Kris Humphrey

Tipped by tutors on his MA course in Writing for Young People, Kris Humphrey graduated with Distinction and was awarded the prize for Most Promising Writer. Skilfully combining the dramatic, vivid landscapes of Meridina with a fast-paced narrative, A Whisper of Wolves is Kris’s first novel and is out now.

Q: What books did you read when you were a child?
A: Redwall by Brian Jacques was one of the first chapter books I read as a child. It’s fantastic, all about warrior mice defending the monastery where they live against an army of nasty rats and ferrets. I also read The Hobbit when I was about 9 years old. These were the books that fired my imagination and got me hooked on reading.

Q: If you could be a storybook character who would you be?
A: It would be great to be Lyra from Northern Lights by Philip Pullman. She gets to ride on the back of a polar bear and skip between worlds.

Q: What is the best thing about reading?
A: I love how books can transport you and let you see through other people’s eyes. Every book shows you something different, a new way of looking at the world.

Q: What is your all time favourite book?
A: I’d have to say The Hobbit by J R R Tolkien. I remember being incredibly immersed in the story, and when I finished I went and told everyone I could about the amazing characters and what had happened to them. Without it I’d never have started inventing my own worlds or writing my own books.

Q: How big a part did your parents play in encouraging your writing skills?
A: As a family, we always spent a lot of time in the local library. I remember the excitement of being able to choose from all of those books, and I still get that feeling when I go to the library now. The way my mum encouraged me to read as a child had a huge influence on my decision to become a writer.

Q: How do you encourage your children or grandchildren to read, what books do you enjoy reading with them?
A: I don’t have children of my own, but I have a niece and I try to keep her supplied with lots of good books. Picture books like John Klassen’s I Want My Hat Back always go down well because they’re witty in a way that the adults can enjoy, as well as being lots of fun for my niece.

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