Lockwood wins WeRead Award!!

I’m delighted and highly chuffed to say that The Screaming Staircase has won the WeRead prize 2014. The award was announced at a ceremony at University College School in Hampstead, London this afternoon. What’s great about the prize is that it’s entirely voted for by young readers from many schools, many of whom were at the event today. I’d arrived earlier and, like several of the other shortlisted authors, did a talk about my books, before going to the splendid Great Hall to hear the announcement. I was so surprised I barely knew what to say, but I’m thrilled at being awarded such a fine prize. For more about WeRead, which is co-sponsored by one of the great children’s bookstores, Tales on Moon Lane, check out its website at
Me, I’m off for a celebratory evening ice-cream…

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Two Public events in July!

Come and meet me at upcoming public events in the UK!

As part of a UK tour to promote the paperback release of The Screaming Staircase, I will be on the road visiting schools and bookshops in the South East of England. There are two public events open to any mumbers of the public who would like to meet me, hear more about Lockwood and get a book signed.


BURY ST EDMUNDS, SUFFOLK: Friday 11th July,16.00 – 17.30
Waterstones Bury St Edmunds (36 Buttermarket, Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk, IP33 1DW)
A drop-in book signing session, informal, please do turn up or for more information call 0843 2908197.

LONDON: Saturday 12th July, 13.15 – 15.15 & 15.30 – 16.15
YALC, London Excel centre (Earls Court) (part of Film and Comic Con)
The first ever UK literary convention for young adult books exclusively – and I’m on the programme! I’ll be taking part in a panel event called ‘Bring Me My Dragons’ alongside Ruth Warburton, Amy McCulloch, Frances Hardinge and chaired by Marc Alpin on Saturday 12th July at 3pm. I’ll also be doing a signing session from 1.15pm to 3.15pm.
If you buy a ticket to my event you also get a pass to the whole London Film and Comic Con – a world of fantasy, graphics and stories to explore!

For programme information and to buy tickets see: http://www.childrenslaureate.org.uk/yalc/yalc-schedule/

For a guide on which tickets to buy see this helpful blog from Hot Key Books:
http://www.hotkeyblog.com/through-the-keyhole-july-yalc-takeover/

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Lockwood is Waterstones’ Book of the Month!

I’m THRILLED to announce that The Screaming Staircase UK paperback will be Waterstones’ Children’s Book of the Month for July! This promotion means the book will be right in front of shoppers’ eyes as they buy their summer holiday books, and it also means I’ll be back on the road visiting schools across the South East on a tour set up with Waterstones branches. I can’t wait.

Waterstones are a bastion of reading in the UK, and I’m delighted that they’re featuring Lockwood in this way. As a reader I’ve spent many happy hours browsing in their bookstores, and I’ve lost count of the number of amazing events I’ve done with them over the years. And I’ve heard that some of the stores will be creating special Lockwood window displays. Who knows what gruesome scenes of ghouls, cobwebs, rapiers, chains and iron filings they’ll create… If anyone reading this sees one of the displays do please tweet me a photo via @JonathanAStroud.

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News - Costa Prize Judging!

Summer’s here, and there are two bits of fantastic news to celebrate. The first is that I’ve at last finished the final copyedits and proof-reads for The Whispering Skull. It’s off being printed right now. I’ve seen the (beautiful) galley copy for the US edition, but I can’t wait to see the real thing this September. UK and German editions are also out this autumn.

The other great announcement is that I’m going to be one of the judges for this year’s Costa Book Awards. It’s one of the top literary prizes in the UK, awarded every year in various categories. I’ll be one of the three judges for the 2015 Children’s Prize. I’m looking forward to this, partly because of all the truckloads of books that’ll be coming my way over the next couple of months, but mainly because it will give me the chance to enjoy the very best children and young adult fiction out there. There’s more brilliant stuff being written now than ever before - and I’m going to help select the very best of this year’s crop… Should be a very enjoyable summer! I’ll keep you posted with how I get on…

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Central London - no ghosts currently in view

Central London - no ghosts currently in view

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A final flourish with Ridley Pearson

A final flourish with Ridley Pearson

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The Book Awards reception

The Book Awards reception

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In an unaccustomed suit at the LA Times Book Awards

In an unaccustomed suit at the LA Times Book Awards

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Los Angeles

The final stop of my tour was at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books. I pitched up late on the Friday, dashed to the hotel, flung on a suit and tie (shipped to LA for the purpose) and zoomed off to attend the LA Times Book Award ceremony, where Lockwood was shortlisted in the Young Adult category. It didn’t win - that honour went to Gene Luen Yang’s stunning looking Boxers and Saints - but it was a great occasion, with John Green getting an Innovation award, and all kinds of masterful books being celebrated. And I got a chance the following morning for a final event - with D J MacHale and my old buddy Ridley Pearson - before drifting slowly to the airport for the last long flight home.

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Signing Lockwood at TLA

Signing Lockwood at TLA

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TLA Annual Conference

My mission in San Antonio was to take part in the Texas Library Association Annual Conference - I was part of the line-up in two panel events: one on Other Worlds - writing fiction for teens, and the other on The Graveyard Shift - penning scary stuff. Both panels were packed with excellent and interesting speakers and peppered with questions from the vastly knowledgable audience. As always I came out of the events wishing I’d read more and vowing to devour more books in future. One book I HAVE just read, which I picked up at San Antonio airport, is Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood, which was gripping, gruelling and mesmerisingly well-written. Scarier than fiction too.

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Surely a house needing investigating by Lockwood & Co…

Surely a house needing investigating by Lockwood & Co…

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O.Henry’s House

O.Henry’s House

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The Alamo

The Alamo

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The river-walk in San Antonio

The river-walk in San Antonio

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