UK and International School Specialists
Working with over 5000 schools in the UK
Over 800 International Schools in more than 65 countries.

News from Authors Abroad

Explorer Leon McCarron first evening event at the Broughton Hall Children’s Literature Festival

7th September 2018

The first event of the Broughton Hall Children’s Literature Festival that is open to the public is an evening talk by explorer Leon McCarron at Bradford Grammar School on Thursday 27th September 2018.

This will take place 6:30-8:30pm.

Tickets are priced at £7.50 plus a small booking fee of £1.04 per ticket.

Tickets are available from Eventbrite:

Leon McCarron is a Northern Irish adventurer, filmmaker, writer and motivational speaker based in London. Leon’s vast experience in travel and adventure have made him a compelling and engaging storyteller.

In December 2015, Leon McCarron set off from Jerusalem to walk 1000 miles through the heart of the Middle East. Working on the premise that the brain works best at 3 miles per hour, this talk explores the various layers of culture, history, faith and politics at work in the bubbling cauldron of one of the most complex and compelling places on earth – the Holy Land.



The Magical Wood, has been awarded Bronze at the Junior Design Awards 2018.

3rd September 2018

We are absolutely delighted for our author Mark Lemon and his book ‘The Magical Wood’ which has been awarded Bronze in the Best Designed/Illustrated Book for Children category at the Junior Design Awards 2018.


Mark says:

‘We’re very proud that our little book with a bereavement story line has been recognised by all of the amazing judges.
We were up against fantastic children’s publications: ‘Here We Are’ by Oliver Jeffers, ‘Politics For Beginners’ by Usborne and ‘My First Book Of Quantum Physics’ by Sheddad Kaid-Salah Ferrón & Eduard Altarriba.’
If you would like the author of this wonderful book to visit your school, please get in touch with Trevor Wilson on +44 (0) 1535 656015, or email him at

Tamsyn Murray win two awards in one week!

9th July 2018

Congratulations to our Tamsyn Murray on winning both the Hampshire Book Award and the Bolton Children’s Fiction Award for her fantastic teenage novel ‘Instructions for a Second-hand heart.’

“Jonny has a faulty heart and his time is running out. Niamh has just lost her twin brother in a tragic accident. As their fates collide, soon Jonny is on the mend – but desperate to know more about his donor. When he tracks down Niamh, he only intends to find out about her brother, the first owner of his heart. He doesn’t plan on falling in love…A stunning, tear-jerking novel about grief, guilt, and the unpredictability of love.”



If you would like to host a visit from Tamsyn in your school please phone Trevor Wilson on +44 (0) 1535 656015, or email him at

Karl Nova’s debut Rhythm and Poetry wins the CLiPPA 2018

27th June 2018

We are absolutely thrilled to announce that our very own Karl Nova has won the very prestigious CLiPPA award for his debut poetry collection ‘Rhythm and Poetry’ published by us here at Caboodle Books.

To win such a fantastic award with a debut is a testament to Karl’s talent and how young people respond to his words. We are delighted that the judges and audience loved him as much as we do.

The official press release is below.


Announcement of the Winner – CLiPPA 2018 (Centre for Literacy in Primary Poetry Award)


  • Hip Hop artist and debut poet Karl Nova announced as the winner of CLiPPA 2018
  • Rising Stars poetry collection, by poets and performers from under-represented communities, is highly commended


Grace Nichols, Poet and Chair of the CLiPPA 2018 judges praised the winning book: “This book really stood out for me with its refreshing use of the rap genre, its musicality, its immediacy and thoughtful reflections on the creative process. Karl Nova’s poems ring true with a sincere charm that children and young people can relate to and that may inspire their own writing.”


Rising Stars by Ruth Awolola, Victoria Adukwei Bulley, Abigail Cook, Jay Hulme and Amina Jama, published by Otter-Barry Books, was highly commended.


Rhythm and Poetry is Karl’s first published book, with his poems being drawn from his extensive work as a poetry educator and the many workshops he holds in schools. It has a refreshing directness, honesty and authenticity which encourages children to see poetry in the everyday, explores the musicality of poetry and demonstrates the currency and significance of rap as an art form, especially for young people.

Karl’s win comes at a time when poetry is being embraced into the mainstream; a popularity echoed in children’s poetry, and the raised profile of CLiPPA. The award is the flagship event in CLPE’s year round championing of poetry.

Through their Power of Reading project, CLPE work with teachers and with poets to really understand how to make poetry teaching engaging and impactful in classrooms. This year, with the support of the Siobhan Dowd Trust, they

have ensured 350 free copies of the shortlisted poetry books will be sent to teachers nationally to celebrate poetry with children.

