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Jo Cotterill

Jo Cotterill

Meet the Author

Do you think that all children dream of being a superhero at some point? Did you?

I think every child wishes for superpowers, yes. Even if it’s something like making your teacher disappear, or fast-forwarding to tomorrow so you don’t have to sit a test. Others would like to be invisible so they could spy on their enemies; I’m sure I wished for all of those powers at some point – though I don’t think I ever really wanted to be a superhero. Malorie Blackman did – she took a costume with her to school for years, just in case!

What was the thinking behind introducing ‘comic-style’ pages for part of Electrigirl’s narrative?

It just seemed like a really obvious thing to do. Superheroes are very much a comics-based invention, but I haven’t written for comics and also, to be honest, I didn’t think an entirely graphic superhero book would appeal to mainstream children’s publishers. But it’s cool to be able to tell a story in different ways, so it just made sense to use prose for Holly’s ‘ordinary’ life, and comic strip for her ‘superhero’ life. And Cathy Brett has done a stupendous job in bringing the comics to life.

Is there a serious message about smartphones for young children to be taken from Holly’s adventure?

I’m not really into giving serious messages through my fictional stories (unless it’s BE NICER, everyone!) so no, I wasn’t trying to make a point about smartphones as such. Technology is just such a part of all our lives now that it seemed an obvious way for the villain to develop her dastardly plan. World domination is, of course, ALWAYS the end goal – smartphones just happen to be one of the ways she plans to do it...

What is going to happen to Holly and her friends next?

In ELECTRIGIRL AND THE DEADLY SWARM (out in August 2016), Holly, Joe and Imogen go on holiday in Cornwall to recover from the events of book 1. And a new friend introduces them to a curious flying creature…could this be a REAL Cornish piskie? But surely piskies don’t carry a deadly sting that causes the victim to crave danger…do they? I had SO much fun writing this adventure for Holly and co; and it’s another brilliant cover design by Cathy Brett and the team at OUP.

Books by Jo Cotterill

Articles by Jo Cotterill