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Karen Mccombie - Author

About the Author

Karen McCombie grew up in Aberdeen, Scotland, where she learnt to walk at an angle of 45 degrees against the biting north wind. Her hobbies were drawing, keeping scrapbooks, writing short stories and wearing thermal underwear (except for the three days in summer when it was warm). Her primary-school teacher, Miss Thompson, once told Karen that she should be an author when she grew up. Karen thinks Miss Thompson was only trying to be nice, but is very, very glad she turned out to be right.

As an adult, Karen studied graphic design and communication, before landing a job as a trainee magazine journalist at a Scottish publisher. A few years later, she packed up all her worldly possessions and cat, Cecy, and headed to London for a job with teen magazine Just 17. She worked for several other magazines - including Sugar - before she thought about trying to write a book. She still lives in London, writing books for a living (hurray!), surrounded by cats as well as a husband, who likes to type silly lines into her stories when she's not looking. Karen and her husband have a lovely little daughter called Milly, who thinks her mum's job is to make Playdough cookies.

As an artist, Karen is the author of the best-selling Ally's World series, as well as the Stella Etc. books and Marshmallow Magic and the Wild Rose Rouge. She's also written several books for older teens, including My Funny Valentine and In Sarah's Shadow. Karen loves writing and her fattest cat, Bysshe, loves to watch her writing. The only problem is, he likes to get right up close, and often the keyboard disappears under folds of ginger fur as Bysshe settles himself down for a purr and a stare.

Featured books by Karen Mccombie

Other books by Karen Mccombie

Honey and Me

Honey and Me

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 18/07/2019

Things haven't been great for Kirsten recently - she's had to start at a new school where she doesn't know anybody, and home hasn't been a great place to be either with Mum and Dad arguing all the time. At least she has her old friend Honey to talkto. But her new friends have lots of questions about Honey...and her older brother Finn might just spill the beans about this special friend! Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 8+

Little Bird Flies

Little Bird Flies

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 10/01/2019

Bridie lives on the remote Scottish island of Tornish, the youngest of three sisters. Although she loves her island, with its wild seas and big skies, she guiltily nurses a secret dream of flight - to America and the freedom of the New World. But her family are struggling under the spiteful oppression of the new Laird, and it seems that even some of the Laird's own household are desperate to leave. When the Laird's full cruelty becomes apparent, there's no more time for daydreams as Bridie needs to help the people she loves escape to safety. The first in a gripping, dramatic new series from much-loved author, Karen McCombie.

St Grizzle's School for Girls, Gremlins and Pesky Guests

St Grizzle's School for Girls, Gremlins and Pesky Guests

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 09/08/2018

When a flood closes the village school, Lulu invites the staff and pupils to come and join them at St Grizzle's. Dani and her friends can't believe their bad luck - it was awful enough bumping into Spencer and his cronies in the village but now they've got to share lessons with them. Before long pupils are clashing with pupils, there are pranks aplenty and even the teachers aren't getting along. Rehearsals get underway for the school show but with tempers fraying it's soon looking like a big failure. Determined that the show will go on, Lulu calls on Dani and co, as the oldest children in the school, to set a good example and make friends. But with Spencer up to his usual tricks, can the two rival groups put aside their differences long enough to turn a disaster into a triumph? This warm, funny series based in the maddest of mad boarding schools, is perfect for fans of SCARLET AND IVY and A MURDER MOST UNLADYLIKE. Fizzing with mayhem - Sally Morris, The Daily Mail

St Grizzle's School for Girls, Geeks and Tag-along Zombies

St Grizzle's School for Girls, Geeks and Tag-along Zombies

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/03/2018

When Arch turns up at St Grizzle's, Dani is delighted to introduce her best friend to her new classmates. But she soon discovers that mixing her old life with her new one isn't quite as easy as she'd imagined. And Arch isn't the only new pupil - there's also super-smart Boudicca, who barely says a word to anyone. It's only when she meets Arch that she perks up and takes to following him everywhere he goes. Then she disappears. With the help of Granny Viv, it's up to Dani and Arch to find Boudicca ... and unravel the truth about this shy tag-along zombie. This warm, funny series based in the maddest of mad boarding schools, is perfect for fans of SCARLET AND IVY and A MURDER MOST UNLADYLIKE.

The Mystery Of Me

The Mystery Of Me

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/07/2017

Ketty was technically dead for two minutes and thirty-nine seconds according to the doctors who saved her. She's on the mend yet can't remember anything about her life before the accident. But people are treating her really weirdly and Ketty just can't shake the feeling that something is terribly wrong. When her new friend Otis reveals that pre-crash Ketty was a spiteful bully, she faces a tough decision. What kind of person can she be now? Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 8+

St Grizzle's School for Girls, Ghosts and Runaway Grannies

St Grizzle's School for Girls, Ghosts and Runaway Grannies

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/06/2017

When local schools are asked to make a film showcasing the surrounding area, Dani and the rest of St Grizzle's set to work. But Spencer and his mates at the village school are determined to sabotage the work of the smelly Grizzlers. To Dani's surprise, help comes in the form of Granny Viv who has secretly taken up residence in the school's tree house with Downboy the dog. Together they come up with the perfect ghostly video ... but will Granny Viv be able to stay once the competition's over?

