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Robert Westall was born in Northumberland and went to school in Tynemouth. He studied fine art at Durham University and after he graduated he worked as an art teacher. Despite having two degrees in Fine Art, and majoring in Sculpture, Robert Westall spent his working life teaching art in secondary schools, and writing only in his spare time. He loved teaching and worked in Birmingham, Yorkshire and Cheshire as a head of department.
He has had around 40 books published and they vary from ghost stories to fantasy epics.
Robert Westall died in 1993.
In an extraordinary mix of fact and fiction, Robert Westall describes the Second World War through the eyes of a cat. Blitzcat leaves her home to track down her person, a pilot with the RAF. Her journey takes her through all the dangers of the war – there’s a particularly vivid account of the Coventry blitz - and in and out of the lives of people caught up in it. Passion and violence are depicted vividly, as are humour, courage and human warmth. Few authors for children write as well about war as Westall, none write about it better; this book deserves to be recognised as a modern classic. ~ Andrea Reece
Now with a brilliant new cover look, Robert Westall's gripping first novel for children set during World War Two is celebrating its fortieth anniversary. One of the best war books ever written for children. Completely unputdownable, scary and with incredibly well portrayed characters, itt captures the life during World War II brilliantly. The Machine Gunners won the Carnegie Medal in 1975.
Robert Westall was without doubt one of the finest children's authors of the 20th century. In this marvellous collection, his favourite themes come to the fore - cats, christmas and ghosts. Beautifully illustrated by enormously respected John Lawrence, there is a chilling but moving ghost story, a totally absorbing cat story both of which are centred around Christmas. Westall explores wider themes too: childhood experiences, family relationships and social justice. This is a very special book indeed and a marvellous gift for anyone of 8 upwards.
A powerful and haunting story about a boy’s pain and jealousy after the death of his father. Simon is outraged when his mother tells him that she plans to remarry. He can’t stand Joe Morton. He’s everything his father wasn’t and Simon can’t forgive him for that. To make matters worse, Simon’s mother and sister seem to be quite happy to welcome him into the family and to rub out the past. Simon takes refuge in a nearby mill and finds himself stalked by an unlikely trio of scarecrows. They are creeping nearer and nearer…But, can scarecrows really move? Simon seems to have unleashed a powerful hatred. Is there anything that can stop it?
Carnegie Medal winner in 1975. This is one of the best war books ever written for children. Completely unputdownable, scary an dincredibly well portrayed characters. It captures the life during World War II so brilliantly though not surprisingly as Westall, who dies some years ago now, was a brilliant writer and a great storyteller. Incredibly relevant to today’s world where we appear all too quick to go to war. (12+) To find out more about this book CLICK HERE to visit the Carnegie Greenaway site