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June 2024 Refugee Week in Fiction

17 to 23 June 2024, Refugee Week

Refugee Week is a UK-wide festival celebrating the contributions, creativity and resilience of refugees and people seeking sanctuary.

I will be taking part in an online event with The Anne Frank Trust

Sign up here now: https://forms.office.com/e/KF0rrFiryA

 

More Refugee Week resources follow below and here are a selection of my relevant books …

After the War (Barrington Stoke) Tom “This is the story of 300 children, Holocaust survivors who came to live in Cumbria in 1945, direct from the concentration camps of Europe. It is based on survivor testimonies

D-Day Dog (Barrington Stoke)  

Tom “I wanted to think about how today’s refugees are part of our history, part of our future and that is why it is so good to welcome them to the UK”

 

Gus the Fantastic Football Cat (Egmont, KS1)

Tom “This is about a Syrian girl and her dad who look after a rescue cat when they arrive in the UK from Syria. The parallel of the girl taken in by a UK community and her, in turn, taking a rescue cat in is the only thing about the story that relates to her background. The rest of the story is hopefully a lot lighter, as the cat reveals it can predict World Cup football results.”

Pitch Invasion (Barrington Stoke)

Tom “This is a bit more direct. The story is about a haunted hillfort in Cornwall and a ghostbusting duo – Seth and Nadiya – who realise there is a parallel between the ghost of Iron Age refugees escaping the brutal Romans by heading west and two Syrian boys – Galip and Aylan – who have recently been taken in by a Cornish family, after tragedy in Syria. The refugees I describe could well have been some of your Iron Age ancestors, people who might have been part of Boudica’s Iceni tribe after she was killed fighting them. I wanted to think about how there are refugees now just as there always have been. People have always had to flee. Then and now.”


Tom on “Why I featured refugee child characters in recent books…”

“Several of my latest published books have featured child refugees who have made it to the UK to be taken in by families and communities.

I did this because I have visited many schools and communities that have children who are refugees from Syria (and other troubled places in the world) and met them and heard their stories.

That – and reading books and articles about the war – motivated me to develop Yusra, Galip and Aylan as characters in my children’s books.

I did it, also, because I want children who are in all schools to be able to read about how we – in our relatively safe and stable country – can help people whose lives have been smashed to pieces and how we need to remember this country has a history of taking in and accepting refugees.”

 


Refugee Week June 2023

 

“Boat People” with the National Literacy Trust includes :

  • 5 very short stories about people who have had to escape danger by boat, set in the years 1914, 1943, 1975, 2010 and today

Available in print to read aloud from here

Or to watch being read aloud by me from here https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLmmlG7jutI-1sTB2jvWewnZQBc-eQlddq

  • an introductory assembly (15 minutes long) from me https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzUXr-o3g9M
  • 5 writing exercises delivered by video, relating to the stories and the theme of refugees, with worksheets for the children here
  • a teachers’ guide here
  • Combined powerpoint very kindly shared by Penketh High  of all the writing exercises for lesson time here.  

Certificate for your school or classroom or for individual work
Download here

 

 

 

 

 

 


Refugee Week 2022

Watch Now “NLT Refugee Week virtual event: In Conversation with Tom Palmer”  recorded from 20 June 2022 here

Certificate to share with your pupils here.

“The Girl in the Lewandowski Top” – is a FREE 5 part story about a Ukrainian Refugee in 2022 with teacher guide and worksheets. This was written for Refugee Week 2022 for the National Literacy Trust but can be used all year round.

      • Read “The Girl in the Lewandowski Tophere
      • Teacher Guide here
      • Worksheets here

Them” – is a FREE 5 part read aloud story set in 1945, from the point of view of the children in the Lake District community who received 300 child refugees from the Nazi concentration camps after the end of the Second World War.  This was written for Holocaust Memorial Day 2022 for the National Literacy Trust but can be used all year round.

      • Read “Them” here
      • A powerpoint introducing “Them” here
      • 5 short films and worksheets to support “Them” story and inspire pupils to write their own responses here
      • A teacher guide with ideas and sources to support your delivery of “Them” and children’s writing here
      • 5 short films of Tom reading out loud “Them” available from here

“The Question” is a FREE 5 part read aloud story set today, from the point of view of pupils meeting a Holocaust survivor at their school and asking them about their refugee experience.  This was written for Holocaust Memorial Day 2021 for the National Literacy Trust but can be used all year round.

