Run Run Rat and The Chinese Calendar Tales reach Kiwi Land!

February 17, 2020 at 8:25 am | Posted in Bookshops, Buying my books, Hamilton, New Zealand | Leave a comment
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I’m tickled pink! All your favourite Chinese Calendar Tales beasties are now on sale in New Zealand at the fabulous Books for Kids, the best kids’ bookshop in Hamilton! Here is a photo of owner and manager Megan Lindsay with The Tale of Run Run Rat and The Tale of Pin Yin Panda! She tells me that the day after they arrived, three Run Run Rats ran out of the door with grateful customers! Go Run Run Rat!!

Run Run Rat at the China Institute in New York!

February 8, 2020 at 11:32 am | Posted in China Institute New York, Chinese New Year, Events, New York | Leave a comment
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Run Run Rat scampered into the China Institute Chinese New Year Family Celebration last Sunday, and here he is having his story read by a lovely China Institute story-teller! I am assured that the room was chockful of kiddies and their parents! I can’t wait to meet some of them in person when I fly out to New York later in the year!

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Thank you so much Michael Buening, Operations Director at the China Institute in New York, for inviting me, being so flexible when I had to cancel, and sending me these lovely photos! I’ll see you all soon!

Run Run Rat goes to New York…and hits the New York Times!

February 1, 2020 at 10:33 am | Posted in China Institute New York, Chinese New Year, Events, New York, New York Times, Year of the Rat | Leave a comment
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Hooray! Run Run Rat has run all the way to New York, where he’ll meet hundreds of kids, mums and dads at the China Institute during their special Chinese New Year Family Festival this Sunday! Take a look at this link in the famous New York Times: Seven Things to Do with your Kids in NYC this Weekend! I’m so sad that I can no longer be there to read out loud the funny and fabulous story of his adventures travelling around China, where he ends up running in a rather famous race during the Beijing Olympics! But a lovely story teller from China Institute will be telling his story in my place, and showing Harry Harrison’s fabulous pictures up on a screen to the audience during the afternoon, and for an ambitious little Rat, that’s very exciting! Especially in the Year of the Rat!

I’ll be posting lots of photos after the event. Huge thanks to Michael Buening, Director of Operations at the Institute, for inviting me and Run Run to take part in this fantastic event, and for his generosity and understanding over the last few days. I know the event is going to be just fantastic!

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A Chinese New Year’s message from Harry!

January 29, 2020 at 10:52 am | Posted in benefits of reading books, Harry Harrison, Year of the Rat | Leave a comment
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Harry Harrison, the fabulous illustrator of the Chinese Calendar Tales, has asked me to wish all our fans a very Happy Year of the Rat! And isn’t his cartoon fantastic?! I just love the grumpy pig (last year’s beastie) being overrun with cunning little rats for 2020!

Now this year is a Metal Rat Year, and apparently that means it will be a great year for just about everybody! Yippee! Here’s what lies ahead:

  • new goals!
  • new businesses!
  • new hobbies!
  • strength!
  • prosperity!
  • and even better, good luck!

 

Now here’s a great new goal for us all – let’s all read lots and lots of books this year!
Because we don’t even need a Year of the Metal Rat to chose this proven route to health, wealth and happiness!

A fabulous visit to the Grade 3s at Canadian International School!

January 22, 2020 at 1:52 pm | Posted in Canadian International School Hong Kong, Chinese festivals, Chinese New Year, Hong Kong Schools | Leave a comment
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A big HELLO to the fabulous Grade 3s at Canadian International School, who I visited on Monday! They’re currently learning about how culture is reflected through story-telling, so a funny story reading of The Tale of Pin Yin Panda, which retells the ancient Chinese legend of Lord Buddha’s Race and how the 12 animals got into the Chinese Zodiac, was just the ticket! After the story reading we had a terrific Q and A session where we discussed the real reason why pandas aren’t in the Chinese Zodiac, as well as why all the other animals are! Many thanks to teacher-librarian Colleen Williams (below) for hosting me!

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Thank you Bookazine for a fabulous Hong Kong event!

January 21, 2020 at 2:42 pm | Posted in Book signings, Bookazine Princes Building, Chinese New Year, Hong Kong events, Room to Read | Leave a comment
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A big THANK YOU to Bookazine for hosting a fabulous event last Saturday to celebrate the upcoming Year of the Rat – and our wonderful city of Hong Kong – at the beautiful Centricity in Central! A huge bunch of kids, mums and dads came along to hear three fantastic Hong Kong story readings from three fabulous Hong Kong authors, and take part in some fun Chinese New Year activities! They even got to meet Geronimo Stilton!

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Of course we had to celebrate the 12th Birthday of The Tale of Run Run Rat, the very first of the Chinese Calendar Tales, which even outsold Harry Potter for 6 weeks in Hong Kong when it was released in 2008! Here I am, above, reading the story to the audience. We had a lot of fun following Run Run from his humble Chinese village all around China to the Olympics Marathon in Beijing!

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Then everyone trooped into the activity room to make my rather tricky Rat Mask – I was SO impressed with all the masks the kids made, with a little bit of help from their parents! I think the mums and dads especially had a lot of fun! I’ll be posting details shortly, so you can make the mask too!

After that, Karen Jane Ho and Jessamy Woolley gave two fabulously entertaining story readings – and trips around Hong Kong’s special places – with their beautiful books Emi Takes Hong Kong and Billy the Cavalier and Friends. And then everyone made some gorgeous Chinese New Year decorations…and played Hong Kong Bingo!