As the award grows year on year the trickle-down effect on children’s poetry publishing is self-evident with an increase in CLiPPA submissions of almost 70% for 2018.


Louise Johns-Shepherd, Chief Executive, CLPE said: “At CLPE, we are determined to celebrate the very best children’s poetry by involving more schools, producing more resources and getting more poetry books into schools. We promote it, we research it, we help teachers to use it in schools – we are poetry because poetry is the gateway to literacy.”

Karl Nova received the award and a cheque for £1,000 in front of a packed audience of poets, educators, publishers, shadowing school children and media at The National Theatre.  The shortlisted poets all performed on stage alongside children from the CLiPPA Shadowing Scheme, whose winning performances were selected from hundreds of competition entries. Everyone who attended received an advance copy of the new anthology from National Poetry Day, Poetry for a Change.

CLiPPA is made possible by the generous support of ALCS, Siobhan Dowd Trust and St Olave’s Fund.

Films of the shortlisted poets performing and teaching resources are available at                                      @CLPE1             #CLiPPA2018


Notes for Editors

The judging panel was chaired by the poet and one of the first ever CLiPPA winners, Grace Nichols along with Kate Wakeling, poet and CLiPPA 2017 winner for Moon Juice, Imogen Lycett Green, Director of the Betjeman Prize for Young Poets, Charlotte Hacking, CLPE Learning Programme Leader and Anthony Anaxagorou, poet, poetry educator and founder of Out-Spoken Press.


The CLiPPA 2018 Shortlist in full:

  • John Agard:The Rainmaker Danced, illustrated by Satoshi Kitamura, Hodder
  • Ruth Awolola, Victoria Adukwei Bulley, Abigail Cook, Jay Hulme, Amina Jama:Rising Stars, illustrated by Riya Chowdhury, Elanor Chuah and Joe Manners, Otter-Barry Books
  • Joseph Coelho:Overheard in a Tower Block, illustrated by Kate Milner, Otter-Barry Books
  • Sarah Crossan:Moonrise, Bloomsbury
  • Sue Hardy-Dawson:Where Zebras Go, illustrated by the poet, Otter-Barry Books
  • Karl Nova:Rhythm and Poetry, illustrated by Joseph Witchall, Caboodle Books

Performance films and teaching materials for all the shortlisted works are available for free on


Karl on stage at the ceremony.


Karl with his award and Author’s Abroad Head of UK author visits Yvonne holding the sketch Chris Riddell did of Karl during his performance.


To Make a Booking

To make an enquiry about Karl Nova, 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

Mark Lemon’s latest book nominated for an award

13th June 2018

We are delighted that the fifth publication by children’s author, Mark Lemon, has been shortlisted by the Junior Design Awards 2018.

‘The Magical Wood’, was written to help children suffering with the bereavement of a loved one, and proceeds from every copy sold
will be donated to children’s bereavement charity, Winston’s Wish.

The Magical Wood is available to purchase at and


Good luck Mark – a wonderful book and a fantastic cause.



To Make a Booking

To make an enquiry about Mark Lemon, 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

Coral Rumble wins The Caterpillar Poetry Prize 2018

4th June 2018

Congratulations to Coral Rumble. We are thrilled to announce she has won this year’s prestigious Caterpillar Poetry Prize.

The Caterpillar Poetry Prize, run by the junior art and literature magazine The Caterpillar and awarded annually to a single unpublished poem written by an adult for children, was judged this year by the British poet Chrissie Gittins.


Coral scooped first place with her poem ‘Mustafa’s Jumper’.


Well done Coral, we are so pleased for you!


If you would like to have Coral and her wonderful poetry workshops in your school please phone Trevor Wilson on +44 (0) 1535 656015, or email him at

John Row and his storytelling well received at Swindon Literature Festival Family Day

24th May 2018

Our acclaimed storyteller John Row had a great time entertaining audiences at Swindon Literature Festival Family Day.

See a news article about the event via the following link:

Swindon Advertiser Article


To Make a Booking

To make an enquiry about John, 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


Student’s story produced following a visit from Kathryn White

17th May 2018

During Kathryn White’s recent visit to West Acton Primary School one of the students produced this wonderful story which he has allowed us to share.


The Scary Seas

Written by Mohamed E, West Acton Primary


Once upon a time I went camping under the sea! I went camping in the water with my friend. I felt worried and nervous as I laid by tent on the wet, sandy floor. Then I ate my breakfast and felt much better. It was rice crispies and of course I had them with salty water instead of milk.


As I was eating, I saw a merman hiding from killer whales. I peered at them all from my tent. A school of fish swam across  the scene and sharks then added to the cacophony. My goggles fell off and all of a sudden I couldn’t see for a moment…but, then I saw a light. It had telekinesis and gave me my goggles back!