      •  Read “The Question” here for you to read aloud / stream / share or as a series of 5 films of Tom reading the story for you to use however suits your school here ).

You can also find out more about the Windermere children’s story in my children’s book “After the War from Auschwitz to Ambleside” here.

 

If you would like a reminder of when these resources will be available please use the contact form below.  Please be patient.  Our replies are not automated so you will get a personal reply. See T&Cs. 

 

Buy Books

Signed and dedicated copies from my local independent children’s bookshop “The Thoughtful Spot”  here.

Visit my Amazon bookshop  or support your local bookshop HIVE

Overseas : FREE Delivery worldwide from The Book Depository.
Australia: Boomerang   

Canada: Amazon Canada
New Zealand: Wheelers       

USA :  Indigo books

Schools bumper book pack and class set offers here.

Email me here for more information or use my contact form here to ask me a question.

 

 

Thank you.

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EDIT

Angel of Grasmere – writer’s diary tweet version

Discover more about Angel of Grasmere here

Read Chapter 1 of Angel of Grasmere

Discover more here

Summer Term News 2024

What’s on offer this term, Summer 2024

  • NEW Angel of Grasmere NEW historical fiction preview
  • Book now! Online events
  • Meet Me! In person events
  • 6 June 2024 D-Day 80th Anniversary – read D-Day Dog and free resources
  • 17 June 2024 Refugee Week
  • May 2024 new audio books
  • Summer 2024 NEW Rocky Race Soccer Diaries
  • Autumn Term Author visits

NEW Book!

Angel of Grasmere:from Dunkirk to the Fells
By Tom Palmer Published May 2024 Barrington Stoke.

July 1940 – Tarn struggles to come to terms with the loss of her beloved brother in the chaos of the British retreat at Dunkirk and she and her friends scour the hills around their Westmorland home, watching for any signs of the long-dreaded Nazi invasion.

But as the war drags on, with little good news from the front, the locals become aware of someone carrying out anonymous acts of kindness.  With no one claiming credit, the village come to think of this unidentified stranger as a kind of guardian angel, but when his identity is finally revealed can Tarn come to terms with the truth…?

“In the darkest of days, that’s when the miracles begin”

“In this powerful new novel, Tom Palmer conveys the devastating impact of war both for those who fight on the frontlines and those who are left at home to worry and grieve. Angel of Grasmere is another brilliant example from Tom of how history can be brought vividly to life for young people today in a way that they can relate to and empathise with.” Ailsa Bathgate

 Free resources available now …

  • Trailer https://youtu.be/BAwGDDuNRHk
  • Tom’s writer’s scrapbook
  • Tom’s writer’s diary
  • Interview with Tom
  • A cover prediction set of worksheets
  • Angel paper dolls activity
  • Settings map worksheet
  • A Little Lakeland Nature-read along and colour in

Discover more about it and all these free resources here https://tompalmer.co.uk/angel-of-grasmere/

Signed copies are already available to pre-order from Sam Read Books, Grasmere www.samreadbooks.co.uk/product/AngelGrasmere/12997


Meet me 2024 – Online Events

Dunkirk Anniversary – A Commemoration Special with Mr Dilly and Tom Palmer

  • Join Tom Palmer speaking on location from the beaches of Dunkirk and the Grasmere Fells
  • Interview and conversation with Mr Dilly and Tom Palmer
  • Watch footage of the Dunkirk evacuation
  • Listen to pre-recorded interviews with some of the Dunkirk veterans

Catch up now here

17 June 2024 I will be taking part in a Refugee Week  online event with The Anne Frank Trust

More about my books and resources for Refugee Week here.


Meet Me 2024 – In Person Events

I’m dropping in to Cumbrian bookshops for informal signings. All around 4 p.m. Please come and say hello or pre-order signed copies from:

15th @HedgehogBooks

16th @BookendsKeswick

21st @WstonesKendal

Thursday 30 May 2024 11-3pm Imperial War Museum North

Friday 31 May 2024  11-3pm Imperial War Museum London

Free

 


 

6 June 2024 D-Day 80th Anniversary

Reading D-Day Dog and my free resources like blackout poems are a great way to commemorate this year’s 80th Anniversary of D-Day.