Thank you again to Arti and Shonee Mirchandani of Bookazine, their events manager Clemence Robine, and of course Mrs Mirchandani with her steadfast support! Here we are below:

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And thank you to all the lovely fans who came up to say hello and get their books signed afterwards!

And last but not least, thank you to my dear friend Jennie Orchard, of my favourite children’s literacy charity Room to Read, who came along to support us all. Here we are below with my beautiful Boxed Set of Chinese Calendar Tales.

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We all had a wonderful afternoon!

Happy New Year 2020 – and a fabulous event next Saturday to celebrate Chinese New Year!

January 12, 2020 at 3:06 pm | Posted in Book signings, Bookshop event, Chinese New Year, Chinese Zodiac, Hong Kong events | Leave a comment
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A very Happy New Year to you all for 2020! I hope that it’s filled with fun and laughter and wonderful events for all my lovely fans…including this very special Year of the Rat event by my favourite Hong Kong bookshop Bookazine on Saturday 18th January from 2-5pm at a very special venue at Centricity, 2nd Floor, Landmark Chater, Central!

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We’ll be celebrating my feisty and ambitious Run Run Rat of course :), with a fun story reading followed by a chance to make your own Rat Mask! Then we’ll be celebrating our beautiful city of Hong Kong with story readings by my fabulous fellow Hong Kong authors Jane Karen Ho and Jessamy Woolley, who will respectively host a CNY decoration-making session and a fun game of Hong Kong Wildlife Bingo!

Not to mention special appearances by the most famous rat in the world, Geronimo Stilton! Wow!

So make sure you book your ticket NOW at this link so you don’t miss out! I can’t wait to see you there!

New York! New York!

October 14, 2019 at 2:36 pm | Posted in New York, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Hello again! I’ve just spent a wonderful week in New York with the Chinese Calendar Tales and it’s been fantastic fun! So I thought I’d write a post all about it to tell you what I’ve been up to!

With the Chinese Calendar Tales series now completed, and our beautiful Boxed Set selling brilliantly in Hong Kong, I thought it was about time that I showed the books off to some important people in New York!

Monday 7 October: The China Institute

Here I am below outside the fabulous China Institute in Washington Street. I met up with Shenzhan Liao, Head of the School of Chinese Studies, as well as Public Programming Manager Aaron Nicholson and the President, James Heimowitz. And I returned there just before the end of my trip to leave them with most of my Boxed Set! It was fantastic to meet everyone and to see their beautiful new facilities! You can read more about the Institute here.

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Tuesday 8 October: The Asia Society, New York

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On Tuesday I spent the afternoon at the Asia Society in Park Avenue with the lovely Lauren Smith, Buyer, Books and Media.

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After our meeting, I was very lucky to see their remarkable exhibition of modern Chinese calligraphy by Wang Donling. You can read more about the Asia Society here.

 

Wednesday 9 October

On chilly, rainy Wednesday, I caught the subway to Long Island City, where I met Xiaoning Wang, CEO of ChinaSprout, a leading supplier of Chinese Cultural Educational Products. I’m very excited to report that ChinaSprout will be supplying the Chinese Calendar Tales to buyers in the United States and Canada! You can find out more about the company here.

Thursday 10 October

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Then on Thursday, I spent a fantastic afternoon with Seph Duong, Director of Programs and Guest Experience at MOCA, the Museum of Chinese in America in Centre Street near China Town in Downtown New York! I also met his colleagues Jeff Van Damme and Jeffrey Reynolds. All of them are gifted performance artists as well as dedicated staff at MOCA and it was a privilege to meet them! You can see me with Seph (right) and Jeffrey (left) below with “our” Zodiac animals! You can find out more about MOCA here!

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It was such a fabulous opportunity to meet everybody, and I’m so happy that they loved the books! I’ll see you all again at Chinese New Year in January 2020!

I cannot close this post without thanking my friend and inspirational guide Alice Mong, Executive Director of the Asia Society here in Hong Kong, for all the wonderful introductions, help, and suggestions which made my visit such a success. Thank you so much Alice! You can find out more about the Asia Society Hong Kong and its fantastic work here.

A fabulous day at The Peak School!

October 14, 2019 at 9:47 am | Posted in Hong Kong Schools, Poetry Workshops for kids, Story Readings, The Peak School, Writing competitions for kids, writing workshops for children | Leave a comment
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It’s been a HUGELY busy fortnight, and first of all I have to let you all know about my fabulous day at The Peak School back on Thursday 3rd October! We had a fun day of story readings and workshops for everyone from Year 3 to Year 6! We started with my How to Write a Riveting Story workshop for the Year 6s; next came an Introduction to Poetry for the Year 4s; the Year 5s then learned all the science explaining why Books are a Brain’s Best Friend, and finally the Year 3s had a funny story reading of The Tale of Ping Pong Pig where they learned all about the mighty Yongle Emperor, and cheered as Ping Pong Pig evaded the cunning Minister of Most Important Things! Thank you to lovely librarian Rebecca Rigden Green for being such a wonderful host! And I can’t wait to receive all your entries in my Clever Competition!

Thank you Berkelouw Books, Rose Bay!

August 20, 2019 at 4:53 pm | Posted in Berkelouw Books, Book signings, Buying my books, Children's Chinese Zodiac Books, Sydney Bookshops | Leave a comment
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This afternoon I dropped into one of my favourite Sydney bookshops, Berkelouw Books, where I signed copies of Storm Whale. You can buy your very own signed copy there, and you can also order all and any of my Chinese Calendar Tales from them, including our fabulous Boxed Set! A warm thank you to manager Bru Hammer (above) for all the support!

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