I could see the light now and in fact, once those goggles were in place I could see it was a not a light but an underwater sorcerer. He told me he wanted me to save the world. “I’m not strong enough to fight for the world I replied. The sorcerer answered “I can turn you in to a strong sea creature with an enchanted spell! Ummmsa-tikyaa-ra-na-fo-lioro-taji!”


As the spell worked its magic on me, I turned into an actual, ferocious (but very cool) sea dragon. I started roaring at the killer whales and sharks and got their attention. Evil sea goblins were watching the sharks and killer whales and put their fingers in their ears to stop the loud sound. I moved forward and trod on them like they were ants being squashed by giant dinosaurs that eat elephants!


Suddenly, from the corner of my eye, I saw my friend Lucas transform into a sea snake. The sorcerer had put a spell on him too! I called him the Serpent of the Sea. He was a metal snake with a horn and was 7 feet long. He was made of a golden steel. His eyes were red and he spat out green fire.

Just then, I woke up – the sea camping was gone and I was on a boat. A pirate boat! I saw an angry pirate crew looking at the sky. Aliens were there and it was an alien and pirate battle. “Charge” they yelled. “Drill bit blitz” I yelled and they found us flamethrowers to attack. I used my hyper-beam power to fight back. Just then, the fight finished and an old man, maybe it was the captain of the boat, screeched “You have done it!” 

I looked at the man and realised it was the sorcerer from under the sea. He had brought me here to fight in this fight to save the world! “Just because you have saved us all, you can keep your powers” he said to me. 

“Well then if there is any more trouble just call my name,” I replied.

And that’s how my sea adventure turned me into a hero of the world.



Fantastic work Mohamed!


Have your pupils/your child produced some work during one of our author visits they would like to share on our website? Send it in to


Want to organise for an author or poet to visit your school and run writing workshops to inspire students? Please contact Trevor Wilson on +44 (0) 1535 656015, or email him at

Karl Nova shortlisted for prestigious children’s poetry award

30th April 2018

We are delighted that Karl Nova’s debut novel, which we published, has been shortlisted for the CLiPPA 2018!

See the official announcement below:


“The Centre for Literacy in Primary Education (CLPE) is delighted to announce the 2018 shortlist for the CLiPPA (Centre
for Literacy in Primary Poetry Award). Established in 2003, the CLiPPA encourages and celebrates outstanding poetry
published for children. This year sees the largest ever number of poetry book submissions following a bumper year for
eligible poetry.

The 2018 shortlist celebrates and highlights the diversity of voices in the UK poetry scene. From debut collections Sue
Hardy-Dawson’s Where Do Zebras Go and Karl Nova’s Rhythm and Poetry, to the legendary John Agard’s The Rainmaker
Danced. From books already receiving recognition – Sarah Crossan’s Moonrise and Joseph Coelho’s Overheard in a Tower
Block – to the Rising Stars collection celebrating under-represented voices publishing their poems for the first time. The
shortlist is evenly split between 3 previous winners and 3 debut collections, with 3 out of the 6 shortlisted books coming
from independent publisher Otter-Barry Books.

Louise Johns-Shepherd, Chief Executive, CLPE said “CLiPPA is leading an essential movement to build on the current
huge popularity of poetry and the growing poetry market to ensure that poetry for children is acknowledged as an
essential part of this landscape. The shortlist recognises not just great children’s poets but great poets full stop. We
want as many people as possible to know about these wonderful works and CLiPPA, the Shadowing Scheme and the
resources we produce all come together to make sure that they receive the high profile they deserve.”
This year has seen an increase in submissions of almost 70%, from 19 books from 9 publishers in 2017 to 32 books from
19 publishers in 2018.

The full shortlist is:

  • John Agard: The Rainmaker Danced, illustrated by Satoshi Kitamura, Hodder – witty and satirical poems that
    focus on social observations, play with myths and traditional tales and reflect on the nature of humanity.
  • Ruth Awolola, Victoria Adukwei Bulley, Abigail Cook, Jay Hulme, Amina Jama: Rising Stars, Otter-Barry Books,
    illustrated by Riya Chowdhury, Elanor Chuah and Joe Manners – a showcase for five fresh and exciting emerging
  • Joseph Coelho: Overheard in a Tower Block, illustrated by Kate Milner, Otter-Barry Books – a powerful
    collection, offering glimpses into the challenges of a boy’s life, ingeniously threaded through with fantasy, story,
    myth and magic.
  • Sarah Crossan: Moonrise, Bloomsbury – a moving verse novel for young adults, seen from the viewpoint of a
    young man whose brother is on death row.
  • Sue Hardy-Dawson: Where Zebras Go, Otter-Barry Books – a first solo collection uniting a variety of voices with
    a wide range of poetic forms.
  • Karl Nova: Rhythm and Poetry, illustrated by Joseph Witchall, Caboodle Books – the first published collection
    from a Hip Hop poet, demonstrating the currency and significance of rap as a form, especially for young people.


