Not much to report this month because I've been chained to my desk (a slight exaggeration) working 26 hours a day (another slight exaggeration) on a new book called Once (that bit's true).
It's the story of two kids in war-torn Poland in 1942 looking for their parents. If you know anything about what went on in Europe in World War Two, particularly for Jewish kids, I'm sure you can imagine it's not the easiest book to write.
But it's not all bleak either. It's also a story about stories and how our imagination can help us when things get tough. About how humour is often a part of that. And about how, if we're lucky, we get help just when we need it from a heroic dentist.
I'll be able to go into a bit more detail next month (when I know how it ends). For now, though, some international news. Toad Heaven was published in January in the US, so if you've reading this from there, you'll probably find Limpy, Goliath and Charm sitting on a shelf in a bookshop, drugstore or drive-in library near you. (Toad Rage will probably be close by as well.) Before you go looking, you can read and listen to the first chapters of both books here.
And if you're driving in the UK, please try not to crash into any book delivery trucks because Girl Underground is on its way to bookshops and libraries for release in March. Again, you can sample the first chapter here without having to scrape any ice off the windscreen whatsoever. (That's the first time I've ever used the word whatsoever. I don't think I will again.)
Finally, since Worm Story came out in Australia in December, I've received a few enquiries about whether I have, have ever had, or fear I might ever get, tummy worms. The answers (in order) are no, yes, and hope not.
OK, that's it, back to Poland in 1942 for me.
Until next time, oo-roo and happy reading,
21 February 2005
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