More here

17 June 2024 Refugee Week

Refugee Week is a UK-wide festival celebrating the contributions, creativity and resilience of refugees and people seeking sanctuary.

I will be taking part in an online event with The Anne Frank Trust

More about my books and resources for Refugee Week here.


NEW Summer 2024 – Rocky’s Big Move

The exciting sequel in The Soccer Diaries series starring Rocky Race, a British footballer looking to make it big. Rocky Race is going for goal – but what about her grades?

Fourteen, hard as nails and magic on the pitch, Rocky Race is one of the best up and coming young footballers in the UK. But does she have what it takes to make it as a soccer pro in California?

Rocky Race is living the dream: she’s won a scholarship to a prestigious high school in Los Angeles, where she gets to play soccer and train for going pro. She’s got an amazing best friend, and a supportive mum and brother back home in the UK. But living away from home isn’t easy, and fitting in with American kids in high school is scary and new. Not to mention she has to keep her grades up if she wants to stay on the pitch! Will Rocky survive high school?

Order on Amazon here

Discover more here 

“everything that today’s children need as they grow up. It is jam-packed with positive role models, girls involvement in Women’s Football, respect, mental well-being, good work ethic, education and aspiration. Tom Palmer expertly weaves all of this together with friendship, family and a great little plot.”   Books for Topics 


AVAILABILITY : Virtual & In Person Author Visits
Sandringham School

I am delighted to be still going into schools this term for in-person author visits and have availability from Autumn 2024.  More here.

“The impact of last year’s visit was massive and has really helped us develop reading with our current year 6 group. In reading surveys and discussions your books always get a mention and are still read by a lot of the year group.” Green Lane Primary School


New! Audio Books

After the War

 

 

 

 

 

Resist

 

 

 

 

Soccer Diaries 

 

 

 

 

Audio books for my other Barrington Stoke titles will be available from 9 May 2024.  Thank you for listening.


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Buy Books

Signed and dedicated copies of all my books are available personalised to order from my local independent children’s bookshop “The Thoughtful Spot” here. 

With an extra special Christmas or birthday card from me on request!

 

Overseas :
Australia: Boomerang

Canada: Amazon Canada
New Zealand: Wheelers

USA :  Indigo books

Visit myAmazon bookshop or support your local bookshop HIVE

 

 

Schools bumper 33 book pack offer here

33 books
£194 saving £63 – over 25% discount
FREE DELIVERY & SIGNED BOOKPLATES

Please email rosie@rosemaryhillbooks.co.uk

 

Schools class set offer here.

15 copies 20%+ discount
30 copies 25%+ discount
100 copies 30% + discount

FREE DELIVERY & SIGNED BOOKPLATES

Please email rosie@rosemaryhillbooks.co.uk for a quote

 

 

Email me here for more information or use my contact form here to ask me a question.

Thank you.

 

 

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Dunkirk Commemoration Online event

Angel of Grasmere Commemoration Special film

Dunkirk Anniversary – A Commemoration Special with Mr Dilly and Tom Palmer

Catch up now here

 

A commemoration History Special this May as Mr Dilly’s WORLD OF HISTORY presents a perfect event for schools, all children KS2 plus, those interested in WWII history, and curious minds everywhere!

Join Mr Dilly and multi award-winning children’s author Tom Palmer as they co-host and commemorate the WWII events of the evacuation at Dunkirk, and on its publication day, they discuss the story, characters and events behind his latest WWII novel Angel of Grasmere.

Learn about the incredible Dunkirk evacuation during World War II (1939–45) where around 340,000 British, French, and Belgian allied soldiers were rescued from the beaches of Dunkirk in France. See Tom on location from Dunkirk and the Grasmere Fells, discover the story behind the Dunkirk evacuation, and the life-threatening conditions in which the soldiers were being rescued, and be amazed at the bravery of the civilian sailors who helped saved them.

The event features:

– Join Tom Palmer speaking on location from the beaches of Dunkirk and the Grasmere Fells

– Interview and conversation with Mr Dilly and Tom Palmer

– Watch footage of the Dunkirk evacuation

– Listen to pre-recorded interviews with some of the Dunkirk veterans

Discover more about Angel of Grasmere here

Thank you

 

Angel of Grasmere souvenir reader’s pack

To celebrate the forthcoming publication of my latest book, Angel of Grasmere,  I am offering a special souvenir reader’s pack.

