Deeper Reading Podcast

Jake Hayes discusses the books that helped inspire our greatest children’s authors to create their own modern masterpieces. Dive down the rabbit hole of children’s literature with us as we revisit some beloved classics and uncover lost works of staggering genius.

1. The Silver Chair with Piers Torday

Piers Torday talks about the book that influenced his children’s novel The Frozen Sea – C.S. Lewis’s The Silver Chair from the Chronicles of Narnia.

Read the accompanying blog post here

2. The Lie Tree with Damaris Young

Damaris Young, author of The Switching Hour and The Creature Keeper, talks about the book that inspired her – The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge.

Read the accompanying blog post here

3. Watership Down with SF Said

SF Said, author of the Varjak Paw books and Phoenix talks about the book that inspired him to become a writer, Watership Down by Richard Adams.

Read the accompanying article here

4. Stig of the Dump with Sophie Kirtley

Sophie Kirtley, author of Stone Age adventure The Wild Way Home, talks about the book that inspired her – Clive King’s Stig of the Dump. 

Read an accompanying blogpost about Stig of the Dump here

5. Night Birds on Nantucket with Fleur Hitchcock

Fleur Hitchcock talks about the book that made her realise not all heroines needed to be ‘nice’. Night Birds on Nantucket by Joan Aiken is the third in a series that began with the Wolves of Willoughby Chase and the first to feature sparky street urchin Dido Twite as its protagonist. We also discuss the book’s influence on her Clifftoppers series whose characters draw on Dido’s pluck, invention and kindness.

Read an accompanying blogpost about Night Birds on Nantucket here

6. Howl’s Moving Castle with Katherine Rundell

Katherine Rundell, author of the Rooftoppers books discusses Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones. This beloved book from childhood helped stoke her passion for language and set her on a path of exploring hidden worlds both in stories and real life. Katherine also talks here about Night Climbers of Cambridge, a guide to scaling ancient buildings and University colleges that informed her own real life rooftopping adventures and inspired characters like Matteo, the protagonist of her new book Skysteppers.

Read the accompanying blogpost here

7. Fortunately with Jon Klassen

In this episode Jon Klassen, author and illustrator of the Hat trilogy, talks about his bumper new picture book – The Rock From the Sky. The story unfolds over five surprising chapters and follows a familiar cast of awkward animals as they come to terms with the enormous boulder that disrupts their lives.He talks about some of the surprising influences behind his new story, ranging from Samuel Becket to Stanley Kubrick, Maurice Sendak to Edward Gorey. But first we discuss ‘Fortunately’ another classic story of unforeseen consequences by of one of his picture book idols, Remy Charlip.

Read the accompanying blogpost here

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