Tuesday, 8 January 2019

CONGRATULATIONS TO ANDY FRANKHAM-ALLEN!

To celebrate fifteen years as a professional publisher, Candy Jar's Lethbridge-Stewart series editor Andy Frankham-Allen is offering free stuff throughout 2019! His very first giveaway starts today with his very first professional piece of work: The Dead Man's Story.

The story was originally published by Big Finish in 2004 as part of Doctor Who: Short Trips - Repercussions and has been out of print since 2009!

To read The Dead Man's Story just follow the link below!


Thursday, 27 December 2018

ADVENT UPDATE!

Candy Jar Books has announced its final advent calendar freebies.

On Saturday the independent publisher gave away a brand new Lethbridge-Stewart story by Chris Thomas. Entitled Vampires of the Night this standalone tale focuses on Professor Travers’ World War II escapades.

On Sunday, Candy Jar gave away preview excerpts of the long-awaited sequel to the Reeltime straight-to-video Doctor Who drama, Downtime.

On Christmas Eve, it was the turn of Lethbridge-Stewart’s granddaughter, Lucy Wilson. Written by Tim Gambrell (author of the upcoming Laughing Gnome book, Lucy Wilson and the Bledoe Cadets) and Chris Lynch (author of the second Lucy Wilson novel, Curse of the Mirror Clowns) this one hundred page Christmas novel features malevolent Christmas crackers, and a timey-wimey anecdote inspired by Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol.


Tim Gambrell has been following the advent calendar and is excited to be included within its line-up. He said: “Shaun outlined his requirements in two words: Christmas crackers. Bang! The spark ignited and the whole thing came together very organically. Christmas is a time that focuses a lot on family, and I knew from the off that I wanted plenty of family character ‘moments’ in the story, leaving the threat to lurk in the background until its moment arose. Just be careful when you pull your crackers after lunch on Christmas Day!”

Chris Lynch is also thrilled that fans of Lucy Wilson can enjoy his take on her adventures during the Christmas holidays. He said: “Writing for Candy Jar this year has been an amazing experience. I can't think of a better way to see out my writing year than sitting in the shadow of my Christmas tree, sending Lucy and Hobo out into the universe once more.”

Christmas Day saw the biggest giveaway yet, with the complete three hundred and forty pages of the Doctor Who non-fiction book Companions: Fifty Years of Doctor Who Assistants written by Lethbridge-Stewart range editor, Andy Frankham-Allen.

Andy said: “When Shaun told me that Candy Jar would be giving away something every day for twenty-five days I thought he was mad. I said, “You’ll regret it by day seventeen”, and indeed he did. However, I do feel that he has pulled it off, just! To be honest, I have actually enjoyed many of the freebies, particularly the Eileen Younghusband documentary. So, I am really pleased that he has chosen Companions as the Christmas Day giveaway. It deserves to be out there again. For six months I watched every episode of Doctor Who, and the book, in my opinion, encapsulates what is great to be the Doctor’s best friend. And Christmas is certainly a good time to celebrate this.”

Since December 1st Candy Jar’s freebies have included The Xmas Files, the first chapter of God Bless Hooky Street: A Celebration of Only Fools and Horses, A Very Private Haunting, The New Unusual & The Man from Yesterday on Kindle, Lethbridge-Stewart-inspired Spotify lists, the complete Kangazang!: Remote Possibilties audio drama (read by Colin Baker), plus a variety of Lethbridge-Stewart short stories.

Keren Williams, who has recently been promoted to publishing coordinator at Candy Jar, explained the thinking behind the advent calendar: “It’s a Christmas tradition that we give away some short stories to our loyal readers, and this year I thought why don’t we go the whole hog and really spoil everybody? I feel that, despite Andy’s reservations, the giveaways have been successful. I have certainly received many emails from readers who have been looking forward to each day. Perhaps this is something we might repeat in the future. Time can only tell.”

Visit to http://www.candy-jar.co.uk/books/adventcalendar.html to see all the giveaways.

AN ANIMATED CHRISTMAS FOR TERRY!


In February this year our very own Terry Cooper was asked to produce drawings for S4C's Christmas film, Pluen Eira.

Every year, S4C make a seasonal film, and this year the story was about a young child who is placed with a new foster family. 

Frank's only joy is his comic collection, and when he's taken to spend Christmas on a remote farm, he's annoyed to discover that his comics haven't been packed. Bethan, a  young girl who lives at the farm, gives him some pencils and paper, and he begins to draw the adventures of a superhero called 'Pluen Eira' (Snow feather) – based on his life and inspired by a white turkey on the farm. 

