The cover is slightly different to the original UK edition and uses the more usual spelling of ‘Faeries’ instead. I’m also rather enjoying the idea of being a ‘celebrated illustrator’, even if that is embroidering the truth somewhat…
In the original Thousand and One Nights tale, The magician from the Maghreb who sent Aladdin to retrieve the lamp doesn’t seem to have been given a name. Entertaining ones have been used in retellings and pantomime performances, but I wanted to give him an earnest north African name. After a little research, I felt that ‘Amayas’ suited him best. I haven’t been able to locate my source again since, much to my chagrin, but in trying to track it down again as I’m writing this post, ‘Amaya’ was yielded as an Arabic female name meaning ‘night rain’.
His costume design has a basis in Tuareg and Berber clothing, with a liberal helping of Mongolian shamanistic elements. I imagined that he had probably supplemented his magic arts in central Asia during his travels along the Silk Road. His staff is topped off with half an addax skull.
More to come! Here is a reminder of last week’s post, in case you missed it.
I have been making regular #ThrowbackThursday posts over on my Facebook page and on Twitter, but I’ve been neglecting to do so here. Time to remedy this, especially since I still haven’t got round to putting up galleries of my past published work.
Aladdin (Walker Books, 2011) is a personal favourite of mine, though it feels slightly overlooked compared to my other work. That may be partially my own fault as sharing anything from it is tricky; the book works rather like a series of theatre scenes and is best seen in actuality. Continue reading
I would like to try painting porcelain in earnest at some point, but for now, porcelain markers are a convenient and quick alternative. My only vexation is that fine detail is of necessity impossible with them, the finest nib being as thick as a large felt tip pen to allow the paint to flow through. Continue reading
‘Jingle Bells has been chosen for Children’s Books Ireland Recommended Read guide. The guide features reviews of the very best titles for 2014 and generates big orders for our Irish sales rep! They print over 40,000 copies of the guide and it’s available in libraries, bookshops and schools across Ireland and the UK. It will also be sent to all CBI members worldwide.’
This picture of the printer’s dummy of the book was taken at the London Book Fair back in April. Reports are that it’s now available for pre-order on Amazon.