John Chapman
John Chapman

All About John Chapman

John Chapman spent most of his career undertaking project management work in the construction industry, but he always secretly held an ambition to become a children’s author; so in 1998 he created his fictional children’s character, Jonnie Rocket. In essence, Jonnie Rocket is an ordinary boy with a secret – his bicycle morphs into a rocket enabling him to become a space adventurer. Basically John’s ambition to become an author was born out of a childhood experience. John is dyslexic, but unfortunately this wasn’t diagnosed until he was in his mid-40’s, so his time at school was very difficult, hence his desire to help other young people today.

John Chapman believes that every young person has something to offer this wonderful planet Earth and that every young person is unique and special. He intends to create 12 stories in: ‘The Adventures of Jonnie Rocket’ series and has published 4 books to date.

The ethos of Jonnie Rocket therefore focuses on giving young people self-belief and confidence, and each one of the Jonnie Rocket adventures contains an educational, moral or spiritual message, but each story is delivered in an exciting, entertaining way without being ‘preachy’.

John is determined to try to leave a legacy with his fictional Jonnie Rocket character and really make a difference to young people’s lives.

John thoroughly enjoys working with all primary year groups and is always willing to deliver different sessions to different age groups throughout the day, all of which can be adapted to the specific requirements of the school or the pupils concerned, dependent upon the interactive nature of the particular workshop (ie. individual or joint class workshops, group presentations or a school assembly).

John’s School Visits

Primary School Workshops:

John’s mission statement for all the Jonnie Rocket workshops is to ‘Entertain, Educate and Inspire’ and the key learning objectives are always defined at the outset of each session.

John uses his books in ‘The Adventures of Jonnie Rocket’ series together with animated cartoon DVD’s to create fun sessions.

John’s workshops can include:

– How to present an animated children’s character for TV,

– John’s journey as a self-published author,

– John’s creation of his fictional cartoon character Jonnie Rocket,

– John’s experience as an X-Wing Pilot in the Star Wars movie ‘A New Hope’ and how that experience changed his life,

– The consequences of bullying, including the long-term effects on the lives of both the bullied and the bully,

– The power of meditation in today’s hectic modern world,

– A range of literacy workshops, including story-telling, story-mountains, etc.,

– School transport workshop, including safety ‘choices’, etc.

John can deliver either a half-day or a full-day workshop(s).

John’s Books

the adventures of johnny rocket

The Adventures of Jonnie Rocket – ‘The Original’:

This comic book, ‘The Original’ in ‘The Adventures of Jonnie Rocket’ series is aimed at 4 -7 year olds and is a bold, colourful story with a retro feel. The adventure starts for Jonnie Rocket, aged 8, once he climbs aboard his magical bicycle. As Jonnie pedals, the bike morphs into an inter-galactic rocket Tycho 8, taking him to Planet Zuke, on the first of his many galactic missions. The story is packed with colourful, vibrant characters from Space Pirates to Aliens and will ignite the imagination of any child. This comic book can be read by children, parents or teachers or simply enjoyed as a visual storyboard.

the adventures of jonnie rocket

The Adventures of Jonnie Rocket – Saga 1 ‘The Ride of Terror’:

In Saga 1, ‘The Ride of Terror’, which is aimed at 7 – 11 year olds, Jonnie Rocket, now aged 12, races to save the school bus from catastrophe. Jonnie is called upon by Dr Avatar, his mentor who resides on the Crystal 8 at the centre of the Milky Way. His mission this time is to save the ‘ride of terror’. Will he succeed, or have the three troublemakers gone too far this time? Is a disaster inevitable? Will the ripple effect echo around the school corridors for years to come…? This is one of Jonnie Rocket’s earthly missions and is not to be missed. Jonnie Rocket, the super hero with a difference!

