Archive for the ‘ writing ’ Category

Two new Joseph books!

I am delighted to announce that two new titles in the Young Joseph series – published by SPCK and illustrated by Andy Catling – have been released today!

Joseph and the Forgetful Servant (featuring Ninja Cows)

Joseph finds himself in prison, with only his imaginary cows to keep him company. Soon he’s joined by a butler and a baker who used to work for Pharaoh. The butler and the baker have strange dreams. Can Joseph work out what they mean?

Joseph and the Dreaming Pharaoh (featuring Paparazzi Cows)

Joseph is still in prison in Egypt, with only his imaginary cows for company. Pharaoh’s butler, who promised to help him, has forgotten all about him. Meanwhile, Pharaoh is having some very strange dreams. Pharoah’s butler remembers that Joseph helped him to understand his dreams. Can Joseph do the same for Pharaoh and finally be free?

You can check out and/or buy the books – plus others in the series – on the Young Bible Heroes website

The remaining books in the series are due out in January 2018:

Joseph and the Missing Cup
Joseph and the Fearful Family

Give My Regards To Uncle Stalin

Today I am guesting on the Crime Readers’ Association Blog. I talk about how readers sometimes read books through their own personal lens and how one reader objected to my portrayal of Josef Stalin in book 2 of the Poppy Denby Investigates series – when Stalin doesn’t even appear in the book! I do, however, present a cross-section of characters who are both pro and anti-Bolshevism in a period when people were still trying to work out what the new movement might mean. The Kill Fee is set against the Russian Revolution and the plight of the exiled Romanovs in London.Poppy meets an eclectic mix of them including a White Russian princess actress, the killer of Rasputin, and some secret agents from both sides of the conflict. Our intrepid sleuth has to find her way through it all to track down the thief of a priceless Faberge Egg and to stop a murderer from striking again. To read the whole article visit the CRA Blog here.

Smith (The Jazz Files) returns to formidable and spunky Poppy Denby, arts and entertainment editor for the Daily Globe, in this inspirational whodunit set in post-WWI London. As Poppy goes from covering a Russian art exhibit to looking for a murderer and a missing Fabergé egg, she takes on charming and possibly nefarious Andrei Nogovski of the Russian embassy. With help from Rollo Rolandson, her boss; fellow reporter Ike Garfield; aunt and suffragette Dot Denby; and best friend Delilah Marconi, Poppy follows leads and discovers that people aren’t always what they seem. Interspersed with Poppy’s story are flashbacks that center on a young Russian aristocrat and the nanny who saves her from the fate of the rest of her family. The audience follows them as they cross the Russian landscape and wait to see how their story intersects with Poppy’s mystery. The complicated plot, involving a myriad of both White and Red Russians, is offset by the list of characters at the beginning, reminding readers of numerous important names and their allegiances. Smith weaves together a diverse cast, including both male and female characters in positions of power, and depicting a variety of ethnicities and abilities without resorting to stereotypes. Embark with upstanding, uplifting Poppy and her friends on a mystery involving jewel thieves, Russian royalty, murders, sword fights, car chases, and secret tunnel. Full review here.