MONDAYS ARE MURDER won the 2010 Red House Children's Book Award and the Leeds Book Award ! It was also shortlisted for several regional book awards.
About the Poppy Fields books Tanya writes:
"After writing Apache and The Goldsmithís Daughter Ė serious historical novels for young adults - I felt I needed some light relief. So I turned to crime!
Iíve always enjoyed reading murder mysteries: disentangling the lies, the intrigue, the double bluffs; identifying the red herrings Ė itís as satisfying a completing a huge jigsaw or a tricky crossword puzzle.
The notion of writing murder mysteries of my own Ė Agatha Christie for kids - had been at the back of my head for a while although I hadnít developed the concept. After an operation on my leg I spent a couple of weeks in bed recuperating. It was then that I began to jot down some ideas and once Iíd started they came in thick and fast.
Dreaming up plots is highly addictive. I canít look at an ornament now without wondering if it would make a good blunt instrument, or enter a building without puzzling over where the body might be discovered. And I canít see a stranger on the train without speculating about whether or not they might have a motive for murder.
Iíve had a great time creating this series Ė itís been wonderfully refreshing. I hope people have as much fun reading them as I had writing them."
There's a fantastic trailer for the series here:
Zombies? Spooks? Or just plain murder?
"My name is Poppy Fields. I never believed in ghosts - until I stayed on a remote Scottish island and people started dropping dead all over the place. Was it a spirit taking revenge? When Graham and I investigated we started to see right through it."
That's the way to do it!
"I was dead excited about my first trip to America. But then people started getting themselves killed in really weird ways. Nothing made sense until Graham and I investigated, then the murders seemed to tie together as neatly as a string of sausages. A little too neatly."
"When Graham and I landed parts in a musical we didn't expect real drama. But then the star got a death threat and the bodies started stacking up. Before we knew it, we were at the top of the murderer's list..."
On the trail of a murderer!
"When we deigned a murder mystery trail for the school fayre, it was supposed to be a bit of fun. But before long the head was dead and Graham and I were hunting down a real life killer."
Murder is a beastly business!
"Graham and I were first on the scene at a series of murders at the zoo, but who was behind them? We had to prowl around a bit to investigate - and what we saw was not pretty. How would we escape before we, too, became dead meat?"
Roll up, roll up!
"When the circus came to town, the posters promised certain death. This made Graham and me suspicious, and we were proved right when someone was killed in the ring. With the circus performers still in grave danger, we had to work fast to discover who was firing the shots."
Words can be dangerous.
"When Graham and I offered to help out at our local literary festival we had no idea just how murky the world of children's books really was. Before you could say crime novel the authors were receiving anonymous threats. Then fiction started turning into fact..."
"When Graham and I jetted off to the celebrity wedding of the century, I couldn't believe our luck. Sun, sea, scandal - what more could anyone wish for? But then things turned nasty, and when people started dropping like lies it was time to investigate..."
Murder's no walk in the park.
"When Graham and I embarked on a summer of dog-walking, we hardly expected high drama. But our fellow dog-walkers started to receive nasty surprises through their letterboxes, and then one of them was murdered! A killer was on the loose, and it was up to us to sniff them out...
Families can be a killer.
"When Graham and I were roped in to help at a christening party we didn't expect events to take a grave turn. First we discovered a dead tramp in the graveyard, then we were stranded by a storm and realized we were trapped in a mansion with a murderer..."