I’ve been a fan of Lauren Child’s work for years. Her children's books, with their zany patchwork collages, wonky text going in all directions and off-the-wall stories, are utterly entrancing. In fact I reckon I’ve given copies of her fabulous Charlie and Lola books and Clarice Bean stories to just about every child I know - goddaughters, nieces and friends’ children. I even bought a copy of an edition of Pippi Longstocking she illustrated for, er… myself.
Child is incredibly prolific and last year she launched the Ruby Redfort stories for readers aged nine and up. Undercover agent Ruby first appeared in the Clarice Bean books but so many readers asked about Ruby that Child decided to give her her own six-book series. First came Look Into My Eyes and now the second – Take Your Last Breath – is out.
Super-cool detective Ruby is only 13 but she’s a genius at cracking codes and puzzles. This time round she’s on a mission to crack the case of the Twinford pirates, while evading the clutches of a vile sea monster and an evil count. And one thing’s for sure, if anyone can convince children that puzzle-solving and code-cracking are fun, it’s Child.
Now, thanks to HarperCollins, I have got a copy of Take Your Last Breath to give away to a lucky House With No Name reader. All you have to do is leave a comment about who you’d give it to at the end of this post and I’ll announce the winner next week.
This giveaway is open to readers with UK postal addresses only. The closing date is 12 noon on December 18, so get your entries in soon!
Take Your Last Breath (HarperCollins, £12.99).