Enid Blyton inspires Blue Peter Book Award winner

From The Telegraph:

Lauren_1838100c Dead Man's Cove by Lauren St John is the story of an 11-year-old orphan sent to live with an uncle in Cornwall, where she turns amateur sleuth. It is the first in a series called The Laura Marlin Mysteries. St John, 44, who was born and raised in Africa, said the book was a tribute to the Enid Blyton stories she loved as a child. “I grew up on a game reserve in Zimbabwe and from a very young age I was obsessed with mysteries and adventures, particularly the Famous Five and Secret Seven books,” she said. “It's funny because I lived in an amazing place yet I was constantly wishing I lived in England so I could get lost in pea-soup fog and sleep in heather beds on the moors and encounter smugglers, just like those characters did. “I suppose Dead Man's Cove is a tip of the hat to the kind of books I loved.”

St John's first children's novel, The White Giraffe, was published in 2007. Her then agent had told her it was unpublishable and she suffered 18 months of rejection letters before it was taken up. Now her books are best-sellers. “I suppose a lot of parents are my age and grew up loving the same kind of mysteries and adventures that I did,” St John said. “The feedback I get from librarians is that there are not enough straightforward adventure stories out there. There is so much magic and fantasy, and these books maybe make people a bit nostalgic.” The Blue Peter judges praised Dead Man's Cove as “an absolutely enthralling and entertaining read that keeps the reader guessing with every page turn”.

More here.