In the most recent(July 2018)edition of Good Reading Magazine, a great review of Stephen Hart’s beautiful novel, The Lighthouse at Pelican Rock, has just appeared. Bravo, Stephen!
The reviews for Stephen Hart’s fabulous novel, just published this month with Eagle Books, have started coming in, and they’re excellent!
Here’s a short extract from a review at Kids’ Book Review:
There are many sub-stories built into a storyline that keeps the reader engaged from beginning to end. Terrific characters, tension, and well-paced progress, added to lots of unexpected turn-offs through the plot, kept me longing to know what the outcome will be. Then came the completely unexpected ending!
And here is a short extract from a review at Read Plus:
Themes such as friendship, family dynamics and mystery are delved into. There are lots of smaller story lines that are interwoven in the story and it is intriguing to try and match them all together. It certainly kept me turning the pages. I would recommend this book for children 11 and up as some of the storyline can be quite complex. A welcome addition to the collection.
Read the reviews in full at the links above.
We are delighted to announce that we have acquired novelist, scriptwriter and playwright Julian Leatherdale’s first novel for children, The Phantasmic Detective Agency, via the Selwa Anthony Author Management Agency.
The Phantasmic Detective Agency is an original, inventive and gripping fantasy adventure novel for readers aged 10+, set against the backdrop of pre-Great War Europe, when the modern world is being born: gas lamps giving way to electric lighting, horse-drawn carriages to motor cars, spiritualism and superstition to technology and science. But there is always room for magic…
The Phantasmic Detective Agency will be published by Eagle Books in March 2020.
About the book:
London, Christmas Eve, 1911.The world is changing fast: giant warships, aeroplanes with bombs, spies and assassins, fear of war with Germany. The cosy lives of Lily and Leopold Keeler and their famous stage magician father Edmund Keeler are about to be torn apart by secrets, espionage and monstrous creatures from the shadows.
Trapped in their stuffy Edwardian childhoods, the Keeler siblings pine for adventure. Lily (14) dreams of being Britain’s first woman detective while Leopold, known as ‘Leo’, (15) would love to be a pilot, the newest kind of hero. They both envy their eccentric uncle Alfred, a brilliant and notorious Sherlock Holmes-like paranormal detective who uses his deductive powers and esoteric equipment to solve mysteries from the world of spirits and mythical beasts.
When their uncle’s performance of a Christmas Eve shadow-puppet play of Little Red Riding Hood unexpectedly releases the hungry spectre of the Shadow Wolf, Lily and Leo will get more adventure than they ever bargained for.
But Shadow Wolf proves to be only the first mystery in a conspiracy that threatens to destroy the Keeler family, as Lily and Leo witness their parents, Edmund and Alice, vanish for real in the middle of their latest spectacular magic act. So they turn to their eccentric uncle to keep them safe and solve the mystery of their parents’ disappearance.
From the Royal Naval dockyards of Plymouth to the bone-stacked catacombs of Paris, Uncle Alfred and his two apprentice detectives, Lily and Leo, confront eerie creatures and blood-chilling danger as they are chased by a ruthless spy-ring determined to harness the dark forces of Magick as weapons of war. As Lily struggles with her refusal to believe in shadow-wolves and ghosts and her brother Leo takes terrible risks to impress their eccentric uncle, the Keeler children find moments of great courage and inspired cleverness, as they try to solve the mysteries in Uncle Alfred’s casebook with plenty of clues and spine-tingling intrigue along the way.
About the author:
Julian Leatherdale is a novelist, scriptwriter and playwright. His theatre work includes four comedy cabarets, two musicals (Alex in Videoland and The Golem of Prague), a monologue for Breaking Bread and the black comedy The Man Who Became Santa. He wrote animation scripts for children’s TV with SquareZero, London and researched and co-wrote two Film Australia-ABC TV history documentaries The Forgotten Force and Return to Sandakan. His adult historical fiction novels are Palace of Tears (A&U, 2015 and HarperCollins Germany, 2016) and The Opal Dragonfly (A&U, 2018), with The City of Shadows (A&U) forthcoming in 2020. He lives in the Blue Mountains with his family.
