Nick Tomlinson: The Ghouls of Howlfair (Walker Books 2019)
Nick Tomlinson: Molly Thompson and the Crypt of the Blue Moon (Walker Books 2020)
Nick Tomlinson works as a teacher and moved from Birmingham to the Welsh border near Hay-on-Wye, where he still lives with his wife. He had always wanted to write, but after he was seriously determined to do it, it took him 11 years to publish his first book and another 15 to accept the second one for publication. On the long journey so far, he said, he made every imaginable mistake. He has loved horror books since he was a child because he was shy and weird at the time and, in horror stories often the protagonists discover unsettling and dangerous things, other people don’t take them seriously because they are shy and weird…
His protagonist, Molly, an amateur historian, has always been interested in scary creatures like ghouls and werewolves. It has many questions, but there are plenty of resources to research as the city of Howlfair attracts tourists with its frightening legends. Since her discoveries have so far reveal not monsters but the secrets of the townspeople, her mother forbids further investigations. Unfortunately, an old prophecy is about to come true, which could ruin not only the city but the entire world. Since no one believes her, Molly can only count on a few friends in trouble. The story was written for kids, but it was really scary. Two volumes of the series have been published so far, but more hair-raising adventures are likely to await the protagonist.
Molly’s figure was inspired by the author’s students, who read a lot but couldn’t find their place, they always felt awkward. He wanted to show them that they could be weird, shy, sometimes useless and still be unstoppable in achieving their goals.