Through the film, Frank's fertile imagination and drawings are shown coming to life via animated sequences. For this, Terry was briefed to draw Frank's thoughts and ideas – but in a simpler style befitting that of an eleven-year-old. 

Terry said: "While the live action filming was happening, I produced a large number of drawings, broken into separate parts for the ease of animation, and also a comic book that Frank has printed out in the film. It was  a very intensive few weeks, drawing through the night until daybreak, then picking up the next day's notes and brief in the morning to begin again. The film had some preview screenings in December, and was well received. It was aired on S4C on Christmas day at 6:30pm, in Welsh with English subtitles. I found it an interesting and fun job, and it really pushed me in terms of adopting a different style and providing the animation team with digitally drawn images that had the appearance of coloured pencils. I haven't seen it yet, but look forward to seeing my artwork come to life via animation."

We are very pleased for Terry at Candy Jar. He has been with us from the beginning and deserves this continuing success. Who knows what 2019 will bring?

Saturday, 8 December 2018

HAVE A CANDY JAR CHRISTMAS!


It’s Christmas time, the season of goodwill, and Candy Jar Books, the independent publisher of the popular Lethbridge-Stewart series, is entering into the spirit of things by releasing a special advent calendar. Every day until the 25th, Candy Jar will be giving away standalone Lethbridge-Stewart short stories, book samplers, wallpapers and more, completely free, on their website. 

Candy Jar have already given away the Lethbridge-Stewart short story collection The Xmas Files, a Cardiff ComicCon chapter from the children’s book The Book Spy, The Lucy Wilson Mysteries wallpaper for your computer, the first chapter of God Bless Hooky Street: A Celebration of Only Fools and Horses, the complete books Lethbridge-Stewart: A Very Private Haunting, The New Unusual, Lost in Chistmas by Michael Sloan (creator of The Equalizer) on Kindle, and a short story from Britain’s Got Talent’s Lorraine Bowen’s whimsical book The Crumble Lady. Candy Jar has also started its Christmas sale. Added to this, Candy Jar is offering all customers 20% off everything (except Downtime 2). And that’s just the first seven days.
Subscribers to Candy Jar’s newsletter will receive daily updates containing their prizes, but the calendar is available to everyone at www.candy-jar.co.uk/books/adventcalendar
Children’s Digital Assistant, Keren Williams, explained the thinking behind the advent calendar: “It’s a Christmas tradition that we give away some short stories to our loyal readers, and this year I thought, why don’t we go the whole hog and really spoil everybody? We have enough unseen material, as well as some hidden gems in our back catalogue, to fill Santa’s sack several times over. Whatever your tastes, and whether you’ve been naughty or nice, we have something just for you.”
With the Lethbridge-Stewart series about to enter its fifth year, Candy Jar wants to thank its loyal readership, who have supported the new adventures of the Brigadier since day one.
As Head of Publishing, Shaun Russell, explains: “In our series, the Brig has gone from a beloved, but somewhat forgotten part of Doctor Who history, to an alive and kicking, vital part of the ever-expanding canon. Here at Candy Jar, we’re fans first and foremost, and we’re forever grateful to our readers for embarking on this journey with us. We wanted to give a little something back to everyone who has helped make the series possible. We hope that it will make this a Candy Jar Christmas to remember!”
It’s Christmas time, the season of goodwill, and Candy Jar Books, the independent publisher of the wildly popular Lethbridge-Stewart series, is entering into the spirit of things by releasing a special advent calendar. Every day until the 25th, Candy Jar will be giving away standalone Lethbridge-Stewart short stories, book samplers, wallpapers and more, completely free, on their website.
Candy Jar have already given away the Lethbridge-Stewart short story collection The Xmas Files, a Cardiff ComicCon chapter from the children’s book The Book Spy, The Lucy Wilson Mysteries wallpaper for your computer, the first chapter of God Bless Hooky Street: A Celebration of Only Fools and Horses, the complete books Lethbridge-Stewart: A Very Private Haunting, The New Unusual, Lost in Chistmas by Michael Sloan (creator of The Equalizer) on Kindle, and a short story from Britain’s Got Talent’s Lorraine Bowen’s whimsical book The Crumble Lady. Candy Jar has also started its Christmas sale. Added to this, Candy Jar is offering all customers 20% off everything (except Downtime 2). And that’s just the first seven days.
Subscribers to Candy Jar’s newsletter will receive daily updates containing their prizes, but the calendar is available to everyone at www.candy-jar.co.uk/books/adventcalendar
Children’s Digital Assistant, Keren Williams, explained the thinking behind the advent calendar: “It’s a Christmas tradition that we give away some short stories to our loyal readers, and this year I thought, why don’t we go the whole hog and really spoil everybody? We have enough unseen material, as well as some hidden gems in our back catalogue, to fill Santa’s sack several times over. Whatever your tastes, and whether you’ve been naughty or nice, we have something just for you.”
With the Lethbridge-Stewart series about to enter its fifth year, Candy Jar wants to thank its loyal readership, who have supported the new adventures of the Brigadier since day one.
As Head of Publishing, Shaun Russell, explains: “In our series, the Brig has gone from a beloved, but somewhat forgotten part of Doctor Who history, to an alive and kicking, vital part of the ever-expanding canon. Here at Candy Jar, we’re fans first and foremost, and we’re forever grateful to our readers for embarking on this journey with us. We wanted to give a little something back to everyone who has helped make the series possible. We hope that it will make this a Candy Jar Christmas to remember!