The Phantasmic Detective Agency is his first children’s novel.
We are delighted to announce that we have acquired world rights to publish The Girl in the Mirror, award-winning poet and short story writer Jenny Blackford’s enthralling middle grade novel. It will be published in the Eagle Books imprint in October 2019
About the book:
Maddy is picked on by bullies at her new school and terrified by ghosts in the old house her family has moved to – but she soon becomes friends with Clarissa, who slept in that same room and used the same mirror more than 100 years earlier. Then Maddy’s baby brother nearly dies of whooping cough, and Clarissa discovers that her poisonous Aunt Lily is even more evil than she seems. The two girls have to use all their intelligence and verve to fight against Aunt Lily’s plots, each in her own time, with help from Clarissa’s ghostly brother Bertie…but will they succeed?
An enthralling, original middle-grade novel by award-winning poet and short-story writer Jenny Blackford.
About the author:
Jenny Blackford writes poems and stories for people of all ages, usually with a tinge of myth and legend, ancient history, science, or deep time. Over 30 of her short stories and over 50 of her poems have appeared in Australian and international anthologies and journals including Westerly, Australian Poetry Journal, The Pedestal Magazine, Strange Horizons and Going Down Swinging.
She loves to write for kids as well as adults. Her poems and stories for kids have been published in the School Magazine, Our Home is Dirt by Sea: Australian Poetry for Australian Kids, Stories for Nine Year Olds and other wonderful places. Kids aged 11 plus should enjoy her poetry books The Loyalty of Chickens and The Duties of a Cat, both published by Pitt Street Poetry, as well as her YA novel set in Ancient Greece, The Priestess and the Slave, published by Hadley Rille Books.
Jenny’s most recent poetry prizes are first place in the NEWC Thunderbolt Prize for Crime Poetry 2017 and first place in the Humorous Verse section of the Henry Lawson Awards 2017. She won two prizes in the Scarlet Stiletto Short Story Awards 2016 for a murder mystery set in classical Delphi, with water nymphs. In 2014 she was awarded third in the prestigious ACU Prize for Literature 2014.
Jenny’s degree was in Classics (Greek and Latin) at the University of Newcastle, but she took a twenty-year detour into large mainframe computer networking before she returned to her first love, writing.
We at Eagle Books are delighted to announce that we have just acquired rights to award-winning author Simon Higgins’ fabulous new historical adventure novel, Tomodachi: The Forest of the Night. Set in the same dangerous, magical Japanese world as his earlier novel, Tomodachi: The Edge of the World, it is however a self-sufficient adventure which will have readers on the edge of their seats. Eagle Books will be publishing the book in March 2019.
About the book:
Tomodachi: The Forest of the Night
By Simon Higgins
Cover and internal illustrations by Jenny (Yuxiao) Wang
Published by Eagle Books, an imprint of Christmas Press
Release: March 2019
RRP : $19.99
Shipwrecked at the far end of the world in a land at war.
Befriended by runaways fated to harrowing paths.
In constant danger from warriors, bandits and superstitious villagers who take his blue eyes and pale skin as proof that he’s a demon…
Young Daniel Marlowe and his Japanese ‘tomodachi’, his friends, Otsu and Kenji, are about to stumble into a stomach-knotting adventure where a ferocious public test of samurai virtue and a murder investigation will collide.
Their hazardous journey promises answers. The hope of being joyfully reunited, the risk of confirming loss.
But the spirit world has its own part to play in their destinies, for someone -or something- waits watchfully in the ancient Forest of the Night.
