Get Lost in a Translation

I wrote in the Autumn 2018 edition of Armadillo about the way in which books in translation can struggle to find a publisher and an audience in countries that they are not native to. A year on, it is getting better; more books are breaking down the barriers that we have inadvertently put up to stop them crossing our borders. Why we should want to do this is a question on many lips, a question that doesn’t find a satisfactory answer. This is why we should push to have more books in translation. Not because we don’t have enough of our own, but because it is important we share the differences in story-telling style. In story, full stop. We should also be encouraging our foreign counterparts to

Remembering a Summer of Holiday Reading

Sometimes the sheer joy of editing Armadillo comes from the variety and distinctiveness of the books that arrive in the post. My current pile takes me from board books for the very young - full of colour, joy and learning - through a brand new series of football books for girls, pirate adventures, trains and trolls, all the way up to the angst of being a teen. Never before has variety been the spice of so much life! I can imagine families whose children vary in ages just loving the fact that there could be a book in this selection that will suit each of them, allowing parents a few minutes peace with ‘grown up titles’ of their own choosing, safe in the knowledge that their young minds are en

Happy Roald Dahl Day!

Today celebrates Roald Dahl Day, with readers worldwide raising money for his Marvellous Children's Charity or adopting Dahlicious Dress! Roald Dahl was many things - a fighter pilot, an MI6 spy, a chocolate historian (!!) - although he is best remembered as a writer. BUT he was more even than that. He was a brilliant writer. He continues to make children and adults alike laugh out loud at some very silly stories, making light of the horrible and prompting many a reader to squirm or think eeuuggrrhhh! Now the very youngest of readers can enjoy his talent as Penguin Random House publish #TitchyToddlers Board Books with Bite! For the first time, Dahl’s books have been adapted for the very yo

Back to School!

It’s Mae’s first day, Vera is late, Ruby has a worry and the colours have got all mixed up! What can be going on? Back to school, that's what! Vera Jewel is Late for School by Nicola Kent (Macmillan Children’s Books); Ruby’s Worry by Tom Percival (Bloomsbury Children’s Books); Mixed by Arree Chung (Macmillan Children’s Books) are three completely individual titles but they all arrived on my doorstep in the same week and inspired me to write this blog bringing them together! Katie Berube introduces us, through her marriage of words and pictures, to Mae as she prepares for and experiences her first day of school. Will Mae go? And if she does, how will it be? Encapsulating brilliantly all the

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