OUR EIGHTH GIVEAWAY IS A SHORT STORY FROM THE WONDERFUL LORRAINE BOWEN BOOK THE CRUMBLE LADY. IT IS A WHIMSICAL COMEDY FOR ALL AGES!




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20% OFF EVERYTHING!*



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*EXCEPT DOWNTIME 2.

DOWNTIME 2
THE BRIGADIER AND KATE REUNITE!




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Thursday, 22 November 2018

CURSE OF THE MIRROR CLOWNS BOOK LAUNCH


Candy Jar Books is pleased to announce the official release of The Lucy Wilson Mysteries novel Curse of the Mirror Clowns.

Curse of the Mirror Clowns is written by Cardiff-based film and comic writer Chris Lynch. He feels that this book gives him the opportunity to tackle a personal fear.
 
The book launch takes place on Saturday the 24th November from 11 until 3 o’clock exclusively at Heroes, Aliens and Monsters Comics in Tonypandy, where a meet and greet with Chris will take place. Supporting the launch, author of Kangazang, Terry Cooper, will be joining Chris.
 
Chris says of Curse of the Mirror Clowns: "Did you ever think you saw something, just out of the corner of your eye? It happens to me all the time and it freaks me out quite a bit. So, when I got the chance to add my own monster to the Lucy Wilson universe, I knew it had to be a monster that you couldn't always see. I also wanted it to be a clown because, if there's something that freaks me out more than things I can't see then it's something I can see – clowns. Of course, that's not all I added – there are plenty of other surprises in there that I hope people will really enjoy. It's been great fun adding my own strange and spooky elements to Lucy's world and I hope to back very, very soon."
 
Illustrator and fellow author, Terry Cooper, often found impersonating Captain Jack Sparrow all over South Wales, is author of the science fiction trilogy Kangazang!, the third installment of which was recently launched at Cardiff Film and ComicCon. He will be there signing copies of the book and CD (voiced by Sixth Doctor Who Colin Baker).

The final instalment of the Kangazang! trilogy, Kangazang! Small Cosmoscontinues the adventures of Jeff and Ray as they find half of the galaxy has been taken over by a militaristic army of peanuts. Meanwhile, Jeff's newborn baby, a highly advanced cyborg, is growing exponentially with terrifying potential. And Marta Vina, the galaxy's top secret agent is sent on her most important mission of all...

Head of publishing Shaun Russell states that “There will be a range of books for sale on the day, but we also wanted to provide fans with a chance to ask the authors any questions they may have. Whether they’re about the writing process, the worlds they have created or what their favourite colour is!”
 
Open to all ages, the book launch is a one-time only event that you won’t want to miss!

Friday, 2 November 2018

RUN PHILIPPA RUN! HOW LOSING HER MP3 PLAYER MADE HER BECOME AN AUTHOR!

Since the London Marathon started in 1981, thousands of competitors have taken part. Going for a run is as much about your mind forcing your body out the door as it is about physical fitness. Overcoming these psychological barriers can make a difference between finishing the event or not.

