Chalking up post no. 1

Greetings - Tom Donegan here from CBI. I must admit to being a wee bit afeared at the thought of stepping in young Mr Maybury’s mighty brogues, but I’ve decided to overcome my trepidation so that I might spread the word a little about a fantastic new book by the wonderful Jane Mitchell.

A previous winner of the Bisto Book of the Year Award, Jane’s latest title Chalkline (Walker Books) marks a return to novel-writing after a break of almost a decade - and what a comeback!

Taking up the story of Kashmiri schoolboy Rafiq, the narrative charts his devastating inculcation into the ranks of a band of rebel freedom fighters. It’s hard-hitting stuff and Mitchell doesn’t flinch from the darkest aspects of the issues at stake, though the harsh reality of children being involved in terrorist activities is softened on occasion by more light-hearted insights into everyday village life in this little known part of the world.

Based on the author’s real-life experiences of travelling in the area, the landscape and characters are alive with authentic detail and it’s little wonder that Amnesty International have endorsed it as contributing to a better understanding of human rights and the values that underpin them. High praise indeed!

Chalkline is available in all good bookshops now. Younger readers can also look forward to Jane visiting a library or school near them, as she will be touring the country as part of this October’s national Children’s Books Festival events programme, details of which will begin to appear on the CBI website over the coming months…

Phew, now time for a deep breath! How did I do? ! td

NEWSFLASH - I have it  on good authority that Jane will be on the RTE Radio 1 Arts Show with Vincent Woods this evening (Monday 15th) from around 8pm. Turn on, tune in…

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What would Dave say?

I thoroughly enjoyed David’s live blogging of last year’s Children’s Books Ireland Conference.

I knew we were going to miss it this time around. Though, I have a feeling that this year Dave, as a hip young thing, would have put aside the blog and stuck with Twitter throughout the weekend.

So let me present my attempt at Dave’s twitter summary of the weekend

International illustrations rock as do our own writers. Writing is joy and all kids need to see themselves in books. Eoin colfer is funny. #CBI Conference 09

Very Hungry Caterpillar

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