Nizrana Farook - The Boy Who Met a Whale - Illustrated by David Dean - Published by Nosy Crow (14th Jan 2021)
    • Round Three: K. L. Kettle - The Boy I Am - Illustrated by Thomas Truong - Published by Stripes Publishing (7TH Jan 2021)
    If you are interested then all you need to do is:
    • Vote for your favourite book cover using the poll - HERE  (or at the bottom of the post)
    • Leave a comment through this post or poll - HERE (or at the bottom of the post)
    • Have fun, share, and tell the world or just a friend. Tweet, Facebook, Instagram and watch the voting develop, and wait to hear whether you've won (once the poll has closed). 
    • This poll will end on 9. 12. 2020 at Midnight UK time. 
    So here are the FIVE brilliant book covers to vote for this week:


    BOOK ONE: Hannah Gold - The Last Bear - Illustrated by Levi Pinfold - Published by HarperCollins Children’s Books (18 Feb. 2021) - VOTE HERE


    BOOK TWO: Tamzin Merchant - The Hatmakers - Illustrated by Paola Escobar - Published by Puffin (18. Feb 2021) - VOTE HERE


    BOOK THREE: Sophie Kirtley - The Wild Way Home - Illustrated by Ben Mantle  -Published by Bloomsbury Children's Books (1 July 2020) - VOTE HERE


    BOOK FOUR: Saviour Pirotta - The Mysterious Island (Wolfsong) - Illustrated by Davide Ortu - Published by Maverick Arts Publishing (28 Jan. 2021) - VOTE HERE



    BOOK FIVE: Annemarie Allan - Breaker - Illustrated by Annie Glennie -  Published by Pokey Hat  (8 April 2020) - VOTE HERE