 

In Angel of Grasmere, Tarn grapples with the loss of her brother at Dunkirk as she faces the threat of Nazi invasion in the Cumbrian countryside in this gripping wartime tale.

Published by Barrington Stoke
Out 9 May 2024.
9+

Discover more and lots of literacy resources here.

The Souvenir Readers’ Packs contain:

  • a sampler with the first chapter
  • a signed bookplate – with optional dedication “To …”,  if requested below
  • a signed postcard
  • a signed bookplate
  • bookmarks
  • a poster

To request a pack, free of charge, please complete the contact form below.

Thank you! Our replies are never automated.  You will get a personal reply so please be patient with us!

Data protection notice – we respect your privacy and we will not share your details with anyone else.  You may unsubscribe at any time by emailing admin (at) tompalmer (dot) co (dot) uk  or use my simple unsubscribe page here.  If you are under 16, please always make sure to ask a parent for their permission before you give your details to this or any other website.   Please refer to my Privacy Policy and Terms and Conditions for further information.

Buy the Book

Pre-order from your local library, local independent bookshop, 
Waterstones and Amazon

Signed and dedicated copies personalised to order from Sam Read Books, Grasmere here.  www.samreadbooks.co.uk/product/AngelGrasmere/12997

 

DISCOVER more about the inspiration behind Angel of Grasmere here.

Thank you!

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RESPONSES TO ARCTIC STAR

Here is a little gallery of some of the wonderful class and home work already created by children and teachers in response to “Arctic Star”.

I hope they inspire you!

 

 

 

A Cake from Ibstock Place School

St Columbkille’s Blackout Poetry

Amazing display from Stanley Grove

 

Winter 1943. Teenagers Frank,  Joseph and Stephen are Royal Navy recruits on their first mission at sea during the Second World War, on HMS Belfast part of an Arctic convoy sailing to Russia to deliver supplies to the Soviets. The convoys have to navigate treacherous waters, sailing through a narrow channel between the Arctic ice pack and German bases on the Norwegian coast. Faced with terrifying enemy attacks from both air and sea, as well as life-threatening cold, gales and pack ice, will all three boys make it home again?

Buy Books

Signed and dedicated copies of all my books are available personalised to order from my local independent children’s bookshop “The Thoughtful Spot” here. 

With an extra special Christmas or birthday card from me on request!

Overseas :
Australia: Boomerang

Canada: Amazon Canada
New Zealand: Wheelers

USA :  Indigo books

Visit myAmazon bookshop or support your local bookshop HIVE

 

 

Schools bumper 33 book pack
offer here

33 books
£194 saving £63 – over 25% discount
FREE DELIVERY & SIGNED BOOKPLATES

Please email rosie@rosemaryhillbooks.co.uk

 

Schools class set offer here.

15 copies 20%+ discount
30 copies 25%+ discount
100 copies 30% + discount

FREE DELIVERY & SIGNED BOOKPLATES

Please email rosie@rosemaryhillbooks.co.uk for a quote

 

Email me here for more information or use my contact form here to ask me a question.

Thank you.

PRIVACY & COOKIES POLICY                            TERMS & CONDITIONS

RESPONSES TO OVER THE LINE

Here is a little gallery of some of the wonderful class and home work already created by children and teachers in response to “Over the Line”.

I hope they inspire you!
 

Children from Stramongate Primary School in Kendal were inspired by ‘Over the Line’ to create a dance to perform at a dance festival. Tom visited the school to share his stories and engaged in a Q&A session before enjoying a performance of the dance.

The children enjoyed reading ‘Over the Line’ as their class text, as part of their World War I unit of work. Alongside the classroom learning, the children worked with dance artist, Rachel Towe, to explore the themes of the book and use them in the creative process to create a dance. The dance was performed at a local dance festival where primary and secondary schools came together to share and celebrate dance work. The children performed to a public audience of nearly 300 people in a local professional venue, The Brewery Arts Centre, in Kendal. Many of the children had never performed in a professional venue or on stage before.