The Adventures of Jonnie Rocket – Saga 2 ‘The Space Lobes’:

In Saga 2, ‘The Space Lobes’, which is also aimed at 7 – 11 year olds, Jonnie Rocket, still aged 12, crashes on Planet Cranium and meets the alien Space Lobes. The world of Jonnie Rocket holds no bounds. His adventures and missions take him far beyond Planet Earth. Worlds within worlds; galaxies upon galaxies. With every new-born star there is another place to discover and explore. This time Jonnie is summoned to the Crystal 8 at the centre of the Milky Way, the residence of Dr Avatar. What will his next exciting mission be? What challenges will our super-hero Jonnie Rocket encounter this time?

The Adventures of Jonnie Rocket – Saga 3 ‘The Sea of Sargoss’:

In Saga 3, ‘The Sea of Sargoss’, which is also aimed at 7 – 11 year olds, Jonnie Rocket, is still aged 12. Continuing from the previous exciting episode of ‘The Space Lobes’, Jonnie Rocket finally reaches the Crystal 8 in the depths of the Milky Way, only to hear devastating news from Dr Avatar. An ecological disaster of unimaginable proportions is about to destroy the entire universe. Has Jonnie Rocket been given an impossible task this time? Will the menacing Slick Scarlet and his band of Buccaneers wreak their disastrous havoc?

Reviews and Recommendations

‘An interactive session which keeps the children engaged whilst discussing the important subject of safety whilst travelling on a bus. The accompanying book captured the children’s imagination straight away and had them sitting on the edge of their seats throughout the session.’

‘Thank-you so much for coming in, the whole afternoon was great and the kids really enjoyed it. I thought the meditation was wonderful and a child even mentioned meditation today as a way of calming any anger that they may have towards another person – so you definitely captured their imagination! Thanks again.’ Jane Singleton, Hampstead Norreys School Berkshire
‘They liked the pictures, they were fun, and the layout of the book was good – comic style is very popular, rather than just lots of words on a page and they felt that the imagination shown in the story inspired them to let their own imagination run away with them.’ Donita, Dorcan College, Swindon

‘John really inspired me because he is dyslexic and he is a writer now – it shows that I can be anything I want to be.’ Sophia – Year 5

‘Jonnie Rocket is a fun book and shows the moral in a clever way.’ Oscar – Year 6

‘Thank-you for coming to our school, I love the book you gave me, I’ve read it 5 times!’ Jasmine – Year 6

‘He makes safety exciting and still teaches you how to be safe.’ Lily – Year 6

‘Once again thank-you for coming in, I learnt a lot, Jonnie Rocket is a great book, you were brilliant. George – Year 6

‘My girls, 7 and 2 respectively, love Jonnie Rocket. The eldest will help me read it to the youngest and the pictures are so vivid and vibrant that she has been known to ad-lib her own additional material into the story.’

‘Jonnie gets to meet aliens, but there are no laser-blasters, no fights – it’s just a cracking story of a little boy who has a wonderful imagination and dreams about “what is out there?” and has a relationship with his bicycle that I remember well – I used to ride for hours and hours – never straying too far from home and yet, in my own little universe at the same time.’

‘A story of innocence that is rare in modern day children’s literature, a simple story and all the better for it and really supported and enhanced by top notch comic styling.  Bravo to the book’s creator John Chapman.’
‘This book is a sprint through a child’s imagination. The drawings explode onto the pages and draw the reader into the excitement of a day Jonnie cannot wait to spend on his trusty bike. The transformation of bike to rocket, subsequent battle with space pirates and landing on a strange planet all happens at pace keeping the reader engrossed. The comic book style compliments the story perfectly and I can see many more nights reading to my young son about Jonnie and his adventures.’

To Make a Booking

To make an enquiry about John Chapman, or any of the other authors, poets & illustrators listed on this website, please phone Trevor Wilson on +44 (0) 1535 656015, or email him at trevor@caboodlebooks.co.uk

Further information on John Chapman is available from his website: http://www.jonnierocket.com/