Ilnoblet Elmer gets 4 out of 4 stars!

OnlineBookClub.org has published their official review of ‘Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves‘, rating it 4 out of 4 stars!

 

“Children’s literature that makes learning fun is always a joy to read. Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves by Kathryn Rose Newey is one such joy… This adventure story is fit for both kids and kids at heart. As an avid Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy fan, this book’s myriad of alien cultures drew me right in. Science fiction readers who want a little fun with their science would enjoy this book… I invite you to suit up and embark on this alien journey into your own backyard.” [see the full review below]


Get your paperback or e-book copy of Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves from:

Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com 

Also at most other Amazon websites internationally. Note: the Kindle reader app can be downloaded for reading Kindle e-Books on any device (such as PC, Mac, iOS or Android).


Here’s OnlineBookClub.org’s full review (20th April 2018):

“Children’s literature that makes learning fun is always a joy to read. Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves by Kathryn Rose Newey is one such joy. Ilnoblet (Il for short) is a Gapitonian alien living on Earth as a young human boy. The book follows Il through an adventurous mystery to stop the Mootilokygogrify aliens from absorbing all Earth’s water for the Spaciton Astro-Morphing process. Using a clever combination of numbers and words, can Il stop the Mootilokygogrifies before they dry out the Earth?

“Are all the unfamiliar words in the previous paragraph making you hesitate? Don’t let them. This book is absolutely awesome. The first couple of chapters serve as a plot-driving explanation for the Gapitonians, science, and how it all fits together. There is also a glossary at the end so alien words can be looked up as soon as they’re encountered. If you’re still feeling apprehensive or you’re just not a fan of science fiction, you could skip this one, but I highly recommend giving this book a chance.

“Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves would be wonderful for ambitious readers between ages ten and fourteen. Younger readers might enjoy this with a parent. There’s plenty of action to keep kids interested, and alongside, there’s a fantastic message about fitting in. Newey captures the child’s mind so well. Il sometimes feels like he doesn’t belong on Earth with his Earth family. He struggles to fit in as both a kid and an alien. In the end, he finally feels comfortable with who and where he is. This is so important, especially for kids. As an adult, watching Il find his place on a foreign planet really changed my outlook. If an alien can fit in on Earth, I can fit in wherever I go.

“I love Newey’s use of letters and words in Il’s confrontation with the Mootilokygogrifies. It’s such a unique take on the humans vs. extraterrestrials trope. You will find no lasers or photon torpedoes in this book. Instead, it’s the powers of order and creative knowledge that allow Il to do battle. Beneath that battle, lessons about triangular numbers, palindromes, and other concepts hide, teaching through a fun science fiction tale. The epilogue of this book includes a poem Il uses to fight the Mootilokygogrifies, complete with a breakdown of the various number and word devices the poem contains. Whether you’re learning about these things for the first time or getting a reminder of long-forgotten middle school classes, this book presents an engaging and entertaining learning experience.

“With great pleasure, I rate Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves 4 out of 4 stars. This adventure story is fit for both kids and kids at heart. As an avid Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy fan, this book’s myriad of alien cultures drew me right in. Science fiction readers who want a little fun with their science would enjoy this book. The only minor criticism I have is that the first two chapters felt a little heavy on Il’s backstory, but it wasn’t enough to lower my rating. I invite you to suit up and embark on this alien journey into your own backyard.”


Children’s Writing Workshops

UPDATE! The 2pm-3pm workshop on Monday 9 April is now fully booked, so we’ve added a second workshop at 11am-12noon. Hurry and book your place (ages 9+ years) by emailing welwyngc@waterstones.com 


Why not let the kids come along to one of my interactive Kids’ Writing Workshops?

The next one will be during Easter school holidays, on Monday 9th April 2018, 2pm to 3pm, at Waterstones bookstore, Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire.

Book your child (aged 9+ years) in for this free, fun workshop by emailing welwyngc@waterstones.com

Children will meet a local children’s author, learn how to write stories to save the Earth, and find out about publishing their own books!

My books will also be on sale on the day. Hope to see you there! 🙂

Self-Published Author Fairs in Hertfordshire

It’s great that Hertfordshire Libraries are acknowledging self-published authors – by holding a series of Self-Published Author Fairs in various public libraries.

The events are aimed at bringing self-published books, often unique, to the attention of readers who can purchase them directly from the authors, as well as educating potential writers about how to self-publish their own books.

