Penny Thomas, Publisher at award-winning children’s and YA publisher Firefly Press, has acquired UK and Commonwealth rights to Michael the Incredible Super-Sleuth Sausage Dog for7–9-year-olds by Terrie Chilvers, from Amber Caravéo at Skylark Literary Ltd.
The first book Michael the Amazing Mind-Reading Sausage Dog(Firefly, June 23) has already seen Michael confirmed as a star in the making as he has been selected as the first-ever title in the new Blue Peter Book Club, airing this week (Friday 27th October).
Following on from his successful search for stardom in book one, Michael is ready to take Hollywoof by storm once again. But being a su-paw-star isn’t working out quite like Michael planned. So, when Susan the chocolate Labrador gets dognapped, Michael jumps at the chance to wow his fans by becoming, not just a mind-reading sausage dog, but a detective mastermind as well…
Firefly Editor, Hayley Fairhead said: ‘It is no surprise that Michael the Amazing Mind-Reading Sausage Dog was selected for the Blue Peter Book Club and I’m certain this new title from Terrie will delight readers just as much. You can’t help but have a smile on your face and a chuckle ready to bubble to the surface when reading about Michael.’
Terrie Chilvers said: ‘I’m so excited that Michael and Stanley Big Dog get to go on another adventure! And I can’t wait to work with Firefly Press and Tim Budgen again – the most pawfect team!’
Tim Budgen said: ‘I’m delighted to bring to life the continuing adventures of Michael and Stanley Big Dog. They are fantastic characters to illustrate, and I can’t wait to see what they get up to in this second book!’
And Amber Caravéo of Skylark Literary said: ‘I couldn’t be more delighted that Michael – superstar that he is! – is getting a second book. Terrie has done an amazing job of creating Michael and his world, and Firefly and Tim Budgen have done an equally amazing job of bringing it all to life. It’s a match made in heaven!’
An exciting opportunity for an experienced or up-and-coming designer to work at award-winning independent children’s book publisher, Firefly Press. We publish books for five-to-nineteen-year-olds including Yoto Carnegie award-winning The Blue Book of Nebo.
Assistant Designer – maternity cover
Location: Caerphilly, Wales. Hybrid or remote working considered
Salary: £24,000 pro rata
Role type: 10hrs per week
Publishing design experience in digital marketing and editorial is desirable but not essential. Applicants should be proficient in Photoshop and ideally have a working knowledge InDesign and experience in setting up files for print.
Please send your CV and a covering letter to Megan Rees at email@example.com.
Closing date Monday 23rd October.
Firefly Press is a committed equal opportunities employer and employs people on the basis of their abilities. Positions are open to all suitably qualified candidates, and we welcome applicants from a diverse base, regardless of age, faith, disability, race, gender, sexuality and socio-economic, regional and cultural backgrounds
Penny Thomas, Publisher at award-winning children’s and YA publisher Firefly Press, has acquired World English Language rights to YA romantasy This Dark Heartby debut author Zeena Gosrani, from Gemma Cooper and Zoë Plant at The Bent Agency UK Ltd.
In a world where the shadow-like ‘daayan’ stalk the night, the mages of Agraal are the only ones able to defend the realm. So, when Princess Thiya discovers she has the powers of a healing mage, her royal destiny is no longer certain and a precarious existence on the frontline fighting against the daayan might be impossible to avoid. That is until the love of her life, Amara, is taken hostage by earth mage Isaac in order to lure Thiya and her extraordinary power from the palace.
Together with fire mage Kaayan and her brother Lochan, Thiya must make a perilous journey to rescue Amara. But not everything is what it seems and the powers at work behind Amara’s abduction might come from the darkest heart of them all.
A poignant, moving love story set in a rich and vivid world inspired by Indian folk tales.
Firefly Editor, Hayley Fairhead said: ‘The relationship between Thiya and Amara is beautifully drawn and the colourful land of Agraal is a stunning backdrop for this extraordinary love story. I can’t wait for readers to be swept away in this magical world of mages and daayan.’
And Zeena Gosrani added: ‘I’ve had so much fun weaving together parts of my culture and identity to create a world where Thiya and Amara could come alive. Thiya is a character that is dear to my heart and I hope readers love her as much as I do.’
The novel is slated for publication in October 2024.
The news is finally out! Michael the Amazing Mind-Reading Sausage Dog, written by Terrie Chilvers and illustrated by Tim Budgen, has been selected for The Blue Peter Book Club.