Philippa Cates is no stranger to the mental and physical challenges of running, and has written a book about this wonderfully exhausting pastime. The Marathon celebrates this fantastic achievement, but also highlights in a comedic way the potential pitfalls of taking part. 
Philippa feels that runners can become very single-minded during their training, even turning down social events because "I've got a long run in the morning." But sometimes temptation can get in the way. She says: “A couple of years ago, I was given one of the comedy grown-up I-Spy books and I thought that I could apply this humour to marathon running. So, while I was training for the Virgin London Marathon in 2017, and struggling to keep myself going, I thought: what if a runner was presented with a number of temptations along the way. How would they overcome them?”
Philippa was emboldened to continue when she misplaced her MP3 player. She continues: “I was bereft! Often music can be a lifeline to a marathon runner, so for a while I felt like a boat without a paddle, and then I realised that the silence was a golden opportunity. That's when I started drafting The Marathon in my head." 
The Marathon is a cheeky, but family-friendly satirical short rhyming story accompanied by playful illustrations from the hugely talented artist come Jack Sparrow impersonator, Terry Cooper. The story follows our hero, Runner, as he takes on the gruelling business of training for and running a marathon. Not a natural athlete, and with a weakness for cake and socialising, Runner faces many distractions along the way. But will he complete his challenge? 
The book has been endorsed by Leanne Davies, founder of Run Mummy Run. She says: "This book is great fun! It is what training for a marathon is really like. The Marathon strikes a chord with the Run Mummy Run community."
Echoing the spirit of some of the most popular twenty-first century children’s picture books, this satirical spoof book is a clever hybrid between adult and children's book, and you don't need to be a runner to enjoy it. It’s a fun book for all the family with a slight anarchic twist.
The Marathon is available to purchase now at https://philippa-cates.my-online.store/ or via Philippa's website at www.philippacates.com.

Sunday, 28 October 2018

C’EST MAGNIFICQUE, HOOKY STREET!

Candy Jar Books is pleased to announce the release of God Bless Hooky Street, a comprehensive companion to the beloved TV series Only Fools and Horses. 

Only Fools and Horses is a national institution. From ‘Don’t be a plonker!’ to Del Boy falling through the bar, the rickety Reliant Regal to the smashing chandelier, its characters, storylines and sayings have entered the national culture in a way few sitcoms can claim. For good reason was it voted Britain’s favourite comedy in 2004, and the four Christmas specials and two spin offs that have followed in the years since its main series concluded are testament to its enduring popularity. 
Next up is the West End, with a musical due in 2019.
So, almost forty years after it first appeared on screen, it seems that there’s still life in the old dog yet. But what’s behind the show’s longevity? Just why is it such a classic? For the good of the British public, two men have taken it upon themselves to answer these questions, to return through the archives and pick apart this iconic show, episode by episode, special by special. It's a tough job, but somebody had to do it. And going the extra mile, and truly entering into the spirit of the series, they have decided to tackle this most nightmarish of tasks in that other great British institution – the pub! The premise is simple: discuss the show in minute, fan-boy detail, in a different pub for every series and special. These discussions are transcribed verbatim, capturing the easy flow of their conversation as they do what they do best — drink and discuss all things New York, Paris and Peckham.

But who are these mysterious men? None other than Grant Bull and Richard Colleran, a pair of ordinary blokes who’ve been fans of the show since day one. In witty, irreverent repartee, they cover the series from 1981 to its final special in 2003, discussing the hilarious pratfalls, poignant moments, and all the trivia and special touches that make the series so beloved.

As Grant says: “I’ve watched enough Only Fools and Horses to write a thesis; Richard has too. But we didn’t think an essay format would suit the feel of the show. A lot of its appeal resides in Rodney and Del Boy’s banter. Everyone’s local has a Del, someone with the chat, the charm, the dreams and the schemes. The pub helped us keep things snappy, chatty, sometimes a little bit sozzled, but most of all sincere.’

Richard adds: “This book has been three years in the making. Three years of us sitting down together and watching all sixty-four episodes of both our, and most might say, the nation’s favourite television show. Three years of analysing every minute detail, and discussing every thought we’ve ever had about the show. We would talk about how we related to the characters, we would quote the scenes we loved, we would dissect how the show changed from a political observation on Britain in the 1980s  to a ‘scam of the week’ sitcom to almost a comedy drama, but there was something else we recognised when we would talk about it. Unlike some other shows, we realised that this was a show we enjoyed watching with our families, both now and when we were children.”

