The Talent Thief came about as the result of a lucid dream - I awoke one morning clutching my chest, convinced that a towering creature had stolen whatever talent I had for writing - in the form of a glowing sphere. I developed the idea into a book which was ultimately published by Macmillan with film rights sold to Universal Pictures.
The Storm Maker was my second book and came from a screenplay called The Fanmaker which I had been working on for many years. Much of the concept art work on this site came about as a result of me trying to push the project forward. It was fun to re-imagine it as a book - once again for Macmillan.
The Talent Thief
Wealthy orphans Adam and Cressida Bloom couldn't be less alike. Adam can't seem to help being exceedingly ordinary whereas Cressida, his glamorous sister, has a magnificent talent – when she sings, even the birds stop to listen. Then Cressida is invited to perform at Fortescue's festival of young talents and Adam tags along. But once the children arrive at the festival, in a mountain-top hotel, their terrific talents begin mysteriously to disappear. A piano virtuoso suddenly forgets how to play, a maths genius finds she can no longer multiply. There's a sinister shadow that only Adam ever sees, a strange glow emanating from behind closed doors . . . With the help of an erratic ex-racing driver, dashing Amy Swift, Adam and Cressida rip-roar off through the mountains in Amy's shiny racing car, the Silver Swift. They are in perilous pursuit of the dastardly talent thief! But from a hair-raisingly close shave with an avalanche to crash-landing a plane on a runway the size of a table, Adam never gives up. Perhaps he isn't as ordinary as he first thought!
The Storm Maker
A can-you-top-this page-turner
-- Kirkus Reviews
Ingeniously engineered -- The Independent
Madcap extraordinary adventure of the highest order -- lovereadingforkids
Welds invention and adventure together with charming results -- Booklist
Madeline and Rufus Breeze come from a long line of fantabulous fanmakers – they’ve been keeping people cool in style for centuries. And their eccentric inventor father has stubbornly continued the tradition . . . even though their village has been covered in snow for several years. Now the Breeze family is so in debt, local tyrant Bartholomew Tullock is threatening to take their home. Then a smooth-tongued stranger and his blue-haired dog arrive in town with a solution to the Breezes’ problem. Soon determined Madeline and her father are off on a death-defying journey to sell their breathtaking and breeze-making fans to the residents of the one nearby city that is (strangely) still hot. If only they didn’t have to face a mini-cyclone, stolen fans, enemy spies, eclectic elements and desert dunes hotter than an oven to get there . . . And in their absence it’s up to Rufus to keep his mother and their house safe from greedy Tullock and his nightmarish skeletal sidekick, Scratskin. Hair-raising and harebrained, and with equally over-the-top illustrations by award-winning illustrator, David Roberts!
In the US The Storm Maker is called The Deep Freeze of Bartholomew Tullock