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Saturday, April 20, 2024
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Shropshire author sees fifth children’s book published

It looks like a bright future with the release of a new chapter book by a Shropshire author.

Local author Roy Bradshaw
Local author Roy Bradshaw

Seven resplendent chapters, over 33,000 words of indulgence with humour in parts and adventure in others, tell different glowing stories of a mole obsessed with finding shiny things – all linked to a common theme.

Marti-Rye the Mole has a Shiny Week (with Friends and HIS Munificent Monocle) is the fifth children’s book published by Roy Bradshaw following on from three books in the Barley’s Biscuit and one in the Mr. B’s Busy-Bea popular series.

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Roy, from Madeley, a supply teacher in the primary sector, was inspired for the characters and setting by people living in and around a picturesque little village in Shropshire.

“I tend to listen quite intently when chatting with people, especially local people and ones I consider as friends. I like to observe their mannerisms, without being obtrusive, and this often forms the broad basis of a character for a children’s story in my mind – it could be something as simple as a name mentioned or indeed just a place! In this book, the setting is based on a piece of wasteland I would often pass on my walks through Shropshire. There were always lots of mole hills on it, so I adopted it as Mulch Meadow,” said Roy.

“The names of the characters and places representing Marti-Rye and his friends are derivatives of people and areas I know well and lends a little local interest to the stories, but the village could be anywhere in the world,” he added.

“Marti-Rye the Mole lives in a large underground home he calls The Verano. ‘It’s dark in there, damp and a bit smelly.’ One early Sunday evening in June, he chances upon a monocle with a special property – it gives sight… but only to him. He finds a cut-off tin lid shining in the setting sun and this starts his obsession with shiny things. In the following week, he has to, (has to, I say) find a shiny thing each day… The Verano compels him to!

“Each day represents a different adventure for Marti-Rye and a number of his friends. He’ll do anything to own a shiny thing he spots when out looking. His friends can hardly see anything, so they have to help in other ways – which they do! The situations become quite hairy and funny at times and are mostly of his own doing, but to him, a nice new shiny thing is well worth it… even if it may already belong to someone else!”

Marti-Rye the Mole has a Shiny Week (with Friends and HIS Munificent Monocle) has been superbly illustrated by Lisa Williams, published through Media & You and is intended to appeal to young readers between 7 and 10 years.

As a chapter book, it differs substantially from Roy’s four books already published: Barley’s Biscuit (Pattern’s Rock Quarry), Barley’s Biscuit (A Paddle and the Golden Glow), Barley’s Biscuit (Pipit’s Perilous Plight) and Mr. B’s Busy-Bea (The Ritzzz Hotel). They all remain popular.

“There are nine other stories in the Barley’s Biscuit series I want to publish and several more Busy-Bea’s in my bonnet – four manuscripts are already written, but this is my first attempt at a chapter book.” Roy added,

“Each of the releases are very different types of adventure stories. Barley’s Biscuit are problem solving type books, Mr. B’s Busy-Bea focuses on the battle between good and evil and Marti-Rye is just a cheeky chappie with an obsession for collecting shiny things – even if they don’t belong to him.”

Marti-Rye the Mole has a Shiny Week (with Friends and HIS Munificent Monocle) can be ordered by visiting his website https://www.roybradshaw.co.uk and is available through some outlets local to Madeley. It is also sold through Amazon and all good book stores.

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