Sure to delight aficionados, and an accessible guide for fans new to the show, God Bless Hooky Street’s boozy, matey back and fore, leavened with the occasional five-pints deep sentimentality, is a true match for the tone of the show. 
Genuinely informative, comprehensive, and hilarious in its own right, God Bless Hooky Street is destined to become the classic companion to this most classic of series.
God Bless Hooky Street is released on 22nd November 2018.

http://www.candy-jar.co.uk/books/godblesshookystreet.html

Friday, 19 October 2018

TWO OF OUR AUTHORS ARE FINALISTS IN THE NATIONAL PEOPLE’S BOOK PRIZE!


A North East based author of children’s literature is a finalist in the prestigious 2018 People’s Book Prize for The Book Spy. Mark Carton, from Newcastle, has been nominated as a finalist after 4 months of national public voting.

Also, London-based author Molly Arbuthnott has been nominated as a finalist for the 2018 People’s Book Prize for her heart-warming children’s book Oscar the Ferry Cat. 

The People’s Book Prize is the only national literature award decided upon entirely by the general public, therefore carries the additional credibility of being selected by the book’s own readers. The Children’s Literature Award has had several significant previous winners, including best-selling children’s author and TV presenter David Walliams for his first book Mr Stink; therefore making it a major stepping stone for first-time and emerging authors.

The Book Spy is Mark Carton’s second novel, and is a series of short stories spanning 80 years. It tells the tale of a secret children’s network of spies called the ‘Children’s Reading Intelligence Agency’ or ‘CRIA’. The Book Spies originated in World War II, set in Bletchley Park, with other stories taking place across the world – each featuring children from different generations. The stories recount the missions of children who are enlisted to join the CRIA and how they shaped world events, encouraging many children to engage in and enjoy reading.

Oscar the Ferry Cat was inspired by Molly Arbuthnott’s own family cat going missing in April 2014. The curious cat managed to open a car window by stepping on the control before the lock took full effect. The family returned to their car in Oban to find paw prints on the bonnet, but no cat. Beautifully illustrated by Agnes Treherne, young readers love following Oscar’s adventures.
The People’s Book Prize is a national competition, so The Book Spy and Oscar the Ferry Cat faced stiff competition with hundreds of titles nominated nationally this year by their publishers – as well as a long-list of 20 children’s books being put to the public vote.

Commenting on the finalist nomination for the award Mark Carton said: ‘I was delighted to get the initial nomination and having spent the early part of this year touring almost 40 schools in the North East with a ‘Book Spy Roadshow’, it was a real thrill to find out that I have been shortlisted as a finalist. The school visits showed the passion young people have for literature and great stories, and the purpose of The Book Spy is to encourage young people to share their love of reading. The school visits were wonderful, as the reception in every school was overwhelming.’

The Book Spy was published by Candy Jar Books, and head of publishing Shaun Russell commented: ‘Mark had a real passion for this story and the idea of the Children’s Reading Intelligence Agency was genius, as children love the idea of becoming spies in their own secret network. The book is a great read for 8-12 year olds and is a worthy finalist in these outstanding book awards. Everyone at Candy Jar is very proud of Mark and The Book Spy.’ The Book Spy has its own dedicated website www.bookspy.co.uk and Mark Carton has his own author site www.markcarton.co.uk which features his other work and his availability for author sessions.

Molly Arbuthnott is a primary school teacher from London. She has always loved writing and is thrilled to have been nominated as a finalist for The People’s Book Prize for her book Oscar the Ferry Cat. Agnes Treherne is a Sussex based illustrator who studied fine art at the University of Edinburgh, and provided the enchanting artwork to accompany Oscar’s story. Oscar the Ferry Cat has his very own website www.oscartheferrycat.co.uk . The story immortalizes the author’s beloved cat Oscar who was sadly never found. It follows his experiences as he navigates coming to terms with loss and forging new friendships. Proudly published by Jelly Bean Self-Publishing, this book appeals to children aged 5 – 8 years as it explores Oscar’s new living situation as he searches for his home.

On discovering her position as a finalist, Molly stated: ‘They say if you find a job you love you will not do a day’s work in your life. Every day for the last 6 months has felt like a holiday! It has been very humbling to witness the warm reception Oscar has received. I hope he will continue to touch the hearts of children – he’s against stiff competition but where there’s a will (and a cat!) there’s a way!’  

The People’s Book Prize winner will be announced in May 2019 following a further public vote, at the Stationers Hall in London, with patron of the foundation Frederick Forsyth CBE presenting the awards.

Sunday, 9 September 2018

A NEW BEGINNING FOR LETHBRIDGE-STEWART!