About the author:
Simon Higgins is a former police officer, prosecutor and private investigator specialising in murder cases. A martial artist and published author with an international career spanning over 20 years and 14 novels published in several languages, he has also been an Australian Government Ambassador for Asia Literacy and an Endeavour Award Recipient, funded by his country to live and study in China. Simon was the first westerner to pen an interactive Visual Novel published in both Chinese and English. In 2008 he competed in Kyoto, Japan, in the annual Taikai, the world championships of the sword art Iaido, held on a mountaintop before a Japanese prince. Simon placed fifth. When not working on novels or teaching around the world, he leads a professional team writing an animated series for Chinese TV.
About the illustrator
Jenny Wang, who also happens to be Simon Higgins’s wife, is the CEO of Crane Animation and the creator of the iconic animated Chinese characters Cocoa and Little Love, watched on over 1000 TV channels in Asia and on planes, trains, buses, internet channels, even giant screens on skyscrapers. Her series has won over 160 awards. She has a Masters Degree in Creative Media from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, plus a degree in Engineering from the Chinese equivalent of MIT. An expert animator and artist, Jenny has taught students of all ages how to draw Manga and Anime style characters using techniques she developed that instantly impart skill and confidence. Her life story, going from a desperately poor village childhood in rural China to seeing her own creative and business dreams realised, is an empowering message of self-esteem and positivity she has shared with young people around the world.
We are delighted to announce that our next Eagle Books title will be The Lighthouse at Pelican Rock, the fabulous debut novel of talented new writer Stephen Hart. The Lighthouse at Pelican Rock will be published in May 2018, with beautiful cover and internal illustrations by Kathy Creamer.
About the book:
After 12-year-old Megan Evans almost dies, she is packed off to the tiny, remote coastal village of Pelican Rock to recover. Sure she is going to be bored in a place which doesn’t even have the internet, she discovers there is much more to Pelican Rock that she expected. Are the pelicans really magic? What is the secret of the ruined lighthouse? Has she found the place where she belongs? And, perhaps, not just a place…
This first novel by talented new writer Stephen Hart is a magical, moving, memorable story that will grip readers from the start.
A joy to read: the kind of story that made me want to be a writer. (Cassandra Golds)
About the author:
Stephen Hart was born in Singapore to English parents, and emigrated from England with his family when he was seven.
Stephen has a PhD in archaeology and spent several years in Jordan running archaeological digs. He is still regarded as one of the world experts on Edomite pottery.
He moved from archaeology to computer programming and has worked in computer gaming, embroidery machines and racecourse totes. He now works for a major Australian telco.
He is an accomplished jazz musician (sax and piano). He is married to Australian author Pamela Freeman and they live with their son in Sydney’s inner west.
The Lighthouse at Pelican Rock is Stephen’s first children’s book.
About the illustrator:
Kathy Creamer is an illustrator and writer whose work has appeared in numerous books, in Australia and overseas. Most recently, she has illustrated the new edition of Max Fatchen’s A Pocketful of Rhymes(Second Look, 2017) and her work has also appeared in the anthologies A Toy Christmas(Christmas Press, 2016) and A Christmas Menagerie(2017). Her picture book with author Sophie Masson, See Monkey, is to be published by Little Pink Dog Books in 2018.
Originally from the UK, Kathy now lives in northern NSW with her husband. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Literature and a Master of Arts in children’s illustration. Under the name of Kate Amesbury, she also writes for adults and has had short stories published in several anthologies as well as other writings being awarded high commendations in the Ada Cambridge Prize for Biographical Prose.
We have an exciting announcement: for one month only from Monday October 9 to Monday November 6, we will be open for submissions of fabulous adventure novels for readers aged 11 and up. All details are on our Submissions page: if you are thinking of submitting, please read the instructions carefully.
There’s a great review of Jack of Spades just published on the Kids Book Review blog. Here’s a short extract:
Rosalind Duke is just the kind of plucky heroine I love at the centre of my historical fiction. She’s happy to step outside the social norms of her time and she keeps a cool head about her in thrilling circumstances. And there are plenty to be found in this fast-paced adventure.
You can read the whole review here.