Summer Reads: Prize giveaway PLUS a monstrously funny Darkmouth interview

Summer is here, the fidget spinners have lost their shine, and you’re looking for just the thing to keep those (lovely, impeccably behaved, definitely not overheated) children out of your hair. Well, we’ve got just the thing. As part of the #HCSummerReads book tour, we’re giving away 10 of the best new books for kids, including the brand new David Walliams book, Michael Bond’s last Paddington book, and… (drum roll please)… the latest and most thrilling novel in the 5* rated fantasy-adventure book series, Darkmouth.

First up, a little bit about the Darkmouth series and why we love it so much.

Darkmouth is an absolutely cracking, very witty, highly immersive fantasy-adventure series by Irish author Shane Hegarty. The story centres around a very reluctant and unlikely hero, 12 year old Finn, a boy who would much rather be a vet than the world’s last Legend Hunter. Minotaurs, manticores, hydra and other monsters of legend are insistent on invading the little Irish town of Darkmouth, and it’s up to Finn to fight them off and save the world. Unfortunately for him (and for the rest of the world!) he is pretty much the most rubbish hero ever. I hate spoilers so I’ll let you discover the rest for yourself!

Check out the trailer – isn’t it AWESOME?!

The fourth book, Hero Rising is out now and is AMAZING… but don’t read it until you’ve had the chance to get to know Finn, Emmie, the terrifying Gantrua and the hilarious little hogboon Broonie in Book 1 (Darkmouth: The Legends Begin). Once you’ve read the first page of Book 1, you’ll be hooked, so you might want to save a few pounds and download the 4-book Darkmouth series for your Kindle instead of buying the books one by one.


Many of you will know that I’m blessed with pretty much the best job ever at HarperCollins Children’s Books. We are a family of bookworms, so getting to peek behind the scenes is an incredible privilege, as is getting to enjoy advance copies of the new books and meet the authors and illustrators.

It does make it difficult, however, to convince you that I’m unbiased when I promote a particular book!
I could go on and on and on about how much you are going to enjoy Darkmouth. How perfect it is for your 8-12 year old boys and girls. How some scenes will leave your kids breathless with laughter while others will have them on the edge of their seats. How, being inspired by the fantastic monsters of legend and an unlikely hero, they’ll go on to delve into myths and legends from all around the world. How you’ll step into your 8 year old’s room to see why it’s so quiet, only to find him creating his very own sequel to the book.

But maybe that’s just me, and hey, maybe I’m biased.

So instead, I want you to watch this hilarious, unscripted video interview with Darkmouth author Shane Hegarty. As he chats about monsters, heroes, giraffes and cupcakes with 8 year old Danger Boy and 10 year old Mads, you’ll see their love of the series is genuine.


We loved every minute of the interview and we hope that you did too. Now, let’s see if you were paying attention… In the video, author Shane Hegarty talks about how the book jacket holds a clue to which legendary monster will make an appearance in Book 4, Darkmouth: Hero Rising.




Subscribe to our ReallyKidFriendly YouTube channel and leave your answer there for your chance to win TEN incredible new kids’ books by some of the best children’s authors in the world, including David Walliams, Michael Morpurgo, Michael Bond, David Baddiel, and of course Shane Hegarty.

That’s right, as part of the HarperCollins Children’s Books Summer Reads Book Tour, one lucky person will win a copy of these ten new books for kids ages 7 to 12:

For your chance to win, you need to:
Watch this video
Subscribe to ReallyKidFriendly’s YouTube channel
– Leave a comment on the video with your answers to both questions!

The competition closes 18 July 2017, noon BST. 

This competition is open to everyone age 13 and over, worldwide. If you are younger and want to enter, please get an adult to enter on your behalf!

Terms and Conditions:

  • You can enter as many times as you like, but please don’t be weird and spammy.
  • Prize draw open to anyone aged 13 and over.
  • No cash alternative
  • Closing date 18 July 2017, at noon BST.
  • Winner will be selected at random by the ReallyKidFriendly team. Our decision is final.
  • Winner will be notified as soon as possible following the closing date.

Written by Janis P.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Cat in the Hat DIY costume - World Book Day

3 DIY World Book Day Costumes You’ll Love

Cars 3 movie

Cars 3 Movie Review