Candy Jar Books is proud to announce a new chapter in the adventures of Lethbridge-Stewart, Anne Travers, Bill Bishop and the men and women of the Fifth Operational Corps!

Beginning at the end of August 2018, the Lethbridge-Stewart range returns with a six-book series celebrating fifty years of the Brigadier. And with it comes a brand-new look for the range.

The new design was the brain child of head of publishing Shaun Russell and Will Brooks, known for his work on Titan Comics’ Doctor Who range, as well merchandise for the latest series of Doctor Who. Shaun says: “Andy (Frankham-Allen, range editor) and I have been discussing rebranding the books for some time now, and it seemed the anniversary range was the perfect time. New cover design, new logo, and I knew just the man for the job. We had worked with Will previously. His covers for Philip Martin’s Gangsters and Peter George’s Pattern of Death were outstanding, and we knew he would create the right look for us. And he didn’t disappoint!”

The artwork for Scary Monsters is by Lethbridge-Stewart artist Richard Young. He says: “This is my ninth cover for the Lethbridge-Stewart books, but the first one I've done as the lead book, so the stakes were raised for this. It's also the first cover to feature the Brig. I'd been pushing to feature him on a cover for years, and with this being the fiftieth anniversary of the character it felt like the time was right.”

Andy Frankham-Allen explains the umbrella-title, The Laughing Gnome. “We took our cue from Life on Mars and its sequel series, Ashes to Ashes, and opted for another David Bowie title for our very first time travel series of books. But we didn’t want it just be a title – we decided that we’d make the Laughing Gnome an integral part of the story, the catalyst for our heroes’ adventures in time. I don’t wish to give away the conceit of the series, but the basic premise is thus: Sir Alistair is nearing the end of his life and has just buried another old friend. Feeling out of sorts, he is somewhat surprised to find himself in 1981. Some mysterious force has pulled him backwards in time, into his own past, an adventure he has only vague memories of! As the series progresses we discover that both Anne Travers and her husband, and popular series regular, Bill Bishop, have also been dragged through time. But why? What, or who, is behind it?”

The first book in the series, Scary Monsters, is by Simon A Forward, who penned the 2016 Lethbridge-Stewart novel, Blood of Atlantis.

Simon says: “To be asked once to write for the Lethbridge-Stewart range is fortunate. To be asked twice seems like - what are they thinking? Letting me loose to play with these favourite characters again. Madness. Initially, I thought, well okay, but only if the right idea struck. And the next day the right idea struck me. To make life more challenging, this time it was more than merely contributing to a range. For the Brigadier's big anniversary year, Candy Jar outlined an ambitious arc to frame these adventures.”

Not only is it the first of the series, but if forms something of a sequel to Blood of Atlantis, with the return of popular character Grigoriy Bugayev and Señora Sophia Montilla. But Simon is keen to stress there’s more to it than that: “This is more than your average jaunt down memory lane and it's about much more than introspection and reflection.
My book sees the Brigadier and friends confronting terrorism in an international thriller that, while rooted in the past - and in the Doctor Who universe - should carry some resonance in the 21st century. And not just for the Brigadier.”

Blurb:
1981: London, a bomb detonates in a London pub and Brigadier Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart is among the injured. Moscow, a hijacked plane sits on the airport runway and Major Grigoriy Bugayev leads the assault against the six gunmen holding the passengers hostage.

These are the triggers that set the two military men on an international manhunt. Their investigations converge and uncover a group of terrorists whose roots reach back to sinister Cold War experiments, and something that was unearthed in ancient ruins in the New Mexico desert by one Sophia Montilla… and Anne Travers.

Terror is a contagion. It means to spread. And humanity is set on doing everything in its power to help it…

 
NB: IF YOU HAVE A SUBSCRIPTION THE LAUGHING GNOME SERIES IS COVERED BY THIS.

The Laughing Gnome: Scary Monsters is available for pre-order now for £8.99 (+ p&p). The book is released at the end of August.

http://www.candy-jar.co.uk/books/scarymonsters.html

Tuesday, 14 August 2018

Carry On Star Angela Douglas Releases Debut Novel


Award-winning independent publisher Candy Jar Books is delighted to announce the upcoming publication of the debut novel by Carry On actress, Angela Douglas.

Josephine: An Open Book is a powerful and compelling story of a young woman’s journey to stardom and the trials and tribulations of showbusiness and celebrity. Set against the backdrop of London’s 1960s, her paths cross with the likes of Kirk Douglas, Steve McQueen Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn and Neil Armstrong.

