Welcome to #TheQuickSixInterview with Kate Foster!
OHMYGOSH! Who doesn’t love a good mystery between a group of daring friends? And who doesn’t love ALL of Kate Foster‘s glorious books! Well, Kate is here to tell us more about another of her wildly fun and heart-warming stories – her latest rollicking middle grade adventure – The Unlikely Heroes Club. An all-inclusive and accepting story about a boy who builds friendships with diverse characters, and strengthens emotional intelligence, with the need for bravery, teamwork, and a great dog rescue plan from a creepy old building. What a spine-tingling, sensational, heroic delight! 🙂
About the Author
Kate Foster is a children’s author writing about friends, family, and dogs.
Originally from a small town in the south east of England, she now lives on the stunning Gold Coast in Australia with her family and second-hand dogs.
She is passionate about encouraging and teaching a wider understanding of autism and mental illness via a positive approach and representation in her books as well as her presentations and talks.
Kate’s other books include the award-winning The Bravest Word, Paws, and just released junior fiction, Harriet Hound.
Please find Kate Foster at her website: www.kfosterbooks.com
The Unlikely Heroes Club can be purchased via Walker Books here and in all good bookstores.
WHO wrote, illustrated and published this book?
Kate Foster, author.
Kristina Schulz, editor.
Jo Hunt, cover designer.
Walker Books Australia, publisher.
WHAT is it about?
Five anxious autistic kids are thrown together for five classes where they’ll learn social skills and how to regulate their emotions – boring! But, while there, they spot something across the road, living in an about-to-be-demolished building. The adults won’t listen to the kids’ concerns, and they’re quickly running out of time to do something about it. So, it’s going to take trust, belief in themselves and each other, and a few broken rules!
What is your favourite part of this book?
The final couple of chapters were an absolute joy to write! The story centres around this daring rescue and whether these kids will be able to pull it off, but the final chapters get to the heart of what it’s really about: friendship, trust, compassion, acceptance.
WHEN did you begin writing this book?
Sometime in 2021, I think.
When is its release / launch date?
Wednesday, July 5th, 2023!
WHERE did the inspiration for this book come from?
From real life classes I attended with my son many years ago. It was such a positive environment where these wonderful and different autistic kids were accepted for who they were, encouraged to be themselves, and loved and cherished and celebrated by everyone.
WHY is this book meaningful to you?
Not only because it’s real life, but because it’s another opportunity for me to take a sledgehammer to harmful stereotypes and notions most people still have about autism. This book is about the children, not their autism. It’s about them not changing, for anyone, but believing in who they are and what they bring to the world. It offers balance, sharing a little insight into life as an autistic child and how that can be tough and confusing, but also the joys and brilliance of having a brain that works differently. Plus, this book stars five autistic kids, not just one, all totally unique.
Why would its message resonate with readers?
Most children, autistic and not, will find a character in this book who they can relate to. Every child is finding their way in life, wondering where they fit it, what kind of person they are, who they can trust and rely on, and this story really centres on this exploration. It’s all about inclusion and acceptance, two essential things kids yearn for, in their own way, and hopefully they’ll find it here, in this book.
HOW do you feel about the illustrations / cover design? How do they convey the feeling or mood you envisioned?
The cover design is a JOY TO BEHOLD! It’s eye-catching, bright and vibrant, which in my opinion reflects the brilliance of each and every autistic child in the story – and in the world! I’m so incredibly lucky that Jo Hunt not only agreed to design it (have you seen some of the books she’s deigned?!) but did such a magnificent job. The book has a Scooby Doo, Enid Blyton vibe, and the cover captures this perfectly.
How have you promoted this book and how can we find it?
The Unlikely Heroes Club is available in most good bookstores (I’ve always wanted to say that!) and libraries across ANZ. And if you can’t find it, ask for it to be ordered in. Here’s a link to the book on the Walker website that will help anyone interested in grabbing a copy: Unlikely Heroes Club, The | Walker Books Australia
Thank you for sharing your captivating story with us, Kate! You’re our hero! 🙂
#thequicksixinterview #theunlikelyheroesclub #autismawareness # #friendship #loveozmg