Friday, September 30, 2016

Pierre Bouvier and Simple Plan

Recently I was lucky enough to meet Pierre Bouvier and Chuck Comeau of one of my favourite bands, Simple Plan. As both of them have kids, I took the opportunity to give them copies of my books A Day with the Duchess and A Royal Adventure. It was a pleasure meeting both of them who couldn't have been nicer.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Making Brushing Fun

Take it from me, writing a book with a moral or a lesson isn't easy. I've worked on some commissioned books and it takes all your creative energy and stretches it to the limits and then some.

Most people think that writing children's picture books are easy and that's why so many people think that they can do it. "Oh I'll write a picture children's book, it'll be easy!"

Those of us who have made it our living know otherwise. You have to take so many things into consideration and the most important message of all is how to get your message across in 600 to 800 words?

Written by first time author, Srividhya Venkat, this is a great bedtime story for kids who don't want to brush their teeth or clean up in any way.  In this story Riya has to teach her brother Rohan the importance of brushing his teeth, washing his hands and tidying up. Pretty mundane stuff but she cleverly uses the family dog as a device to get him to clean up.

This is a neat little book about the importance of personal hygiene with quirky accompanying illustrations that highlight the importance of the authors message.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

All too Much for Oliver... until it's not.

'All too Much for Oliver' is a touching story about a young boy who finds the busy world around him a bit too much for his liking. Truth be told, the busy uncontrollable world we live in is too much for some adults as well. 

Oliver is a highly sensitive child who does not like loud noises or crowds and he prefers to stay indoors and play in the tranquility of his own room rather than in a chaotic playground or the packed neighbourhood pool with children and grown ups belly flopping and splashing about uncontrollably. 

That is until Odile moves in next door and opens up new  experiences for him. Because of their fast friendship, Oliver dares to venture to a playground with her and he  even attends Odile's birthday party where he joins the many guests in all the noisy celebratory activities.

Though Odile provides him the key to a world outside the comfort of his carefully controlled playroom, it's Oliver who ultimately unlocks the door to the loud and crowded world that he bravely steps into on his own terms and in his  own time.

There are a lot of sensitive children -- and adults too -- just like Oliver who are so deeply misunderstood and judged. As a child I was an introvert and not very sociable,  some would even say I'm socially awkward, brash and some would say even worse. So I can relate to this book very well.

'All too Much for Oliver' is a sweet, sensitive story written with a lot of heart  and understanding by Leila Boukarim and charmingly illustrated by Barbara Moxham.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Don't Worry, Spratly!

Now, we all don't like change but it's an inevitable part of life. Over the years and even in the past almost 9 months, I've had to face big, difficult and painful changes myself.  Have I liked them? No...Have I worried about them? Yes...but thanks to a few very dear friends (who know who they are) I am facing them and overcoming them and moving on.

'Don't Worry, Spratly!' is a charming book about the fear of change and facing it head on. Written in delightful verse by my friend Helen Sampson, Spratly finds out that he has to move to a new school and that's a big change and understandably he finds his tummy in knots about it.

It's a sweet tale that every child and, might I add, every grown-up will be able to relate to. Though Spratly doesn't like the fact that there's going to be a big change, he knows it's going to happen anyway and in the end...well you know in the end, he'll have nothing to worry about.

This is Helen's first picture book and it is just delightful and as an added bonus there is a craft section at the back of the book that parents can use to entertain the little ones. 

Great job, Helen.  Hopefully this is just the first in many adventures we can expect from Spratly and his friends. To find out how to order this fast-selling book, please click on the link below.

                                     ORDER SPRATLY

Friday, August 26, 2016

Meet Kobe the Cavoodle

Meet Kobe, the newest member of our family. A puppy is a lot of work, but also gives you a lot in return. They may be naughty and may occasionally drive you completely nuts, but they will love you unconditionally, they'll make you laugh and they will always be loyal to you.  So please meet my best friend, Kobe the Cavoodle.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Congratulations, Joseph Schooling!

Congratulations to Singapore's first Olympic Champion --Joseph Schooling.

Saturday, August 6, 2016

The Journey Home

Children's writers have to be very sensitive when they are dealing with a sensitive topic like death. I've seen some books that try to deal with topics like neglect or compassion and oh boy, I wish I had never picked them up.

You've got to know your subject really well and you can't make it didactic either, so it was with great delight that I received my copy of Charlotte Douglas's The Journey Home.

The author carefully traverses the landscape  spirituality and the well-spring of emotions that comes with the death of a loved one. In this beautiful heartwarming story, Oscar and Kiki's grandmother has passed away or has gone to her eternal home and with the help of their angel friends, Alexandra and Maksim, they realise that Grandma is with Grandpa, all her friends who have passed on before her and even Scottie, their cheeky dog.

This is a must read for any parent and any child, it will warm  hearts and bring tears to the eyes. In a world that is filled with so much war, anger and hate over the big things and small, this book reminds that life and love is precious and above all it is everlasting. Kudos to Charlotte Douglas for writing a masterpiece for kids and adults around the world to enjoy. And Nicola Spencer's illustrations are charming!  Make sure kids  look out for the bright shining yellow star on each page. The Journey Home is a treasure for the whole family.

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