Walker Books is marking the 15th anniversary of Anthony Horowitz’s first Alex Rider novel by releasing new editions of the entire series.
The publisher has also organised a writing competition with the NLT to mark the anniversary.
All 10 books in the spy series, which started with Stormbreaker in 2000 and ended with Russian Roulette in 2013, will be released with new cover art and bonus content on the 2nd April (p.b, £7.99). The cover images were designed by Two Dots, the studio that created the packaging for Ubisoft’s video games Assassins Creed and Far Cry.
To support the release of the books, Walker has created a new Alex Rider website, www.alexrider.com, which it developed with children’s advertising platform SuperAwesome.
The writing competition, organised by the National Literacy Trust, is for pupils in Key Stage 2 or 3. They will be given a short story by Horowitz and must either finish it or write their own adventure story.
Participating schools will be given resources including a downloadable teacher toolkit and a promotional poster, with the winning pupil receiving a signed Alex Rider 15th anniversary collection, an iPad, and book vouchers. Their school will also be sent £200 worth of Anthony Horowitz books.
In other anniversary plans, Walker Books has teamed up with the Youth Hostels Association (YHA) to create an adventure package. YHA hostels in England and Wales will host “spy training” camps, taking school pupils to do activities such as abseiling and kayaking, and 10,000 participating children will receive a complimentary copy of Stormbreaker.
The Alex Rider series is one of the most successful spy series for children and has racked up sales of 3.4m in all formats in the UK, according to Nielsen BookScan.
Horowitz is appearing at several literary festivals this year, including the Big Write Festival at the Discover Story Centre in Stratford in March, and the Cambridge Book Festival in April.
Last month, he launched a prize for children to take a tour of MI5’s headquarters in London with children’s TV show "Blue Peter."