Report by Ryan Campbell and Zach Patchias, 8 Hope
On Tuesday 24 February, ourselves and several other pupils from Reading Club were lucky enough to have the privilege of attending a book signing with award-winning author of a vast expanse of highly successful historical fiction books, Paul Dowswell.
This opportunity complimented our Super Reads Challenge very nicely, as Paul’s latest book, Red Shadow, is one of the six books shortlisted for the Super Reads Award, and in our opinion, a strong contender for the win!
The day began with an excursion to Maghull Library, departing at 12.00. Paul then gave a presentation of around an hour and a half in length, outlining how and where from he seeks his inspiration for his books. We were all very interested by the fact that Paul actually visits the places his books are set in. His most recent book, Red Shadow, led him on an adventure to Moscow, where he visited the Kremlin, Lenin’s Tomb and Red Square, setting the scene for this tale of loss, fear and espionage in Stalin’s communist Russia. He showed us images of the Russian train station and explained about the beautiful art he viewed in the gallery. This day proved an educational event with some different views on how to put life into perspective. In Russia if a lone tourist is spotted by the police then they are asked for their passport. If you cannot present this to them a bribe of $20 will be required to send them on their travels. This was a shock as here you are just left in peace to view what you wish as long as you obey the laws!
Paul allowed time for questions at the end of the presentation, with questions ranging from ‘which is your favourite out of all the books you have written?’ to ‘how long have you been writing?’
A vast array of Paul’s books were on sale at a discounted price and he was then kind enough to sign these for each one of us.
A thoroughly enjoyable day was had by all and we would both like to take this opportunity to thank our LRC Manager, Mrs Clarke who made it possible for us to take part in this fabulous experience; Paul Dowswell for taking time out of what we’re sure is a rather hectic schedule to speak to us; and Maghull Library for nominating themselves as the venue for such a fantastic and enjoyable day.
This day was a great experience to have been a part of as it proved a motivational and inspirational way to learn the tricks to writing book and how to source your ideas to create the plot of your story.