Monday, 3 October 2011

Squirrels and salmon: Reading at Cranmore Preparatory School

A squirrel: Not a character in my book (yet)
Into the wilds of Surrey (well, as wild as Surrey gets I suppose) to visit Cranmore Preparatory, a relatively new (founded in the 1960s) school near Effingham. The sun was particularly bright today, setting the scene for a bright day. It was a pleasure to meet the staff and pupils, who received me very warmly. I read two passages in their beautiful auditorium - one from The Other Book, in which Edward is chased underground by Mrs Phipps and Lady Anne, and is almost choked to death; and one from the beginning of The Liberators, in which Blackwood is, er, chased underground by a Liberator and a group of Acolytes. Do you sense a theme?

The boys asked some very pertinent questions (particularly about my fascination with squirrels), and I was treated to an excellent lunch of salmon before pottering off home to London. I'm sure school food wasn't like that in my day, back in the nineteenth century, when of course we were all fed on brimstone and treacle. I'd like to say an enormous thank you to the school for having me, and if they would like to offer me a pet squirrel, I wouldn't say no.

They've put me on their website here.

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