Saturday 28 September 2013

Call For Help!

Something amazing has just happened – my new book Phoenix got a brilliant review in the Guardian, where Linda Buckley-Archer describes it as an "ambitious, multi-layered, action-packed adventure that will appeal to both boys and girls... stunning and uplifting"!  Please please please, if you have a moment, could you click the link and then share the review?  There are buttons there for facebook, twitter, blogs, etc... It would really help to spread the word, and would mean a huge amount to me!

There've been quite a few other wonderful reviews coming in over the last month...  Here are some of them; click the links to see full reviews, and again, please share if you can – it really helps!

Hannah Love in Inis, the Irish children's book magazine: "SF Said's new novel is beautiful, exciting and bittersweet all at once... A special read."

M of We Sat Down: "Phoenix is a soaring space quest story packed full of starry action, adventure, science, myth, colourful characters and wowsome illustrated pages.  It’s a compelling and beautiful pageturner... For me, Phoenix is this year’s A Boy and a Bear in a Boat."

(M was also kind enough to interview me, and asked some really interesting questions – you can read the interview here!)

Raimy of Readaraptor: "I can't recommend Phoenix enough... If sci-fi is your thing then Phoenix is a must-read, if sci-fi isn’t your thing then Phoenix is a should-read, trust me!"

Bella of Cheezyfeet Books: "I'm definitely recommending to all YA fans out there... With fabulous world building, great characters and an exciting plot, there's a little something for everyone and it's definitely not one to be missed!"

Thursday 19 September 2013

New Photography

I've written before on this blog about my favourite hobby, photography.  So this week I thought I'd share some Polaroid pictures I've made in various places around the world, while writing Phoenix and working on my next book...

These two were done at Stonehenge.

This one was at Angkor Wat, in Cambodia.

These two were in Greece: the Tombs of Mycenae (above), and a castle in the middle of the sea at Napflio (below).

This one was in Kerry, Ireland, right on the edge of the Atlantic.

And finally, this one was done in London, in Hyde Park, not far from where I lived in the years when I wrote The Outlaw Varjak Paw.  I hope you like them - click on the images if you want to see them nice & large!

Thursday 12 September 2013

Events & Signings

I'm doing quite a few events & signings in the next few weeks.  If you'd like to come and get a signed copy of Phoenix or Varjak Paw, here are the details!

First up is a morning signing at Clerkenwell Tales (30 Exmouth Market, London EC1R 4QE) on Sunday 15th September from 11am-12pm.  Everyone is invited, there's no entry fee, but there will be juice and biscuits, and signed copies of my books!

Then I'm doing a signing at Waterstones Bury St Edmunds (36 Butter Market, Bury St Edmunds, IP33 1DW) on Thursday 10th October from 4pm-5.30pm.  Again, no entry fee and open to all, so I hope to see some of you there!

Finally I'd just like to say a big thank you to everyone I met at Waterstones Kensington on Monday 9th September.  The event was called 'Geeksploitation', and it involved a quiz, dressing-up, cupcakes and much general mayhem!  Sci-Fi & Fantasy authors Andy Robb and Sean Cummings were also there.  Here's the fabulous flyer, for the record:

Please call (0843 290 8419), email ( or find us on facebook (Waterstones Kensington) & Twitter (@HSKWaterstones) for more info or to book tickets.  

Wednesday 4 September 2013

Varjak Paw Around The World, #6

#6: Poland

This was one of the very first Varjak Paw translations that appeared, so it still means a lot to me.  It felt totally magical to see the cover with a different language on it; amazing to think that there would be people who thought of this book as 'Sny Kota Warlapa'.

At the time, a Polish friend told me the title meant something like 'The Dreams Of Warlap The Cat'.  I really like that.  I love the idea of putting the dreams right up there in the title, as they really are central to the book.

I'm not quite sure why they changed his name from Varjak to Warlap, but I've heard from another friend that 'Varjak' actually means 'warrior' in Polish.  (I wish I could say I knew that when I wrote it, but I didn't!)  I think that would make it a good name for a cat who dreams of becoming a great warrior – but maybe they wanted to avoid confusion...

If there are any Polish speakers looking at this blog, I'd love to hear from you!  And if you would like to see more Varjak Paw translations, have a look here...