This week in the Lounge (or on the Lounge?) we are talking books. I want to talk about a sadly now defunct but genius idea that I stumbled across about a decade ago. The book was written in 1997. The imprint is Starfish Publications, and it specialised in "quality books written by children aged five to fifteen". I love this idea so much; that books for children can be written by children. What a way to open the door to a love of reading and writing. I have struggled to find more information on this publisher, so I can only guess it is unfortunately no more. Please correct me in the comments if I'm wrong.
The book is called Escape. It is a picture book written by the then thirteen year old, Matthew Roden. The book is hilarious. It's witty and clever and was a favourite with my boys, even though the humour is quite sophisticated, appealing to adults.
The story tells of the adventures of a school boy trapped on a desert island with nothing but his Handi-Dandi Survival Kit and Book. The book is great, and if you can somehow lay your hands on it, do! However, even eBay came up empty, so it may be a tricky task.
What I love most of all however, is that it was written by a child. A business set about making dreams come true, something rare these days. The book embodies the fulfilment of a child's ambition. To borrow from Epic, it is a reminder that 'no dream is too big, and no dreamer too small' or as the more mature thirteen year old said at the time:
Maybe next time a child says they want to do something or be something, we will listen a little more and open our minds to the possibility of what could happen, if we really set out to make it so.
Linking up with The Lounge.
In my totally disorganised fashion, I managed to track down the author of this much beloved book of ours, in order to see if he was still writing. He is (some articles here if you're interested), and volunteers at the Sydney Story Factory, a not-for-profit creative writing centre for young people. Check out their website for workshops and events, or sign up to their newsletter to see their on going offerings.
And while on books, these are the last few days of the wonderful Lawn Library, for those in Sydney that have yet to check out the truly delightful offering in the Festival Village.