We’ve been having wee recce at the Scottish titles due out over the next few months (from April to June). Here are the titles we are most looking forward to.
The Titanic Detective Agency, by Lindsay Littleson (Cranachan) – April 1
Hot on the hooves of Guardians of the Wild Unicorns (Lindsay Littleson’s first book of 2019) comes the story of Bertha Watts, who boards the Titanic at Aberdeen and sets out to solve the mysteries she finds on board – though she and the other passengers have no clue that disaster is looming. Lindsay Littleson has a track record for beautifully-told historical fiction and we can’t wait to see what unravels here. (Look out for a Roaring Reads chat with the author very soon.)
The Sea: exploring our Blue Planet, by Miranda Krestovnikoff, ill’ Jill Calder (Bloomsbury) – April 4
With a mixture of facts and stories about the world’s deepest seas and oceans, this picture book celebrates marine habitats and their remarkable creatures, including the blue whale. It’s written by conservationist Miranda Krestovnikoff, with illustrations by Scottish artist Jill Calder, and the gorgeously blue cover hints at more visual treats within (we especially love a picture of killer whales at sunset). With a key message about plastics, this looks set to be one for the whole family to treasure.
Crime Squirrel Investigators: the naughty nut thief, by Emily Dodd, ill’ Giulia Cregut (Little Door) – May 1
Rosie the squirrel’s secret nut store has been ransacked, and her best friend Charlie agrees to help her find the naughty nut thief. The crime squirrel investigators have only left over nutshells as a clue, so they watch how the three main suspects eat hazelnuts to try to solve the crime. Indy publisher Little Door may be small, but it has already produced several wonderful, warm and funny picture books, and this one promises the same – with a little bit of learning thrown in.
I am a Tiger, by Karl Newson, ill’ Ross Collins (MacMillan) – May 16
The mouse in this story thinks she is a tiger – and manages to convince a raccoon, a fox, a snake and a bird that this is the case, and that they are not what they think they are! But when a real tiger turns up, her powers of persuasion are really put to the test.
The Roaring Reads gang are already fans of Scottish illustrator Ross Collins – especially There’s a Bear in my Chair – and we can’t wait to read Karl Newson’s story, which sounds like it might have hints of the Gruffalo, so will be just up our street.
Help! I Smell A Monster, by Justin Davies, ill Kim Geyer (Orchard) – May 30th
When Alice is sent to stay with her Uncle Magnus, she discovers that his job agency isn’t quite normal – it helps monsters find work. When the Cyclops who is the castle pastry chef disappears, Alice smells something fishy. Can she sniff out the missing monster before it’s too late?
This debut story from Justin Davies has been compared to Pamela Butchart’s work, so we’re looking forward to plenty of giggles – and hoping we might have sniffed out a new Scottish talent to watch.
Evie and the Animals, by Matt Haig and Emily Gravett (Canongate) – June 6th
Evie has a super-talent – she can talk to animals and hear their thoughts. One day at school, she sets Kahlo the rabbit free from her too-small cage. It’s a good thing that lands her in big trouble, which is a problem when other animals start to really need her help. The stellar pairing of best-sellers Matt Haig and Emily Gravett is sure to produce something special and we can’t wait to meet Evie and her animal friends.