The dance begins when the outbreak of war is all over the newspapers. The footballers are distracted, their heads are still in the game. Eventually, they sign up. Then they become lost in the horrors of the frontline. The dance also included the extraordinary ceasefire on Christmas day; a magical historical moment that brought football back to the soldier’s life for a fleeting moment. The two opposing sides play football in ‘no man’s land’. Finally, the dance depicts the poppy fields, a symbol of the soldiers who died during WWI.

All involved in the project were excited to share the dance with Tom. They wondered if Tom had ever had a dance created that was inspired by one of his books before.

Dance Artist Rachel Towe explained… As soon as I read Tom’s book ‘Over the Line’, I knew it was going to be a great stimulus for a dance with the Year 6 children I was working with. Many of the children had never danced on stage before, let alone perform on a professional stage. I knew they loved the football and war theme and that it would be great to capture the interest and imagination of that group of children in particular. Sharing the dance with Tom, when he visited the school, was really special – It looked like Tom was quite moved by the performance, and it was a memorable experience for all involved!’

Stramongate Primary pupils also produced cakes and other 3D and 2D representations of Over the Line.  Amazing!

Photos shared with permission.

Over the Line is powerful historical novel about one footballer’s experience in the First World War. It’s 1914 and Jack is making his debut as a professional footballer. But the match is marred by a demonstration demanding that the players sign up to do their duty in France.  It is not long before Jack is bound for the trenches with the Footballers’ Battalion.

“Classic” The Guardian

Find out more about Over the Line and more resources here

Email me here what you thought about Over the Line and for more information about my books or use my contact form here.

Thank you.

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Q&A with Tom about Angel of Grasmere

Firstly, can you tell us a bit about Angel of Grasmere and what first inspired you to write the book?

Tom : It is set in Cumbria – known then as the English Lakes – during WW2. I had heard that – during both wars – some men hid in the mountains to avoid going to fight. I also read that there were genuine fears the Germans could invade by parachuting and landing in gliders on the higher fells. The two things came together and I started thinking what impact that would have on children who lived there then. Angel of Grasmere is the result.

 

How did you find striking the balance between fact and fiction when telling the story?

Tom : Normally I am very focused on basing all scenes on actual events and on the testimony of those who experiences them. This book – although based on real events that happened – is more fictional. I’d say it’s 50/50 real/fiction. It was a lot of fun to do.

 

The story casts a spotlight on the experiences of ordinary Cumbrian people during the early days of World War Two. What made you want to write about here during this particular period of the war? Were there any aspects that were especially important to you to show?

Tom : As wars rage today we see on TV their impact on civilians. I think – as well as showing the horrors of war in aeroplanes, the trenches and at sea – we need to understand what war does to civilians too. I hate war. I want to show how awful it is if we allow it, don’t stop it, even cause it. Civilians are suffering around the world now and I wanted to do what I could to draw from the past so we can think about the present and maybe make a better future.

 

How did you go about your research for the book? What was the most interesting discovery you made?

Tom : Books, films, interviewing very old people who remember the war when they were children. Museums, hikes up mountains. I even spent one night in a tent alone on top of a mountain just so I could get a sense of what my chracters might see and hear and how they would feel in such an extreme place. From all of that the most interesting thing for me was how even in a small country like ours you can walk and camp for hours and hours and not see another person and how lovely that is sometimes.

Find out more about Angel of Grasmere here

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Buy Books

Signed and dedicated copies personalised to order from Sam Read Books, Grasmere here.  www.samreadbooks.co.uk/product/AngelGrasmere/12997

Overseas
Australia: Boomerang

Canada: Amazon Canada
New Zealand: Wheelers

USA :  Indigo books

Visit myAmazon bookshop or support your local bookshop HIVE

Schools bumper 33 book pack offer here

33 books
£194 saving £63 – over 20% discount
FREE DELIVERY & SIGNED BOOKPLATES

Please email rosie@rosemaryhillbooks.co.uk.

 

Schools class set offer here.

15 copies 20%+ discount
30 copies 25%+ discount
100 copies 30% + discount

FREE DELIVERY & SIGNED BOOKPLATES

Please email rosie@rosemaryhillbooks.co.uk for a quote

 

Email me here for more information or use my contact form here to ask me a question.

Thank you.

PRIVACY & COOKIES POLICY                            TERMS & CONDITIONS