Working with The Reading Agency, Blue Peter will be hosting a monthly book club segment on their show. Each month, they’ll film at interesting and active locations thematically linked to that month’s book where Blue Peter presenters will join four readers for a book club discussion of that month’s title. Children who join in with the Book Club and send their reviews can earn a brand-new Blue Peter Book Badge designed by Sir Quentin Blake.
The Book Club will be launched live on Blue Peter tonight by special guest, children’s author and presenter, Greg James, and the campaign will also be supported by presenter and children’s author, Alesha Dixon.
Greg James & Chris Smith say: “We are absolutely honoured to be launching this brand-new Blue Peter badge, designed by one of own children’s book heroes, the marvellous Sir Quentin Blake. Reading is a superpower, and we know the Blue Peter Book Club and Book badge are going to inspire children across the country to put on their capes and pick up a book.’’
Michael the Amazing Mind-Reading Sausage Dog will be featured on Blue Peter, (CBBC and iPlayer) CBBC HQ, BBC Social accounts, BBC websites including the BBC Education Bitesize platform and CBBC.
BBC Education will support the Blue Peter Book Club by creating 12 companion guides to sit within Bitesize Primary.
Michael the Sausage Dog is desperate to be a su-paw-star! His newfound talent of mind-reading might be his ticket to Hollywoof, as soon as he can convince the talent show judges that he and his assistant Stanley Big Dog have what it takes. But when they reach Hollywoof, it’s not as simple a life as Michael had dreamed. A rival show has started stealing their ticket sales and it’s up to him and his new friends to create a brilliant show, win back fans, and save the theatre.
A new book from the Children’s Laureate Wales, Alex Wharton is aiming to encourage a new generation of budding poets and lyricists.
An innovative poetry ‘how to’ collection aimed at school pupils, Doughnuts, Thieves and Chimpanzees, is packed full of fun poems, limericks, haiku, song and rap from Alex Wharton, all illustrated by Rhiannon Smith.
There are brief introductions to different types of poets and lyric-writing. And the collection also contains sections on how to create your own poems, songs and more, spaces to write them, and links from songs in the book to performances on Alex’s website.
Alex, who is based in Torfaen, has been a spoken word children’s poet for a number of years, and published a first collection, Daydreams and Jellybeans in 2020, which was shortlisted for the Wales Book of the Year and the Laugh out Loud (LOLLIES) children’s book awards. He said:
‘Doughnuts, Thieves and Chimpanzees is curious, playful and imaginative. It is interactive, encouraging the reader to enjoy, collaborate on and participate in many forms of writing including limericks, haikus, raps and songs.
‘The book is fun, leaning towards the playfulness of language that I’ve found works so brilliantly in a school setting, after visiting thousands of students over the years. I hope the book inspires the reader to use poetry in their own lives, as a method of reflection, communication, solidarity, creativity, education or even therapy. The poems stir a sense of joy, and I hope that encourages a long-lasting connection with literature that is purposeful and developmental.’
Doughnuts, Thieves and Chimpanzees is to be published on 12th October 2023 by Firefly Press, and Alex also has a new collection of poetry out in February 2024, entitled Red Sky at Night, Poet’s Delight.
Penny Thomas, publisher at award-winning children’s and YA publisher Firefly Press has acquired world English rights in Libby and the Manhattan Mystery, the third instalment in The Travelling School Mysteries by author Jo Clarke, from Alice Williams at Alice Williams Literary.
In this addition to the middle-grade adventure mystery series, the travelling school arrives in New York, and Libby and her friends find themselves organising a charity auction alongside Hollywood star Eloise Fitzwilliam. But something isn’t right. Why is Eloise’s friend Count Alvarez acting so strangely and can a face from the past really have followed the school all the way to New York?
On editing the third book in this enthralling series, editor Rebecca F. John says ‘I’m over the moon that we’re able to join Libby and her friends for another adventure with the Travelling School, this time to the big apple, where glamour and mystery coincide in spectacular fashion. Jo’s fast paced, exciting writing never falters.’
Jo Clarke said: ‘I’m thrilled to be working with Becka Moor and Firefly Press on the next instalment in The Travelling School Mysteries, Libby and the Manhattan Mystery. I’ve had so much fun uncovering the hidden secrets of New York alongside Libby and Connie and creating some new characters with a few secrets of their own. This series is such a joy to write. I’m already working on the next mystery which will be set in one of the most fascinating countries in the world, Egypt.’