Recent events

I’ve done several events around the country over the past few weeks, both in schools and libraries, some alone, others with Garry Parsons. Here are a few photos:

The two Grk covers and the Dragonsitter collage are drawn by children at Elson Primary in Gosport, where I spent World Book Day. The entire school – staff and pupils – were in costume, most of them dressed either as Grk or a dragon. It was wonderful.

All the other drawings are by Garry.

A day in Derbyshire libraries

The librarians of Derbyshire invited me to their fine county last week to talk about my books and launch their Summer Reading Challenge.

I spent the morning in Chesterfield library and the afternoon in Ilkeston.



The first photo shows me with Councillor Dave Allen and some pupils from Abercrombie school; the others are from Chesterfield and Ilkeston libraries.

More on the library’s pages:

Calderdale Book Award

I’m delighted that The Sultan’s Tigers has won the Calderdale Book Award.

I was nominated for this award a few years ago for Bearkeeper, but didn’t win. When I went back to Halifax last week for the ceremony at the Central Library, I remembered that occasion, and felt quite sure that, once again, I would be watching someone else win the award. But this time I won.

Here is a picture of me with two of the other writers nominated for the award, Simon Mason and Sam Gayton. I travelled back on the train with Sam, and he took revenge during an epic three-hour marathon of ipad games, every one of which he won.


I’ve been whizzing around the country over the past few weeks, visiting schools, leading creative writing sessions and talking about my books.

I had a great World Book Day at Fairholme School in Hounslow – here are some fantastic photos. If you click through to the last one in the collection, you can see a picture of me opening Fairholme’s great new library. I actually got to cut the ribbon!

I went to Brixington School in Exmouth, and here is a nice piece from their local paper.

And here’s a photo from a day that I spent at Harris Academy in Peckham.

Thank you to these three, and all the other schools who have hosted me. I’ve been from Nottingham to Yeovil, Folkestone to Croydon, and I always come home buzzing from the enthusiasm of the kids and teachers. An ordinary day at my desk, sitting on my own, telling stories, feels very quiet and mundane…

Review of The Island of Thieves

There was a lovely review of The Island of Thieves in The Times last week, written by Amanda Craig.

Josh Lacey made a name for himself with his charmingly Tintinesque adventures about a boy and his dauntless dog, Grk. In The Island of Thieves, Tom Trelawney is foisted on his irresponsible Uncle Harvey while his exhausted parents go abroard for a week.

Uncle and nephew share the same nose – not least for mischief. Harvey, an inept conman, just hapens to have stumbled on a tantalising diary about treasure buried by Sir Francis Drake in Peru, so the pair head to South America. Harvey, however, owes a criminal a lot ofmoney and is told he must repay him with the treasure, or die. Luckily the vital clue is being used in a remote Peruvian toilet…

Funny and action packed, this well-paced, smartly written crime caper is just the thing for boys of 8+. Uncle Harvey is a wonderful comic creation; more, please.

If you’re a subscriber, you can read the whole article behind the paywall.