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Film critic sets historical adventure on Scilly

An acclaimed TV and film critic has published a book set on the Isles of Scilly.

Scilly Seasons: Volume 1 of The Island Kingdom is the first of a new historical adventure series aimed at teenagers by Chris Tookey.

The book begins the story of how a disabled shepherd boy and a determined kitchen maid rose to become King and Queen of Britain. The young Arthur and Guinevere take on bugbears, sea monsters, werespiders and tommyknockers in what is billed as a "uniquely exciting and humorous epic adventure".

The synopsis reads in part: "Learn about the amazing rise of Arthur and Guinevere, and those who helped them, including Mrs Scraggs, a bad-tempered, one-legged witch, and Snow White’s eighth dwarf, the malodorous Drains.

"Did you know that Merlin had two brothers, Buzzard and Osprey? Or that Snow White had an affair with Attila the Hun?"

Chris grew up in Oxford, now lives and works between London, Norfolk and Tresco. He said of the book: "I wanted to create a mythology for England. But my take on ancient fantasy is a much more comic, offbeat one that reflects our more sceptical era. I examined whether our most cherished national myths might not be the result of somebody trying to put a spin on reality and selling us all an awful lot of fake news.”

As well as spending 20 years as a film critic at the Daily Mail and several other national newspapers, Chris has published five books about film criticism, created a major film website, directed and composed the theme music for several TV shows and staged 12 musicals and a ballet. He frequently presents film programmes for BBC Radio 4.


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