Penguin Random House Children’s will publish The Christmasaurus, the first middle-grade children’s novel by Tom Fletcher, musician and co-author of the Dinosaur That Pooped series of picture books (Red Fox).
Commissioning editor Natalie Doherty acquired world rights to the book, which is about a boy called William and a ‘Christmasaurus’ dinosaur, from Stephanie Thwaites at Curtis Brown. It will be published under the Puffin imprint in hardback on 6th October.
Fletcher is a member of the band McFly.
Doherty said: “The Christmasaurus is a festive treat of a book – the reading equivalent of curling up by the fire with a mince pie. Tom writes with such enthusiasm and heart that it’s impossible not to be swept up by his story. Puffin has ambitious and exciting plans to introduce new readers to Tom’s unique creativity and imagination, establishing him as a major new voice in children’s fiction.”
Fletcher said he began writing the book last summer, counting down the days until Christmas.
“I was so bummed out by how long I had to wait that I decided to create my own festive cheer and start writing a Christmas story,” he said. “I loved every second of the writing process. I wrote the entire book physically sitting in my kitchen next to the coffee machine, but mentally I was in the North Pole. I can only hope and wish that if a child reads or is read The Christmasaurus they might, for a moment, love Christmas just as much as me.”
Fletcher announced the new book on YouTube yesterday (1st March). He was supposed to launch the book at the Penguin Random House sales conference last week but his wife was in labour at the time, so he filmed a video about the book from her hospital bed.
Last year’s The Dinosaur That Pooped a Lot, co-authored by Fletcher and fellow McFly band member Dougie Poynter, with illustrations by Garry Parsons, was one of the biggest children’s books of 2015, with sales of 144,567 in the UK, according to Nielsen BookScan.