I participated in one such event at Harpenden Library in March 2018 (that’s my author table pictured). Besides me, there was one other children’s author and four adult fiction and non-fiction authors. It was wonderful to see how well used the library is on Saturdays – with lots of children and adults visiting to read and borrow books.

I chatted to lots of interesting people, including children and their parents curious about the self-published books on sale, and would-be authors and illustrators, wanting to know more about the writing and self-publishing process.

If you’ve always want to write and publish a book, but don’t know where to start, I offer coaching / lessons / consultations on writing and self-publishing for children and adults. Find out more here.

Radio Interview on Environmental Fiction ‘Animals in the Forest’

Nick Coffer interviewed me live on BBC Three Counties Radio about my environmental fiction book ‘Animals in the Forest: The Day Terrible Things Came‘ early in January 2018. Listen to the podcast of the interview on Youtube.


As background, here’s some more information about the ‘Environmental Fiction’ genre:

What exactly is ‘environmental fiction’?

It’s a relatively unexplored genre of fiction, which encompasses anything to do with nature, the natural environment, nature conservation, green issues, and/or wildlife and animal rights, within a story.

Why is ‘environmental fiction’ important?

Books and stories, whether they are paperbacks, e-books, audiobooks, braille books or picture books, are a wonderful way to engage young readers into new worlds.

Usually environmental fiction and nature conservation stories have significant elements which are true to life, for example, the descriptions of wild animals, or the green issues that characters may grapple with. Although the story itself, the characters and perhaps even the setting may be fiction, there will be parts of the story which will be realistic and accurate. These stories successfully weave non-fiction into fiction.

Environmental fiction books are therefore educational and inspirational in terms of the information and motivation they give readers; readers can take further steps by researching these important issues more and deciding on actions based on their new knowledge.

Read more about why I feel compelled to write in the ‘Environmental Educational Fiction’ genre here.


Radio Interview: You can find out more about environmental fiction and my nature conservation storyAnimals in the Forest: The Day Terrible Things Came, aimed at teens and children aged 8-14 years, which was discussed live on BBC Three Counties Radio.

Nick Coffer’s midday show of Wednesday 3rd January 2018 will be available for playback on the BBC website until 2nd February 2018 – listen to my radio interview here (from 2.44pm). Alternatively a permanent podcast of the radio interview is available on my Youtube channel here.

What do Batman and Ilnoblet Elmer have in Common?

Batman drawing by Jamie Ridge

Batman by Jamie Ridge

Or more precisely, what do an illustration of Batman and the book cover for ‘Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves‘ have in common?

Answer: Both have been drawn and designed by Jamie Ridge, who is currently an Art & Design student and aspiring illustrator!

Jamie and other Art & Design students from Oaklands College in Hertfordshire, UK, partook in a competition in November 2017 to design the book cover for ‘Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves‘.

The author, Kathryn Rose Newey, briefed the students with a synopsis of this children’s and young teens’ science-fiction story, a brief extract of a scene with Ilnoblet and an alien, and some measurements and file specifications for the book cover. The students then went off to weave their own interpretations of this story into an original book cover for it.

Jamie put his initial ideas onto paper, then translated his developed drawings into a digital drawing via a tablet drawing app. The book cover design was then tweaked and completed in online image-finishing software.

Final book cover by Jamie Ridge

Final book cover by Jamie Ridge

Kathryn says “I felt that Jamie, who hadn’t designed a book cover before, had a really good feel for what a book cover needs. His overall concept and execution were good. He had interpreted the character of Ilnoblet well for younger readers and cleverly used a reference to another science-fiction story – I think it all just works!”

You can see more of Jamie’s artwork at his Instagram account here.

Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves‘ is available in Paperback and e-Book formats from Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk (as well as various amazon websites worldwide).

Join my Exclusive VIP Reviewer Group – Get a Free Book!

Calling all children and young teen readers as well as parents, teachers, grandparents, childminders and homeschoolers – join my Exclusive VIP Reviewer Group:

What you’ll get: A FREE e-Book of my latest kids’ science fiction ‘Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves‘ to keep.  Plus you’ll have your review published, and get the opportunity in future for previews before launch/publication, more free e-books, and invitations to review other books if you want to.

What I ask of you: Simply read the free e-Book and leave an honest review on Amazon (or elsewhere)* within a week or two. That’s it!

