Friday 11 November 2022

Jump! by JG Nolan, illustrated by Carina Roberts BLOG TOUR #Jump @JGNolan3 @sergarcreative @RandomTTours #BookExtract


Robbie Blair is a talented young schoolboy who dreams of being a professional football player when he grows up. He possesses the necessary skills but unfortunately is also set apart from the pack by his tendency to break bones - lots of them!

When Robbie breaks his leg for the third time during an important trial he is resigned to the grim reality that his footballing dream is finally over.

But, is it over?

Jump! by JG Nolan, illustrated by Carina Roberts was published on 11 August 2022 by Silverwood Books. As part of this #RandomThingsTours Blog Tour, I am delighted to share a short extract from the book with you today.

Extract from Jump! by JG Nolan

It was neither dark nor stormy. 
There was nothing in the sky.
Nothing in the calm waters of the Clyde estuary, that lay, uninterested, observing in the distance.
It wasn't like it was in one of those old books that Robbie was still too young to read.
Because this wasn't a book.
This was real.
And in real life there are no clues in the sky.

Robbie was not to know, as he walked onto the football pitch of Our Holy Redeemer's Primary School for his debut game, that he would break his femur for the third time. He was not to know, as he shook hands with the captain, as the referee blew the whistle, as the seagulls squawked high above him as they always did, that within minutes he would be taken to the ground with a bruising swipe to his thigh that would leave his leg shattered in two and finally end his dreams of being a footballer.  He was not to know any of this until it happened. Because this was not a book.

JG Nolan was born and raised in a sleepy village in Shropshire and loved writing stories and playing football as a child.

He has been a teacher for many years, working mainly with children who have had difficult beginnings in life. 

He strongly believes in positive thinking and feels most things are achievable if you put your mind to it.

When his football mad son, Robbie, was much younger, he kept breaking bones and was told by the doctors that he should never play football again. I

t was during one of his many lengthy stays visiting Robbie in the local children's hospital that the idea for 'Jump!' drifted into JG Nolan's mind.

JG Nolan began to read the exploits of famous, maverick footballers from the past, to inspire his son and give him hope. Whilst doing this, he became more and more drawn to the tales of famous Celtic legends from the 1920s, whose names are still chanted in Parkhead to this day. 

It soon became clear to him- his first book would have to be set in Scotland.

JG Nolan's research led him to discover the iconic, ethereal, Cathkin Park.

After meeting Scottish actor Simon Weir, who has helped preserve the park for many years, the pieces of the jigsaw fell into place and 'Jump!' was born.

When JG Nolan's son started on his long road to recovery and fitness, his determination to succeed reached the ears of famous local footballer Joe Hart, then at Manchester City. Joe very kindly sent Robbie some signed goalkeeper gloves to cheer him up during treatment. 

Robbie would eventually follow in Joe's footsteps and attend the same secondary school in their home town, Shrewsbury. Years later, after Joe had transferred to Celtic, he was thrilled to be asked to read 'Jump!' and offered to write the foreword. A truly serendipitous chain of events!

Carina Roberts is an award-winning artist and illustrator who loves creating characters and telling stories. 

Carina spent her childhood drawing, reading and befriending animals - it was in these first few years that her dream to be an illustrator was born. 

She's been running with it ever since!

She specialises in creating books, particularly for young readers - a lot of her inspiration comes from the wilds of Wales where she lives. 

She adores fiction and nonfiction alike - after working on illustrations for the National Trust in 2020 she is especially keen that her work encourages more people to go on an adventure.

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