Grace Nichols, Poet, winner of the first ever CLiPPA and Chair of the CLiPPA 2018 Judges commented: “The judging
process involved passionate discussions about which books to shortlist, leading us to come up with a variety of fresh
new voices joined by established ones. This shortlist showcases a vibrant selection of poetry books that children willlove
to explore“


The judging panel is chaired by much loved poet and CLiPPA 2003 winner, Grace Nichols along with Kate Wakeling, poet
and CLiPPA 2017 winner for Moon Juice, Imogen Lycett Green, Director of the Betjeman Prize for Young Poets, Charlotte
Hacking, CLPE Learning Programme Leader and Anthony Anaxagorou, poet, poetry educator and founder of Out-Spoken

The winner of the 2018 Award will be announced on 22nd June in the Olivier Theatre at the National Theatre in London.
This will be the 4th year that CLPE has partnered with the National Theatre to deliver the Poetry Show which will include
performances from children participating in the Shadowing Scheme and the shortlisted poets. The winner of the Award
will receive £1000. Former Children’s Laureate, Chris Riddell, will live draw the Award Ceremony.

The free Shadowing Scheme to involve schools in the Poetry Award 2018 is also launched today. This has run for 3
years, reaching more than 600 teachers and 14,000 children. To support schools to take poetry into the classroom,
videos of poets performing from the shortlisted books and talking about their work and high quality teaching resources,
are available free of charge to all schools Shadowing schools are invited to apply for free
tickets to attend the Award Ceremony.

New for 2018, CLPE will be partnering with ALCS (Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society) to educate teachers and
children about copyright and about the rights of writers. The Siobhan Dowd Trust will also be supporting the Shadowing
Scheme by helping CLPE to provide free copies of the shortlisted books to selected shadowing schools.
For further information please visit or contact / 020 7401 3382

Centre for Literacy in Primary Education (CLPE)

CLPE is an independent UK charity working to raise the literacy achievement of children by putting quality children’s
literature at the heart of all learning. CLiPPA, the CLPE Children’s Poetry Award, was developed to ensure that children’s
poetry has a recognised place within children’s literature. For free poetry resources including films of poets performing
visit For further information about CLPE please visit The full list of
previous winners is available at

Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society (ALCS)

ALCS provides a unique service for all types of author. ALCS collect money for authors that can’t be administered on an
individual basis, from all over the world, from a wide variety of sources and pay it to them. ALCS campaigns for the rights
of authors and provides a collective voice for the wide variety of individuals that make up their membership. They
educate about the principles of copyright and intellectual property and their importance to authors to the general
public. ALCS currently has over 95,000 writer members and, since its inception in 1977, has paid over £450million to the
nation’s writers

National Theatre

The National Theatre is dedicated to making the very best theatre and sharing it with as many people as possible. They
produce productions on the South Bank in London each year, ranging from re-imagined classics to modern masterpieces
and new work by contemporary writers and theatre-makers. The National’s work is seen on tour throughout the UK, in
London’s West End, internationally (including on Broadway) and in collaborations and co-productions with theatres
across the country.

The Siobhan Dowd Trust

The Siobhan Dowd Trust works to give young people the opportunity to access and enjoy books. It is the money earned
through UK and International book royalties and other income from Siobhan’s work that allows the trust to support
deserving projects. Find out more at & on Twitter @sdowdtrust”


We have our fingers crossed for Karl and his ‘Rhythm and Poetry’ book!


New video about Cat Weatherill’s book Breathe

16th April 2018

We are very excited that Cat Weatherill has a new book coming out!


When you can’t control your emotions and your birthday is coming up, you need great friends…

Toby is an adorable four year old dragon who has a problem with fire. He simply cannot keep calm – until he discovers yoga! BREATHE is a heartwarming story about happiness, harmony, friendship and birthday cake.

Cat was performing for the British Council Ukraine at a book festival in Kyiv when she met Liliya Pochkun, the creative force behind Wise Bee Books. Over coffee and cake in a fabulous Kyiv coffee shop, they talked about doing a book together, and Cat told her a story idea she had in her head about an over-excitable dragon. And that was it! Their book journey together began right then.

Now the book is available. It is a beautifully produced large softcover picture book (27cm x 27cm) with gorgeous full-colour illustrations by Olga Kuznetsova. Available from Amazon

Check out the video about Cat’s upcoming book ‘Breathe’.


Interested in Cat visiting your school?


Get in touch with Trevor Wilson on +44 (0) 1535 656015, or email him at