Sunday, 28 June 2015

Danny Dread

Guten tag, mein damen und herren!

As promised, I am back with an all new blogola about an all new bookola.

It's shiny, it excites.

Yes, it's Danny Dread - the tale of a innocent boy born into a family of evil geniuses. Here's the official blurb:

You know how it is when your dad's an evil super villain? 
OK, so maybe you don't, but Danny does. As heir to the Dread dynasty, he's expected to carry on the family business of kidnapping world leaders, maiming innocent bystanders, and brainwashing sharks. You know, general evil stuff. 
The problem is, achieving world domination isn't Danny's idea of fun. In fact, he'd much rather be saving the planet than enslaving it. 
But when Dad Dread hatches his most diabolical scheme yet, Danny realizes that to defeat evil, he's going to have to start thinking evil . . .

Sounds exciting, right? Darn tooting, it does.

If you're reading this as a Joe Cowley fan (does Joe have fans? If he does, what are they called? Cowleibers? No, that's terrible, forget I said anything) you will be pleased to know that there are some similarities between the two characters. They are both misfits and they both have embarrassing dads. They also both harbour ambitions to change and become more powerful.

Other than that, though, they are quite different. Even the way Danny Dread came about was unlike either of the Joe Cowley books. 

The idea for Danny Dread was actually cooked up by my brilliant publisher, OUP - specifically, Commissioning Editor, Clare Whitston and Harriet Rogers, who did such a stellar job designing the first two Joe Cowleys. I am told they came up with it while playing table tennis. Anyway, they asked me if I would be interested in writing a story about a wannabe superhero born into a family of supervillains and it took me about a quarter of a millisecond to say yes. See, I've always been a big superhero fan. I remember this once, at a party, I ran around all night with the hood of my coat over my head, pretending to be Batman. What a twenty-seventh birthday that was.

It was a new experience, writing to spec, but I enjoyed it immensely and had loads of fun crafting a big adventure story, complete with rockets and explosions and maniacal laughter.

The illustrations in Danny Dread are by the brilliant Stephanie Lidbetter. In fact, you can catch a sneaky glimpse of a few of them here

That's all from me, as always, if you'd like to get in touch, you can do so here, through my website, my Facebook page, or by standing in front of the mirror at midnight and saying my name three times.

Danny Dread is out on the 6th August 2015 and is available to pre-order from all the usual places.

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Joe Cowley book news . . .

Yes, it's the news literally six of you have been waiting for! I can now officially confirm that there will be a third instalment in the Joe Cowley saga. It is called The Private Blog of Joe Cowley: Welcome to Cringefest. It will be published by OUP in April 2016.

I won't say what it's about because that might spoil things for people who haven't got to the end of Return of the Geek yet. (You know the bit I mean, where Mad Morris is eaten by a dinosaur and we find out that Ad is actually a visitor from the planet Plunksplat.) All I will say for now is that it is a tale of love, music and portaloos.

There will be more news to follow soon, including some more info about my upcoming book, Danny Dread. Until then, if you want to get in touch, you can do so here, or via the contact box on my website.