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.

You can pre-order Doughnuts, Thieves and Chimpanzees here: https://fireflypress.co.uk/books/doughnuts-thieves-chimpanzees/

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