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This week I talked to a young boy who was crying because his "friends" wouldn't let him walk to school with him. Meanwhile, adult bullies are in positions of power all over the world. We shouldn't tolerate bullying at any level, just as we shouldn't tolerate racism and sexism.
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I hope this email finds you well. We are getting back to a semblance of normal in New Zealand (after a good stretch Covid-free, we imported a couple of new cases from the UK this week. Hopefully that will quash any complacency on quarantine measures.). Nearly everyone is back at work and children are back at school. Which means some kids are back to being bullied.

I was bullied at school. Not physically (apart from the one time when a girl punched me in the stomach for no reason. I’d love to find her now and see if she remembers that the way I do.), but it is the drip-drip-drip of snide comments, insults, or exclusion that gets to you over the weeks, months and years. I remember the sick feeling in my stomach on Sunday afternoons from the dread of going to school. School holidays were blissful and I would have adored lockdown if we had had a pandemic in the late 70s or early 80s.

About five years ago, an American publisher asked me if I had any ideas for middle grade/chapter books. I thought about what I would have liked to have read at that age and the Friends Against Bullying club was born. I sent it to the publisher, who liked the concept and the characters but wanted changes which I wasn’t happy to make (e.g. Not having the police come into school at the end of the book because having police and children together was a touchy issue!). I ended up going it alone, hiring an editor, testing the book out on my brilliant advance reading team and publishing the book in 2016. A follow-up about cyber bullying came out in 2018.

Children and adults who read the first two books loved them. The second book was a Wishing Shelf award winner, which means a lot as the books are judged by teachers and school children in the UK.
The third and final book had to tie up all the loose threads and provide a satisfying conclusion to the series. I asked my niece and nephew what they would like to read. They wanted romance and football!

So now the third book is out and the FAB Club series is complete. The only problem is making people aware that it exists.
 

How you can help - leave a review on Amazon, or Goodreads

If you would like to read FAB Club 3 – The Big Match, let me know and I’ll send you a link to download the ebook for free. If you like it, leaving me a review on Amazon would be an enormous help (or search for it on Goodreads and leave a review there).

FAB Club 3 on Amazon.com

FAB Club 3 on Amazon.co.uk

Thank you.
 

PS. If you think someone else might find this interesting, please pass it on.
PPS. The roof is on and it's raining, woo-hoo!
PPPS. There is a bathtub, but no taps, boo-hoo...

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Copyright © 2020 Alex Hallatt's Cartoons and Writing, All rights reserved.


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