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'In a book it happens in your head'

8 January 2018

‘One of the reasons children find magic so exciting is that they get told what do all the time. It offers them a freedom and power. I did lots of fairy, witch and giant research, it makes the fantasy more rich. Bringing in Arthurian and Shakespearean references, it's very British-inspired...

Books ‘Offer something special and different. A language medium, a thinking space. And it's also fantastic for empathy. On a screen it happens out there, in a book it happens in your head...

I do put in complicated ideas because I think children are highly intelligent. Thinking outside the box is natural to them. The heroes of my books are always the creative, inventive thinkers.' She wants her books ‘to feel like sweets not brussel sprouts. Not something that you ought to be doing but something you want to be doing.'

Cressida Cowell, author of the How to Train Your Dragon series and The Wizards of Once in the Bookseller.