Our Blog


Happy Birthday, Blog!

Blog - one year old

Today our blog is one year old! Wow, it’s grown up so fast… And boy, have we reached some impressive milestones – in the last year we have published 124 posts; introduced 46 new titles on the blog (not including new editions); attended and reported on 5 big book fairs and festivals, both UK-based and international; given lots of Backlist Love to 36 separate backlist titles; and featured 22 guest posts from a wonderful bunch of authors, illustrators, booksellers, librarians and literacy advocates. Phew.

In celebration of this birthday, we thought we’d take the opportunity to look over the past year of posts and remember some of the favourites. (And don’t forget to scroll down to find out how to take part in our extra-special celebratory book giveaway…!)

One of the most popular guest blogs was superstar author Gillian Cross’ love letter to mobile libraries, and in a year with a flurry of headlines about proposed cuts to libraries across the country, we also felt it was important to cast a light on one of the worst affected areas in our blog about the importance of school libraries and the librarians that run them. We tackled one of the big topics of 2014 when we wrote about our opinion on the gender debate in children’s books and when we explained our policy on submitting manuscripts and unsolicited advances, we hoped an insight into our side of things would shine a different light on a topic that is a hot-button issue for many new authors we meet on the road. Last year was also a big year for phonics in education and our post on where we stand on the phonic scheme proved popular with those dealing with it on a day-to-day basis…! But taking a break from all the serious opinion stuff, we also got a chance to use the blog for some grade A entertainment and that was never better than with our introduction to a young video blogger who made us cry with laughter at his reviews – seriously, check him out! And some of our super arty posts proved highlights with the response, especially the guest post from the scarily-talented Vladimir Stankovic who also happened to be one of our favourite illustrators of the last year, and our behind-the-scenes look at the creation of one of the most popular jacket designs of the year, Tilly’s Promise by Linda Newbery.

And here’s just a few of the blog highlights in pictures…

Bologna Book Fair

In March we were featured in The Bookseller at Bologna Children’s Book Fair

(And here’s our Bologna stand being built…)

Jane with Stand

In April we went to the London Book Fair and broke our sales agency’s stand…sorry Bounce!

Kirstin and Darren Shan

In July we went to the YALC and bumped into Darren Shan – always a pleasure…

Frank Cottrell Boyce and Mairi

In August we spent three blissful weeks trotting around the Edinburgh Book Festival and met lots of our lovely authors – here’s Mairi with Frank Cottrell Boyce!

Picture Squirrels line up 1

In November we celebrated our successful new picture book range with some of the authors and illustrators

In honour of the one-year mark, we’re giving away a selection of our most popular books of 2014. To be in with a chance of winning, please email info@barringtonstoke.co.uk with BIRTHDAY BLOG GIVEAWAY in the subject header and include the following information:

  • your name
  • your postal address
  • your preferred age range category: either 5-8, 8-12 or Teen

Six lucky winners will be selected, two for each age range category. Deadline for entering is Sunday 1st February. Good luck!

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