We are bursting with excitement that we can announce that Alex English’s middle-grade adventure Sky Pirates: Echo and the Great Beyond has been snapped up by Lucy Rogers, senior commissioning editor at Simon & Schuster Children’s UK. World English rights were sold by Thérèse Coen. Sky Pirates: Echo and the Great Beyond, is the first in an exciting new series, filled with memorable characters, thrilling adventures and fantastical places and will publish as a lead debut in July 2020. The second novel is set to follow in 2021.

Sky Pirates: Echo and the Great Beyond follows eleven year-old Echo, a girl who has grown up believing that nothing exists outside the Kingdom of Albion, but everything changes when an eccentric professor parks his airship outside her window armed with a map that shows all the magical places that exist beyond the city walls. Together with her pet lizard, Gilbert, Echo sets off on an incredible adventure to find her missing mother; an adventure that will take her to unimaginable places…’

Alex said: “I couldn’t be happier that Sky Pirates has found such a fabulous home with Simon & Schuster. Echo and the Great Beyond has been brilliant fun to write, and I can’t wait for young readers to meet Echo and discover her adventures for themselves.”

Lucy said: “Carnivorous plants, giant butterflies, mechanical dragons and, of course, sky pirates! Alex has created a world bursting with imagination and wonder. It’s a world I would have adored to visit as a child and I know readers are going to be utterly enchanted by Echo Quickthorn’s adventures.’

Alex English grew up in Hampshire with her head in the clouds and her nose in a book, secretly hoping to find Narnia every time she opened a wardrobe. After a maths degree and a few years wrangling spreadsheets, she decided to revisit her first love – children’s books. Alex graduated with distinction from the MA Writing for Young People at BSU and currently lives with her family just outside Paris.

You can read the full Book Brunch article here.