On the first day of Bookfest 2019 in Bucharest, I had an audience to talk about my book A Stake in Transylvania. This is how much I enjoyed it.
Thanks to Bookfest’s clever photographer…
And at the very end of the day, as a very unexpected bonus, the British Ambassador introduced me to one Klaus Iohannis, President of Romania. And to my great surprise, he recognised me… “Is it possible that I’ve seen you in a documentary?” he asked. “It’s possible,” I replied. Here’s the evidence (the Prez is the tallest in the line-up)
Kids from Class 3 at School 169 check to see how they feature in Dalia’s Pet Detectives, at Bookfest
Booklet Fiction’s cat, who was both Winston and Dalia’s cat Onyx.
Kids from Federico Lorca school learning about Dalia and her pet detectives during Bookfest 2018
Following on from Bucharest’s spring fair Bookfest, I wrote the cover feature for OZB magazine.
I plan to write more, to give an airing to various aspects of Romania’s book world – not just to give readers a better idea of how much value they get for their 40 lei, but to spot opportunities in the publishing world and to highlight good practice and book world stars. What do you think of the article? I’d love to read your candid comments.
‘My’ stand at Booklet Fiction, Bookfest 2018
Cats were the face-painting theme of the day
Dahlia’s Pet Detectives (Dalia si micii detectivi) will be in the spotlight at the end of next week (Thursday 31st May, Friday 1st and Saturday 2nd June) when my new book is launched at Bucuresti’s Bookfest (Romexpo).
If you read Floss the lost puppy, you’ll recognise the village of Fân (Hay) where Dahlia and Chip are neighbours and schoolmates of Thea and Tudor Thimble. A completely new story, but set in the same Transylvanian village, high up in the Carpathian Mountains.
I have a Pinterest board devoted to pictures of cats like Onyx, and crows like Gossip. So you can see what Dahlia’s friends look like as you read their adventures…
I’ll be waiting to meet you on the Booklet Fiction stand on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at midday, ready to sign your copies. Come and say hello!
Read more about Dahlia and her friends here!
That’s the plan… I should be with the Romanian Cultural Institute on 10th April to launch their LBF event at 1pm in the Olympia venue – and again that evening at Waterstones Gower Street. Have a look at the event link here.
But will I make it? I’m waiting to hear from my housesitters, due to arrive in Romania today to look after my animals while I’m away. But there’s no word tonight, and I’m feeling very twitchy…
What happens if they don’t turn up? Do I leave the animals untended, to be fed by neighbours? Do I not go to London? What would you do?
Another little TV slot – this time on Kanal D – which has brought some more enthusiastic Romanians to my digital door. Thank you, Kanal D!
I love the caption to my silliest photo (can you see I’m typing in ski mitts?): “She gave a kingdom for a Romanian hamlet.”
George Cat, Papi Dog, my neighbour Georgi and her two cows all appear. Let me know what you think…
Beautiful TV presenter Ioana Mihalca and her expert crew came to see me in Magura last month, and made a charming 8-minute film from their afternoon’s visit. They also talked to my neighbour Roxana, and my friends from Zarnesti, Dan and Luminita Marin.
The resulting film was broadcast on the show Bonton at the end of November.
What do you think?
I’m donating royalties from my new book, Floss the lost puppy, to two fabulous animal charities here in Romania.
Every book you buy will help save a dog (or a cat) that is homeless, sick or injured.
Romania Animal Rescue is an amazing group of vets at the Centre of Hope in Bucharest – see what they do every day to save dogs and cats.
Eli Pet Transport is a Romanian-British charity that rescues dogs from all over Romania, socialises them till they’re ready for a new home, then takes them to the UK to their new families.
All the people involved are stellar human beings who have devoted their lives, their homes, their careers to the welfare of cats and dogs.
If you love animals, buy a book, donate direct to their websites, spread the word about what they do, teach kids about the value of pets and how to care for them – help in any way you can…
PS: You can find out more about Floss on his website, and read reviews of the book here.
The latest Floss review came in today, from Alex Tatulescu who lives near London. I hope you can read the image – it’s so nice to read his letter as he wrote it.
In case the image isn’t quite clear enough, you can read his review here.
And yes, Alex, I’ve already started the next book. It’s set in the same village, but it’s a very different story! Funny, and a bit bonkers, with some proper baddies. I don’t know when it will be published, but keep your fingers crossed!
I’d love to see you! I’ll be on Booklet Fiction’s stand at Romexpo from midday on Friday 24th, and at lunchtime on Saturday, too. Come and say hello, and get your books signed.
A perfect Christmas story, set in the mountains near Brasov. A bilingual edition, so a great read for Romanian and English-speaking kids aged 7+.
Readers of all ages love the book – read some reviews!
Iulia Benze sent us a wonderful review. Obviously a great dog lover, Iulia sees the book as a way of teaching a vital lesson: why compassion and care for animals is important.
“I believe Floss The Lost Puppy is extremely practical and it should be the beginning of a series which humanizes stray animals, creating heartfelt stories, educating people to be more compassionate towards nature and fellow creatures sharing their environment.
“Overwhelmingly the book brought back memories of animals in distress. I read it on a stormy dark Sunday morning and after that I immediately went out and started searching for homeless dogs to feed and to soothe. I found 5, managed to help 3 – the ones who didn’t run away from me.”
But Iulia also remarked on the emotional journey that the heroine goes through.
“I loved her journey in that magical rural mountainous place: from being afraid of dogs to absolutely loving them. She became a brave little girl, sacrificing her own comfort and selfishness. I think it is a very important lesson to learn: generosity, friendship and conquering your fear. This story contains a deep challenging lesson, making the narration not only for children, but also for adults.”