Why do this? You’ll be helping other readers decide if the book is worth reading or not! And for an author, this is really useful. It’s a bit like the ‘chicken or egg first’ scenario: how does the book get reviews if it’s still fairly new? That’s where you come in! 🙂

Join the Exclusive VIP Reviewer Group here. Upon sign-up, you’ll get your free e-book and links to leave your review.

Thanks for your help! 🙂


Free e-Book: You’ll receive the free e-Book as a PDF file, which I’ll email to you as an attachment or link. Adobe PDF files can be opened and read on any device as long as you have Adobe Acrobat Reader software (most computers, tablets and even mobile/cell phones come with it these days – but if not, you can download Adobe Acrobat Reader for free here).

* If for some reason you don’t have an Amazon account or don’t want to write a review there, never fear! Simply write a review at any of the following places: My Facebook Author Page, as a reply/comment below this post, at Goodreads.com, or email me your review and I’ll post it on this website. Note: you only need to write the review once at one of those places.

Amazon links for Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves‘: Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.ca, Amazon.com.au, and most other major Amazon websites in the EU and worldwide.

Amazon account holders: You can write a customer review on any Amazon website as long as you have an Amazon account – this is allowed by Amazon, who know authors get book reviews in a variety of ways. Here’s what Amazon says:

“The following reviews are generally allowed, provided they comply with [certain other] guidelines: A customer writes a review of a product received for free at a trade show, convention, or other similar venue where the provider does not monitor whether the customer writes a review or condition any benefits on writing a review or the content of the review.”

What are ‘Animal Rights’? And Why Should we Care about Animals?

Picture of animal rights activists at a rally. Picture credit: https://pixabay.com/en/rally-march-protest-signs-2712259/

The term ‘Animal Rights‘ is everywhere these days. To the point where perhaps it’s easy to dismiss, like the myriad of other things vying for our attention in the modern world.

But here’s why the rights of animals are important. Now we could get into ethics and philosophy, but to me it’s simpler than that. (By the way, all clickable links included in this article are also included below under ‘sources’).

Firstly we can often see the suffering of animals. It’s right under our noses: stray animals, animals being treated cruelly or neglected, and social media posts and videos of animals suffering in zoos, tanks, labs and cages. We have to stop and ask – what kind of human beings are we, if we can see suffering, but do nothing to stop it?

Then there’s the animal suffering we knowingly or unknowingly cause through our actions. We know animals are killed or treated ‘inhumanely’ so we can eat their meat, wear their wool, fur and skin (leather), and eat or consume materials or ingredients they produce. These include: eggs from hens and other birds, tallow in banknotes, honey from bees, and things like castoreum, bone char and animal fats in perfumes, sugar, plastic bags and frozen dairy products. Not to mention rennet (from the innards of dead baby animals) in many cheeses, or gelatin (from animal ligaments) in most chewy, jellylike sweets.

Or the millions of animals we kill or maim on the roads every day with our fossil-fuel-guzzling cars and trucks, or the countless animals we hunt to purposely kill for ‘fun’ or ‘sport’. Again, if we know we are actively causing suffering of animals (or any beings, for that matter), why aren’t we doing something to reduce or stop our actions?

Cows going to slaughter. You complain about waiting in line at the grocery store - can you imagine the horror of the line they are waiting in? No living being wants to die. Picture from: http://www.rabbitadvocacy.com/animal_rights_page.htmNow I can hear the usual, sometimes loud or sometimes just confused arguments we humans like to make – “but I like eating meat/eggs/honey”, or even “but animals are just dumb and put here for humans to use”! Or perhaps “but we can’t simply stop eating cows/sheep/pigs/chickens because if we did, what would happen to the millions of these animals we have for this purpose?”

The answer to that is there’s no simple answer! But surely if we work together, we can work it out! If each person just took one action, say to cut down or cut out meat-eating, that would make a huge difference.

There’s another reason why animal rights are important too. Many of the things we do to keep, feed and kill the animals we feel we need, are causing very significant damage to the environment and to planet Earth. Our home, this planet, which is the only home we have, is being damaged by many of our everyday actions.

For example, factory farms are very common, even in countries you may not expect, for example, the UK (‘factory farms’ are where animals such as cows, pigs, rabbits and chickens are kept by the millions in very confined cages or enclosures for their whole lives, limiting their natural behaviour). Not only does this intense farming mean animal diseases are more easily spread through the unhygienic conditions and proximity, which in turn leads farmers to overuse antibiotics, leading to the spread of super-bugs and the decline in effectiveness of antibiotics for humans, but the vast quantities of pollution from the animal waste of these facilities leads to serious environmental hazards and destruction.