The Pearl in the Attic

The Pearl in the Attic

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/06/2017

A story of family, friendship and mystery from oneof the UK's best-loved writers. When Scarlet's grandma goes into a retirement home, she must sort through her belongings in the cramped flat above a shop in Crouch End, north London. Here Scarlet comes across a real treasure: a novel that Gran wrote, imagining the life of a girl just like Scarlet, who once upon a time lived in the flat and worked in a cakeshop downstairs. But as Scarlet reads about Ruby's life in Victorian London, she begins to realise this is no piece of fiction - Ruby was real! A real life, facing real danger - and a mystery that unravels to the present day. BOOKS BY KAREN MCCROMBIE Catching Falling Stars Life According to Alice B Lovely Pearl In the Attic

Oxford Reading Tree All Stars: Oxford Level 10: Stanley Stone Rocks!

Oxford Reading Tree All Stars: Oxford Level 10: Stanley Stone Rocks!

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 23/02/2017

Frank is shy and worried about making friends at his new school. He finds a special stone, and names it Stanley. But what will Frank's new classmates think of Stanley Stone? Oxford Reading Tree All Stars is an engaging chapter fiction series which combines age-appropriate content with imaginative stories, perfect for inspiring and stretching able infants. The series develops comprehension skills and provides a wide variety of fiction topics and styles, alongside illustrations that aid understanding. All the books in this series are carefully levelled, so it's easy to match every child to the right book - one which will develop their reading skills and fuel their love of reading. Help with children's reading development is also available at www.oxfordowl.co.uk.

St Grizzle's School for Girls, Goats and Random Boys

St Grizzle's School for Girls, Goats and Random Boys

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 12/01/2017

When Dani's mum gets the chance to study penguins in the Antarctic, she decides the best place for eleven-year-old Dani is a strict girls' boarding school where - uh-oh! - students wear smart uniforms that includes SKIRTS! Having failed to change Mum's mind, Dani finds herself having to say goodbye to Granny Viv, her dog Downboy and best friend Arch. But when they arrive at St Grizelda's it seems that there's been some drastic changes; gone are the uniforms and the rules, and in are chaos, anarchy and, er, goats. Surely Mum's not going to leave her at the mercy of a crazy head-butting goat, a bunch of eight-year-olds masquerading as mutant goblins and a head teacher wearing a crown of picnic cutlery? But as a homesick Dani waits for Mum to make alternative arrangements, the madness of St Grizzle's begins to warm Dani's heart... With a definite whiff of St Trinian's about it, St Grizzle's is a laugh-out-loud middle grade read by best-selling author Karen McCombie, perfect for fans of A Murder Most Unladylike and Scarlet and Ivy.

The Whispers of Wilderwood Hall

The Whispers of Wilderwood Hall

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 02/06/2016

Ellis is losing track of time... Following her mother's marriage to a famous rock star, Ellis moves to a crumbling old mansion in the wilds of Scotland. Far away from her friends and familiarity, she finds waves of anxiety rolling in and threatening to capsize her. But when she finds herself whisked back to the world of 1912 where she meets lonely servant girl Flora, Ellis finally feels like she's home. But living in the past might not be as perfect as it seems... and is there more to hope for in the present than she first thought? A stunning new novel from much-loved author Karen McCombie, The Whispers of Wilderwood Hall will take you from the heart of the highlands to the top deck of the Titanic.

The OMG Blog

The OMG Blog

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 11/04/2016

Four 'good' girls meet in detention and are encouraged to take part in a school blogging competition together. Ideas are few and far between but then they realise they have one BIG thing in common and the project is born - the '(O)ur (M) ums - (G)rrr' Blog. As they pour out frustrations and niggles online, the blog gets more and more popular. But will the mums find them out? Bang-on-trend story from a hugely popular and successful author.

The Black Bull Band 14/Ruby

The Black Bull Band 14/Ruby

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/01/2016

When Flora dreams of happiness, she doesn't expect to be thrown on to the back of a great, black bull! But as Flora and the bull travel from glen to glen, is the silent beast all that he seems? Ruby/Band 14 books give increasing opportunities for children to develop their skills of inference and deduction. Text type: A traditional tale Curriculum links: English: fairy stories, myths and legends; books from other cultures and traditions This book has been quizzed for Accelerated Reader.

Catching Falling Stars

Catching Falling Stars

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/06/2015

It's 1940. Gloria and her little brother have been evacuated to the countryside to get away from the dangers of the Blitz in London. But their new home isn't as friendly as they'd hoped. The woman they're living with, Miss Saunders, is strict, severe and an outcast in the village. And the local children and other evacuees are equally unwelcoming and mocking. But Gloria quickly learns that nothing is ever as it seems in this strange new place. As possible friends turn out to be enemies, and once sworn enemies might be the best possible friends, Gloria finally realizes that believing first impressions could mean missing out on the friendships that can last a lifetime.

Candy Girl

Candy Girl

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/06/2015

Dixie's landed a dream work experience placement at Candy magazine. But rather than interviewing celebs and mingling with models, Dixie spends all her time making tea! And then the problem page editor makes her read all the letters from readers. Worse still, Dixie finds a letter from her own sister. What will she do? Heartfelt drama, perfect for tweens. Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 8+

Running from the Rainbow

Running from the Rainbow

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 04/06/2015

Rosie Roberts has a secret. So when she moves to a new school, she's desperate not to draw too much attention to herself. But things aren't so easy when your Mum is the popular new teacher everyone is talking about...Heartfelt drama, perfect for tweens. Particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 8+

Life According to... Alice B. Lovely

Life According to... Alice B. Lovely

Author: Karen Mccombie Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 02/04/2015

Edie Evans is sick of being treated like a kid. And she doesn't, repeat, doesn't need a babysitter! And then along comes the strange, the shy, the captivating Alice B. Lovely. But is she too good to be true?