Au­thor’s se­cret agent sur­vival tip

Central Otago Mirror - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE - DEB­BIE JAMIESON

Ruby Red­fort has sage ad­vice, should you hap­pen to come across a shark.

Do not have blood ooz­ing in the wa­ter and swim to­wards the shark, not away from it, she tells read­ers.

‘‘What­ever you do, do not let them ex­plore you with their teeth.’’

Red­fort is one of the pop­u­lar char­ac­ters cre­ated by in­ter­na­tion­ally ac­claimed il­lus­tra­tor and au­thor of chil­dren’s books Lau­ren Child.

Based in the United King­dom, Child was in New Zealand last week for the Auck­land Writer’s Fes­ti­val.

She an­swered a plea from Re­mark­ables Pri­mary School to make a di­ver­sion to Queen­stown.

Af­ter time read­ing and de­scrib­ing her Char­lie and Lola se­ries with chil­dren at the school, she spoke to about 300 older stu­dents from Re­mark­ables, Queen­stown Pri­mary and St Joseph’s about her first se­ries - Clarice Bean, and the later se­ries on the pop­u­lar teenage se­cret agent Ruby Red­fort.

In the se­ries Ruby Red­fort is a glam­orous girl with mil­lion­aire par­ents and a but­ler who se­cretly sup­ports her in her fight against crime.

Child said that af­ter her books were re­jected by many pub­lish­ers she learned she could write sto­ries by also draw­ing.

Tal­ent, luck and de­ter­mi­na­tion were needed to be­come suc­cess­ful, she ad­vised the chil­dren.

And be­fore leav­ing Child im­parted an­other im­por­tant piece of sur­vival ad­vice, cour­tesy of Ruby Red­fort.

‘‘Should you meet a po­lar bear and have the chance to kill it and de­cide you’re go­ing to eat it - don’t eat it’s liver. It’s very poi­sonous.’’

‘‘What­ever you do, do not let them ex­plore you with their teeth.’’

DEB­BIE JAMIESON

Ac­claimed chil­dren’s il­lus­tra­tor and au­thor Lau­ren Child signs books for fan and St Joseph’s school stu­dent, Phoebe O’Don­nell, 11, of Queen­stown.

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