Nick Clegg reads Ruby's Sleepover at Cutteslowe Primary School

Last week I joined my publisher, Barefoot Books, at a fundraising event for Cutteslowe Primary School in Oxford. What's more, we were visited by Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, who read Ruby's Sleepover to the children. It was a great occasion and fantastic to see him spend time with everyone. And he did a brilliant job of reading Ruby!

You can read more about the day over at the Barefoot Books blog. Or you can watch Nick Clegg in action in the video below...

Celebrating 20 years of Bookstart

Celebrating 20 years of Bookstart I travelled to Bath library and read Ruby's School Walk with a local nursery school and had the pleasure of being joined by some children visiting the library for books. After reading Ruby's School Walk, we coloured in some fab masks then Catherine Burrows our local Reading & Literacy Manager did some fun songs including crocodiles and other creatures.

Congratulations Bookstart on giving our new generations the best booky start ever.

My visit to Stonar to work with pupils on WW1 project

Here's what Stonar school had to say after my recent visit: 'In her fourth visit to Stonar children’s author, Kathryn White, came into school to work with all of Year 7 and 8 pupils on a joint English/History project. After having shown postcards and historical documentation from the First World War

'Kathryn asked the pupils to write their own versions attempting to create a real sense of historical realism. The pupils produced some excellent work in a stimulating and fun-packed morning.'

Getting into character at Blandford St Mary's Primary

Youngsters at Blandford St Mary's Primary dressed as their favourite storybook characters to give me a warm, enthusiastic welcome when I launched their new school library. The children designed some fab character masks from my books and we kicked off with a wonderful assembly filled with book quizzes, followed by a sneak preview of my new book, Ruby's Sleepover, which is due out on May 1st.

Thank you all for a wonderful day.

Picture by: by Jane Norman.  Blackmore Vale Magazine.

Able Writer's Day at North Denes Junior School

Take a look at these lovely book covers that the pupils created when I visited from North Denes Junior School. We created the Mystorical Adventure, as the children read with me, looked at characters, wrote the first chapter and made the book covers! Aren't they great?

Ruby's Sleepover

Ruby and Mai are camping out in the garden. As the night draws in, all sorts of scary characters head towards their tent. Luckily, Ruby has some magical objects in her rucksack, but will they be enough to keep the girls safe?

Read More

When Will it Snow?

Ages 3 to 7 yearsIllustrated by: Alison Edgson

“Winter is coming,” Mother Bear said. “We must snuggle down to sleep in our den.”

Little Bear doesn’t want to sleep! He wants to know what snow is like. His friends try to show him by making mud-balls and angels in the sand. But Little Bear knows that while he’s asleep his friends will have fun in the soft, white snow. Will they forget all about him?

Buy When Will it Snow? on Amazon

New books coming soon!

First of all, take a look at this young reader (a friend of mine's little one) getting stuck into one of my upcoming books, The Noisy Jungle, which will be published by Little Tiger Press.

It's always nice to see my stories in action!

The Noisy Jungle is one of three books I have coming out soon for children of all ages. The others are When Will It Snow?, also published by Little Tiger Press, and Beast Hunter, which will be published by A & C Black.

All three books will be out this Autumn, so keep your eyes peeled!

Also, don't forget that you can check out all my other books right here on my website.

Click Clack Crocodile's back chosen for Summer Reading Challenge

I had some wonderful news this week when I found out that my book, Click Clack Crocodile's Back, has been selected as part of this years' Summer Reading Challenge. The Summer Reading Challenge was developed to enhance children's reading by creating a fantastic atmosphere though events and activities around reading. The challenge is to read six or more of the selected books from your library over the summer holidays. Each year the theme changes. 2011 is 'Circus Stars'!

The Summer Reading Challenge is run by The Reading Agency through the summer holidays and takes place in 95% of British public libraries with over 750,000 children aged 4-11.

For more information visit the Summer reading Challenge Website:

A great day out at Stonar School

Earlier this month I had the pleasure of visiting Stonar School in Wiltshire, where I held one of my school visits. I had a fantastic time meeting and working with the children at Stonar, and was delighted to receive this wonderful feedback from Sophie Drew, who is in Year 9.

"We got the chance to read some of Kathryn's stories as well as write our own. Kathryn was very helpful and inspirational to us all and we would like to thank both her and the English department for such a great morning!"

Remember, if you'd like me to read and work with the children at your school, you can find more information on my Schools page and get in touch directly. I'd love to hear from you.

Martin Amis: ignorance is bliss?

Last week, Martin Amis said a few things about writing for children in an interview with The Guardian. This post is my take on his remarks. Reported in the Guardian on the 11th February, Martin Amis’s comments about writing for children:

"People ask me if I ever thought of writing a children's book,” "I say, 'If I had a serious brain injury I might well write a children's book', but otherwise the idea of being conscious of who you're directing the story to is anathema to me, because, in my view, fiction is freedom and any restraints on that are intolerable."

"I would never write about someone that forced me to write at a lower register than what I can write," he added.

There has been offence taken on this comment, quite understandably. However, I think that all Amis’s comments show is that he is ignorant in the area. Any writer would be dissuaded from taking on a project that could limit their freedom of expression and scope, which Amis assumes happens when writing for children.

I think JRR Tolkien, Roald Dahl and Rudyard Kipling, to name but a few, have produced work of amazing breadth and imagination for children that is of notable quality and will remain a part of our culture for years to come.

Writers, who write down to children, patronize and show no understanding of their audience, generally fail. Children of all ages are astute and at times painfully honest, more so than adults.

So I believe that Amis has merely shown ignorance and inexperience in the field of children’s books which is quite sad in this enlightened age.

Photograph: David Levene