The story I’ve been working on this year, School for Skylarks, is finally here!

It’s 1939, the outbreak of the blitz, and young Lyla Spence has been torn from her Mother’s home in London and taken by her Father to Furlongs, the large and mysterious country home of her Great Aunt Ada. Lyla, who has never known a friend nor been to school, and whose parents have been at the centre of a scandalous divorce, is an angry, lonely child – lonely that is, until an entire school of girls suddenly arrives at Furlongs and turns her world inside out…

The moment the story you’ve lived with for so long is about to turn into a printed book always makes me a little uneasy. Maurice Sendak wrote about what it’s like to give birth to a book: ‘And then it goes out into the world, and your child, who was so private and who was living with you for two years, now its everybody’s child …’

In other news, I’m currently working on a new book. All I will say is that it includes a horse …

Best wishes,


Latest Book

School for Skylarks

It is 1939. When Lyla is evacuated from her home in London to her great-aunt’s enormous house in the West Country, she expects to be lonely. She has never been to school nor had any friends, and her parents have been at the centre of a scandal. But with the house being used to accommodate an entire school of evacuated schoolgirls, there’s no time to think about her old life. Soon there is a horse in a first-floor bedroom and a ferret in Lyla’s sock drawer, hordes of schoolgir …

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Posted on 25/05/17

Young Quills Shortlist 2017

The House on Hummingbird Island has made the Young Quills Shortlist this year! The Young Quills competition allows young …

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