Though a work of fiction, the novel draws extensively on Angela Douglas’ own experiences, weaving a story which is at its very heart, universal in its themes: love, loss, the breakdown of a marriage and the decline of health. Josephine is ultimately an uplifting memoir of determination and conviction in the face of adversity, and is sure to resonate with the reader.
Angela Douglas is best known as an actress and for her roles in the iconic Carry On feature film series. Throughout the 1960s and ’70s she made numerous appearances in theatre, film and television, including the iconic series: The Avengers, The Saint, Z-Cars, Dixon of Dock Green, Doctor Who, Holby City and Coronation Street.

In 1962 she met the British movie icon, Kenneth
More. They fell in love and married in 1968, remaining together until More’s death in 1982.
In 1988 she met acclaimed director and playwright, Bill Bryden. They married in 2009.
Josephine is Angela’s first work of fiction, having already worked as a journalist and author, writing two non-fiction titles, including her autobiography Swings and Roundabouts, which received great praise from audience and critics alike.
Angela in Carry On Cowboy
As Angela put it herself, Josephine’s life is set in a world she knows well:
“I have described Josephine as ‘made up truth’. Many of the characters with whom Josephine meets are famous names because they are lifted from real-life experiences of my own. Josephine and I share many things, but there are also many differences... She is very much her own woman, and she finds herself in a lot of scrapes and circumstances, which I luckily did not. Josephine is an ambitious, fiercely independent bundle of energy who never settles for less than she deserves. As her father says: “when she was little she tried to ride the rainbow. Her ambition was up high….her reality was at times down there.”
What parts of Josephine’s life are based on truth and what are a work of fiction? That’s what you’ll have to determine for yourself…”
Candy Jar’s Head of Publishing, Shaun Russell, explains the book’s rare appeal:
Josephine has so much for a reader to enjoy. There’s the genuine insight into life of an aspiring young actress, struggling for expression and self-fulfilment in an industry often more interested in exploiting such ambition; a timely theme if there ever was one, and based on life. And most of all, an emotionally honest, compelling, and moving central story. That’s at the heart of everything: Josephine herself, a strong, vivacious woman won’t settle for the life she’s been given, but instead shoots for the moon. Does she make it? You will have to find out…”

Friday, 13 July 2018

COMPETITION WINNER ANNOUCED!

Obvious Photoshopped image of Sean Alexander
Candy Jar Books is pleased to announce the winner of the Lethbridge-Stewart Short Story Competition. The winning story, Boys Don’t Cry, is written by Sean Alexander from Holyhead, north Wales.

Shaun Russell, head of publishing at Candy Jar, says: “Sean has written a touching and heartfelt short story. His take on the Brig was unique amongst the entries. His story is set at Brendon School where the Brig has to uncover the truth about an awful tragedy.

Andy Frankham-Allen, range editor of the Lethbridge-Stewart series of books, agrees: “Boy’s Don’t Cry is a wonderful little tale of life in Brendon, and we picked it because it showed a great understanding of the Brigadier, as well as the author displaying a knack for writing great prose. Add to that, the setting is one we’ve wanted to further explore in the main range, so as part of the winning prize, I’ll be working with Sean Alexander on developing another tale of Brendon School which will serve as a back-door pilot for a possible new range of novellas.”

Sean Alexander says: "In true Doctor Who producer style, I'm surprised and delighted to be chosen as the winner of Candy Jar's short story competition! Opportunities like this are few and far between, so my heartfelt thanks to Shaun and Andy for selecting me. I look forward to our collaboration on a brand new Lethbridge-Stewart novella later in the year. Splendid fellows, both of them!"

The book also features eight other exclusive short stories featuring Lethbridge-Stewart at various stages in his life. This is a chance for fans to see the Brigadier like they’ve never seen him before!

The eight stories are:
The Stranger Paradox by Thomas Firth
Soldier in Time by Martin Gregory
Burning Daylight by Paul Chase
The Brigadier Rides Again by Ross Hastings
In Machina Exspiravit by Anthony Robertson
Special Responsibility by Gary Tinnams
Shadows in the Glen by Richard Brewer
The Man with the Red Case by Matthew Ball

The idea for the Lethbridge-Stewart Short Story Competition came from the company’s commitment to shedding light on fresh writing talent. Since 2015 the Lethbridge-Stewart novels have championed previously unknown authors such as Jonathan Macho and Gareth Madgwick, alongside famous writing names in the Doctor Who universe including John Peel, Nick Walters, Simon A Forward and David A McIntee.

