Furthermoor is officially out!
Well, actually it came out on 3rd March. But I’ve only just scrabbled together enough time and energy to sit down and write this post. 3rd March was World Book Day, you see. This means I was running around like a caffeinated chicken not only for Furthermoor‘s launch events, but also for World Book Day events, which tend to take place on and around The Big Day itself. As a result, I had an intense but giddy fortnight of bookish malarkey.
But let’s get back to Furthermoor, the release of which was accompanied by a blog tour hosted by some wonderful bloggers.
Do visit these bloggers’ Twitter accounts, as you’ll find links there to their websites, where in turn you’ll find Furthermoor reviews, extracts and articles, along with a whole other slew of book-themed goodness.
I had the honour of being interviewed for Furthermoor‘s virtual launch party by the librarian-legend that is Alison Brumwell, and we had good times talking books and answering viewers’ questions. It was an very emotional night, topped off beautifully by flowers and a surprise Furthermoor cake from my wife and sons. Am I blessed or what!
And I’m chuffed to report that – thus far, at least – Furthermoor has been very well received. It was Blackwell’s Children’s Book of the Month (I kid you not – you can find the evidence here), a Waterstones best book for teens and young adults, a LoveReading4Kids Book of the Month, and a Peters Book of the Week. Blimey.
Here are a few snippets from early reviews:
‘Simpson is a compelling writer, his prose clear and muscular. He is acutely aware of generational behaviours, and of the cycle of deprivation that locks people into delinquency. He also has a marvellous sense of the uncanny. Children of ten and upwards will find much within this involving work to transport them.’
The Literary Review
‘The narrative is absorbing, tense and poignant, with real life challenges and concerns cleverly echoed in the magical world of Furthermoor … Furthermoor is a powerful book which addresses issues common to us all in a memorable way.’
Books for Keeps
‘Following twelve-year-old Bren who escapes the real world into an imaginary one after the loss of his sister, this dark and mesmerising novel from the author of The Memory Thieves imparts a powerful message of courage and self-confidence.’
Big thanks to all the kind people who’ve taken the time to read, review and shout out about Furthermoor – many of whom you’ll find in Furthermoor‘s acknowledgements and across my Twitter and Instagram posts. Support from readers, reviewers, teachers and librarians means so much to me, and frankly plays a massive part in keeping me writing. Heartfelt thanks also go to my agent, Laura Susijn; to my editor, Stephanie King; to Anna Kuptsova and Will Steele, Furthermoor‘s cover illustrator and designer; and to all at Usborne HQ – particularly Jessica Feichtlbauer and Hannah Reardon Steward, who worked so hard on Furthermoor‘s publicity campaign. A special shout out goes to the children and teens who’ve read Furthermoor and got in touch, created art or written reviews. It’s been incredible to see the book make such an impression on younger readers; it gives me hope that Furthermoor will help as many young people as it entertains. Here are a couple of examples of their amazing artwork:
During my fortnight of Furthermoor and World Book Day action, I visited a ton of schools and bookshops (special salute to The Rabbit Hole in Brigg), appeared on TV and – a personal highlight – ate an Easter egg filled with cheesecake.
On that astonishing thought, I’ll leave you with a selection of photos from my fortnight of frenzy. Until next time, stay safe and be nice.