Then all these millions of ‘kept’ animals need food and space to be kept. So we clear large areas of forests and other lands which are exceptionally important for ecosystems and environmental health, or those which belong to indigenous tribes, to grow food for the farmed animals we are going to kill and eat, while millions of humans on Earth are starving!

Ultimately it just makes sense to care about animals and be compassionate towards them, because by doing so, that will also save our home, planet Earth. Okay, ‘Animal Rights’ is more than just being kind to bunny rabbits! So why not change something in your life today, to make life better for animals, yourself and the Earth?


I think it’s also really important that our kids – who are the adults and guardians of this planet in the future – get to engage in animal rights and environmental issues when they’re young. That’s why I’ve written Animals in the Forest: The Day Terrible Things Came, so our children can start thinking and acting for animals and nature, through reading a story (and the extra information included) about animals living through their own environmental crisis.

Get your copy here: Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com 


Sources and further reading:

http://www.collective-evolution.com/2013/03/04/eating-meat-destruction-of-environment/

http://www.culturechange.org/issue8/roadkill.htm

https://www.dosomething.org/facts/11-facts-about-factory-farms-and-environment

http://edition.cnn.com/2016/08/24/health/flexitarian-diet/index.html

http://www.iep.utm.edu/anim-eth/

https://www.peta.org/issues/animals-used-for-food/factory-farming/

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddrink/11118956/Surprising-food-thats-not-suitable-for-vegetarians.html

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2017/aug/10/bank-of-england-to-keep-animal-fat-in-banknotes-despite-complaints

https://www.thoughtco.com/how-many-animals-are-killed-each-year-127631

Picture credits:

https://pixabay.com/en/rally-march-protest-signs-2712259/

http://www.rabbitadvocacy.com/animal_rights_page.htm

Animals in the Forest – Audiobook Available Soon!

Thought I’d give you a head’s up – Animals in the Forest: The Day Terrible Things Came (already available as Paperback and e-Book) is going to be made into an Audiobook.

Once created, it will be available from Amazon, Audible and iTunes.

I’ve chosen an English native speaker to read the manuscript, in keeping with the story which is set in an English/European forest. The narrator and all the animal characters are holed up in her recording studio, reading the story aloud and creating those audio files!

I’m very proud and excited that this book will also be offered as an Audiobook, so that those who are unable to access the written versions will still be able to hear the story as well as the environmental themes and educational content embedded in the story.

In the meantime, get your Paperback or Kindle e-Book from:

 Amazon.co.uk     Amazon.com 

Update February 2018: The Audiobook is now ready! Get it from:

 Audible.co.uk or Audible.com 

Author Talks, School Visits, Writing Workshops & Book Signings

I do dynamic, interactive author talks, writing workshops, book readings and signings, visits and presentations to schools, homes, groups, etc.

I’m based in Hertfordshire UK, so am currently offering these within South East England (within reasonable distance). I am happy to come and visit your school/group, as long as my book(s) will be purchased either beforehand or at the same event. I will usually only charge a reimbursement of my travel costs (around £20), but this can be negotiated if you have a small group.

Suitable for any small or large groups, such as primary/secondary schools, home-schoolers/home education groups, Scouts/Guides, youth clubs, elderly homes, or any other clubs/groups.

Please contact me for more info.


Take a look at my books:

Animals in the Forest: The Day Terrible Things Came is available from:

 Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com  

Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves is available from:

 Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com 

New Children’s Sci-Fi Story with a Difference!

My latest book, Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves (published December 2017), is a fun children’s and young teens’ science fiction story with a difference.

Ilnoblet Elmer is an ordinary boy like any other.

Except for one thing. He’s from another planet – and his family, friends and teachers don’t know.

The story follows his adventures trying to defeat tricky and sticky aliens who come to Earth, wanting to interfere with him and create havoc. All in between him attending school and getting his homework in on time!

The story has lots of fun references to science, water, space travel, numbers and special words (you might not know it, but certain words have an interesting effect on aliens – you just have to know which ones), as well as two poems! There’s even a glossary to help with understanding his original language – you’ll be speaking it in no time!

Get Ilnoblet Elmer and the Alien Water Thieves in Paperback or e-Book from: Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com