Sunday 17 July 2016

Lock up your valuables! there's a master criminal in town...

Shifty McGifty & Slippery Sam
 The Diamond Chase 
By Tracey Corderoy and Steve Lenton 
£10.99 HB Published by Nosy Crow

Our beloved well-meaning dough-wielding dog detectives are back on the case when a valuable diamond tiara belonging to non-other than Lady Kate goes missing in this fabulous penguin filled romp. 
A perfectly rhyming text written by Tracey Corderoy will tickle your funny bone while the luscious illustrations by our next guest will have you reaching for the nearest bun. A fantastic story to read aloud and one which will no doubt be enjoyed over and over again. But for heavens sake keep hold of your jewels...just in case.

Let's sit down and have a chat and a cup of tea with illustrator 
Steven Lenton!

Do you have a favourite cake recipe? 

Lemon Drizzle or Coffee and Walnut are my absolute favourites to make.  As far as 'shop bought' goes we are very lucky/unlucky that our studio is next door to the Hummingbird Bakery in Soho and the chocolatey waves of deliciousness waft in through our windows every morning and afternoon - they bake the MOST DELICIOUS Red Velvet cupcakes.

Do you have a favourite penguin fact?

I love the contemporary classic fact that Benedict Cumberbatch can't pronounce the word penguin correctly. My favorite, more educational fact is that Penguin’s black and white plumage serves as camouflage while swimming. The black plumage on their back is hard to see from above, while the white plumage on their front looks like the sun reflecting off the surface of the water when seen from below. Isn't nature just AMAZING?!

Whats your favourite pantone colour? 

I prefer PANATONE (especially at Christmas), but my favourite PANTONE color would have to be ORANGE 021 C, because it is the orange featured throughout our premier Shifty and Sam fiction title 'The Spooky School' publishing in September, which Tracey and I are really thrilled about. 

Which is your favourite spread in the book? 

It has to be the reveal of the 42 Penguins in the ballroom scene - when Tracey and I have read the story at events and schools the audience always gasps when they see all the dancing dogs surrounded by waiter penguins - but which one is Sidney Scarper?!

Tell us about your three favourite book shops in London. 

Pickled Pepper is my local children's books shop in Crouch End and has a wonderful selection of classic and contemporary picture books and fiction titles.  They also allow me to create lovely window displays for my books and throw lovely book launches too - Steve and Urmi who own and run the business are lovely and BIG Shifty and Sam fans.

Waterstones Piccadilly and Waterstones stores in general have been incredibly supportive of our Shifty and Sam series and I LOVE to spend as much time as possible exploring the floors (maybe even sometimes the cocktail bar on the way 5th floor, ahem!) chock-full with beautiful tomes.

One book shop which I hope to visit soon is the beautiful Tales on Moon Lane - I think that shop could possible become a new favourite too!

Which spread was the trickiest to complete? 

There is a lot of plot going on in the Shifty and Sam picture books, so keeping the illustrations simple yet full of detail and humour is generally quite tricky!  In this one I think again the ballroom scene as there were so many penguins and dogs to draw! I think my favourite bit in this spread is the two bull terriers dancing the tango!

What would your dog Holly make of Shifty and Sam? And who would she be if she was in one of their adventures? 

WELL it's funny you should say that as Holly does feature somewhere in all three picture books so far - can you spot her?  She is a miniature Jack Russell!  In real-life Holly likes to be the centre of attention so I think she would be MILDLY disappointed that she doesn't have a main role in any of the far!

Do you collect anything? 

I'm sorry/not sorry to say that I am slightly obsessed not only with collecting picture books, but also Jem and the Holograms merchandise...

See my studio desk as proof! I had a secret obsession with the cartoon in the 80's!

Whats on the drawing board? 

I am working on a top secret picture book just now which will tell you more about as soon as I am allowed!  Also Tracey and I are working on the 4th and 5th Shifty and Sam picture books along with the 2nd and 3rd fiction titles! I am also currently writing my second picture book with Nosy Crow. 

Where can we catch you and lovely Tracey on tour over the next few months? 

We have been very lucky this year and have been invited along to all the major festivals and Tracey has been touring literally HUNDREDS of schools up and down the country with The Diamond Chase! Catch us together at the Edinburgh Festival, Bath Festival, The Cheltenham Festival which we are launching again this year.

With HUGE Thanks to Steven 
for taking the time to join us, 
and to 
Nosy Crow and *Dom* for 
sending us a copy of this book! 

Be sure to check in with Picture Books Blogger for the final stop on this blog tour! 

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