Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Michael Morpurgo and us getting Christmassy

Yes, with a twinkle in his eye and a ruddy smile, Michael Morpurgo said it at his own event in October at the Ilkley Literature Festival: "It's early for Christmas, isn't it?" So we've saved this for December!

Michael Morpurgo and a fan
To a packed hall with audiences of all ages, Michael Morpurgo, accompanied by the Coope, Boyes and Simpsons singers, told the story of The Best Christmas Present in the World. The narrator finds a letter in a secondhand desk and he reads it: it's December in 1941 in the war trenches....... It is a beautiful story, a typical Morpurgo tear-jerker: and with those acapella singers! Tears. For those who missed it, put some carols on, gather round and read it yourselves: the story was published in 2004 and is available as a lovely picture book.

After the singing, storytelling, jokes and tears, a lengthy queue of excited children (and their families) formed to meet and greet Michael Morpurgo, pick up some signed bookplates (he'd dislocated his shoulder and couldn't do personal signings), and snap a couple of photos. We also caught a glimpse of his latest novel, A Medal for Leroy which was inspired by the true story of Britain's first black army officer.

The thing I discovered most at this event was that while so many children love Michael Morpurgo's books, he's also a very, very entertaining performer. He's also a bit tall.

Are you a Morpurgo fan?
And......seeing as it's December,
now we've gone all Christmassy at home!
Paying homage to our blog, this year's festive tree is made up of all the books that have come into our home during 2012. Some have been read, some have yet to be. Some books have come and gone back to libraries or been passed on to share with other readers.

In front of the Christmas tree


The bird's eye view
And like all good treats, our tree has books in the centre too.


  1. This sounds interesting, and I will be looking forward to Morpurgo's newest book. I love your book tree, but is that little M in these photos? I haven't gone all Christmasy yet. One of the things on my "bucket list" is to spend a Christmas in London - someday.

    1. Wow Alex, a bucket list! I've never even thought of one of those :) Little M got A Medal For Leroy for Christmas. She enjoyed it but comaplained that it was too short!


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