I had just finished reading aloud the third book in the Children of the Lamp series by PB Kerr (about two twin djinn children coming of age in a magical world of luck and mischief) called The Cobra King of Kathmandu when my two sons and I saw the web address for PB Kerr and a note that said you could write him an email. My sons and I looked at each other and decided to give it a try.
This is what I wrote (I have edited out my kids’ names here):
Hello Mr. Kerr
My young sons and I just finished reading the third Children of the Lamp book and we loved it!
Ch. (age 6) liked “the name of the book — it sounded cool”. Co. (age 9) “liked the whole book because it was exciting and mysterious.”
We are wondering if you are now writing the fourth book and what it will be about and what is will be called.
Ch. wanted to ask you if John and Phillipa’s mother will come back to them.
We also wonder if Dybukk will get a new friend.
And will John and Phillipa’s father get younger?
Do you think you will ever make a movie out of the books in the series? We were happy to hear that you might be writing at least six in the series.
If you have time, they would love to hear back from you. Meanwhile, we shall look through your website and Weblog.
Kevin H. and sons
This morning, we got the reply:
Thanks for your email. And your very flattering comments about my books. I’m glad you liked them. I figure I must be getting something right, at last. Anyway, I have a lot of fun writing them, and it’s always gratifying to learn that a lot of people have had as much fun reading them. I’m sorry for not replying sooner, but I’ve been on holiday. And since my return I’ve had an epic amount of emails to answer. There will be at least 6 books, I hope, all of them featuring John and Philippa. Book 3 is out in the US now, and it’s called The Cobra King of Kathmandu. Book Four won’t be out until September in which all of your questions will be answered. There will be six books in total. Since you were kind enough to write, then I’m going to send you some signed bookplates. But you’ll need to send me your address. And your full name.
p.s. never forget, books are cool.
My sons were very excited (particularly about the idea of free gifts). Was it actually P.B. Kerr who wrote the email? (The middle section seems to formalized) If so, then he has connected with a small cadre of dedicated readers. And, I was happy to have had any response at all. You can’t beat his postscript.
And now we are in the midst of reading The Tale of the Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo, about a mouse, a rat, the Princess Pea, a bowl of soup, a castle with a dark dungeon and the metaphor of light and darkness. We are totally engrossed in the story.
Peace (with read aloud stories),
PS — Kerr also has a blog: http://www.pbkerr.com/weblog/ that I submitted a comment to but hasn’t yet appeared.