Multi award winning children’s author Ali Sparkes is in York in February to launch her latest children’s comedy adventure - My Sister Is A Dog - published by Stairwell Books.
The author, whose novel Frozen in Time won the Blue Peter Book of the Year Award and whose Shapeshifter series is currently in development with the BBC, will visit schools and bookshops in the city.
‘I’m really thrilled My Sister Is a Dog will find its way into schools, libraries and bookshops this year,’ says Ali, whose labradoodle Willow was the inspiration for the shaggy main character in the story.
‘I’m really thrilled My Sister Is a Dog will find its way into schools, libraries and bookshops this year,’ says Ali, whose labradoodle Willow was the inspiration for the shaggy main character in the story. ‘And having my publishers based here was a great excuse to come back to the beautiful city of York and visit some schools in the area - something I’ve not done since pre-pandemic times.’
Ali will share the background and inspiration to the book, in which a lively labradoodle has to convince the boy next door that she used to be his sister. ‘It’s a comedy adventure,’ says Ali. ‘With a lot of it seen through the eyes of a dog who used to be a human. There’s an element of sadness in it, too - but very light touch. Mostly it’s about the kind of joy and love - and madcap quests - that dogs bring into our lives. ‘It also plays with the idea of reincarnation, which I’ve always found fascinating.’
Ali is one of a growing number of high-profile authors increasingly working with indie presses like Stairwell Books. ‘I still write for my mainstream publishers, like Oxford and Harper Collins,’ she says. ‘But certain passion projects won’t fit into the mainstream and that’s when partnering with bold and imaginative indies like Stairwell really works well.’
Stairwell’s Rose Drew adds: ‘We began our work with York-based writers and then discovered that established writers with great profile were also interested in what we could offer. They love our passion for publishing genuinely original work and appreciate the level of collaboration they can have.’
EDITORS: For more information and to set up an interview with Ali, please contact Rose Drew at Stairwell Books via firstname.lastname@example.org or on 07914 271871