I just thought, you know what? I’m never going to get published, so I’m just going to write absolutely what I want to write.

Liz Hyder, author
Liz Hyder

Liz Hyder is an award winning novelist and arts PR consultant. Read how she came up with the idea for BEARMOUTH – her inspired YA novel – in an excellent interview in The Guardian.

BEARMOUTH was a work of passion that took just four weeks to write: “I cried quite a lot when I wrote it. It was very intense. I hope it encourages other people to take more risks in terms of what they write and also what is published, because it is an unusual book.”

Unusual is something of an understatement. The language throughout is a creation of Hyder’s imagination, and the world it depicts shows the horrifying truth of tiny children working in coal mines. Dark as their world is, the children draw hope from their Mayker’s Prayer, intoned every Sunday:

“An one day, tis sed, the Mayker will give us a sine
We will all be foregivven
An we will rise up to the land
An the lyte that the Mayker holds there in his parm
Will be givern to all o us
An all shall prosper in this life an the next.”

• Bearmouth by Liz Hyder is published by Pushkin Children’s Books. To order a copy, go to guardianbookshop.com, Waterstones and plenty of other good book sellers.

I love this book. It’s impossible to pigeon-hole and impossible to put down.

Geraldine Hill

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