The Orchard Underground hits the shelves of your very favourite bookshop on 1 May 2018 and, I hope, the shelves of your very favourite house where you live very shortly after that.
When I was a kid, there were only two shops that interested me:
- the Eastland Brashs record store where I bought my first vinyl record (a typically edgy, experimental concept record that baffles and fascinates musicologists to this day), and
- the Collins bookshop next door.
I don't remember precisely which cover it was, or exactly how old I was, although it may have been a Judy Blume, or maybe an Anne McCaffrey, and I'm pretty sure I was around eight. But the realisation I had is crystal clear.
Standing in Collins Eastland, staring up at a book on a shelf, it suddenly occurred to me that the name on the cover was the name of a person who had written this story, and now I could, if I saved up the $4.50, read it.
And all I could think was: I want to have a book with my name on it on a bookshop shelf one day.
I'm not even going to put a number to how many years have passed since then for fear of attracting the attention of archaeologists, but it's been a long journey from there to May 2018, so I want to celebrate in style.
You are invited to Readings Kids at 2pm on Saturday 12 May 2018 to help the wondrous Leanne Hall launch my debut novel, The Orchard Underground. I'll read from the book and sign frankly anything that passes in front of me.
For all the details, see my Facebook invite. I'd love to see you there.