All royalties from each book will be donated the Velindre Cancer Centre in Cardiff. Shaun, who received chemotherapy treatment at the centre, says: “In 2015 I was diagnosed with bowel cancer, just as we were launching the first Lethbridge-Stewart series. As you can imagine, undergoing six months of treatment was physically and emotionally draining. If it wasn’t for the support of the centre I wouldn’t have got through this difficult time. This is my way of giving something back.”

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

KEREN WILLIAMS JOINS CANDY JAR



Candy Jar is delighted to announce a new addition to their team. Keren Williams joins the company in a newly created role: Children’s Digital Assistant.

In this capacity, Keren will be combining editorial, marketing and administrative responsibilities in relation to Candy Jar’s ever-expanding roster of children’s literature, as well as assisting in the expansion of the company’s self-publishing imprint, Jelly Bean. She brings to the role a lifelong passion for children’s literature, with her two favourite children’s novels being J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan and Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

Candy Jar’s head of publishing, Shaun Russell, explains about Keren’s new position:

‘Keren joined us for a work experience placement while completing her master’s degree. We were struck by her energy and enthusiasm, as well as her insightful comments, particularly in regards to one our new children’s titles, The Lucy Wilson Mysteries: Curse of the Mirror Clowns. For those who don’t know, this is a children’s spin off of our Lethbridge-Stewart range, and not only did Keren improve the book editorially, but tasked with marketing it, she managed to introduce the book to a swathe of new reviewers and readers. That was when we realized she had the insight, practicality and creativity we needed to push our children’s range to new levels.’

With a range of recently and soon-to-be released children’s titles, including Lost in Christmas (by Hollywood institution Michael Sloan) and The Bonkers Book of Jobs (an irreverent look at the weird and wacky world of work), Keren is sure to have her hands full right away. But it is a challenge she is relishing:

‘The best thing about indie publishing is you get to pitch in on all sides of things – everyday is a new challenge, which keeps things interesting. Candy Jar, I mean we have got a lot of fun stuff in the pipeline, and I can’t wait to get stuck in.’

Candy Jar Books is an award-winning independent publisher based in Cardiff, south Wales. It’s partner imprint, Jelly Bean Self-Publishing, is a quickly expanding player in the booming UK self-publishing market.

Monday, 18 June 2018

MEET THE CRUMBLE LADY IN PERSON!

THE BOOK SPY


Newcastle-based author, Mark Carton, has written a book to address the lower levels of literacy amongst young people. The Book Spy tells the remarkable story of the greatest spy network of all time, The Children’s Reading Intelligence Agency – a fictional organisation created to protect stories from all around the world.


Former Radio 1 Roadshow events manager, Mark, has invented an authentic back-story to encourage children, especially boys, to reach for a book. From the early 1940s at Bletchley Park to modern day south Wales, The Book Spy highlights the crucial work done by CRIA operatives. This is not MI5 or the CIA, but a network of children discovering important books from around the globe, and bringing them back to the United Kingdom. The book reveals how Book Spies helped to defeat the Nazis during World War II, saved an endangered species, and foiled an evil genius’ secret plot.
Mark says: “I wanted to create something that would fuel the imaginations of children and encourage them to read by introducing the prospect of becoming a real-life Book Spy.”
The Book Spy, which has been shortlisted in the People’s Book Prize, proudly teaches children about the most powerful weapons in life, books. Shaun Russell, head of publishing at Candy Jar Books, says: “Mark has written a variety of stories for us at Candy Jar Books, including a Doctor Who spin-off story Lethbridge-Stewart: 48 Crash. We truly believe that his Book Spy concept, which encourages children to read, has the potential to be used by every school in the country.”




https://peoplesbookprize.com/books/the-book-spy/

According to information provided by The Reading Agency analysis shows that in England 16 to 24 year olds have lower levels of literacy than young people in 21 out of 24 countries in the OECD. Literacy levels are higher in Japan, Estonia, Czech Republic and the USA.
Research also shows that reading for pleasure can reduce the symptoms of depression, build empathy and help us build relationships with others. Mark continues: “I feel that reading can also create a shared comradeship and our website has been designed to reflect this.”
Unlike other children’s book review websites The Book Spy actively encourages children to write (or record) their own reviews, upload them and share with their peers.
The Book Spy is published by Candy Jar Books, and priced at £6.99, it is available from candyjarbooks.co.uk, Amazon and all good retailers.#