I am so pleased to be talking to you about Abiola Bello’s new book, the third in the Emily Knight Series – I Am Becoming, as part of the Blog Tour with publicists Literally PR and Hashtag Press publishers, and my spot on the tour is extra special as it’s also Publication Day!
I was very kindly sent a gorgeous signed copy of this book – just look at that striking cover! Although I’m not reviewing this one just yet, because I want to start reading at the beginning of the series, I wanted to write a blog post about it because I’m so excited by the author and everything that she is doing to promote diversity in children’s reading. And this is EXACTLY the type of book that I want to be reading with my daughters. So, firstly I’ll give you the blurb on the book and then I’ll tell you all about the wonderful author Abiola Bello.
The blurb …
Homecoming. Sacrifice. Family. Fire
The Knights are finally reunited and ready to defeat Neci once and for all. But Neci is one step ahead and is targeting them one by one. When Neci takes one of Emily’s best friends hostage, Emily leads the elite team on a rescue mission but nothing can prepare them for what Neci has planned.
Book 3 in the best-selling, award-winning, CILIP Carnegie Medal nominated fantasy series.
You can read about the first two books in this series at the end of this post.
‘Emily Knight is back in all her brilliant, brave glory! She’s a fabulously inspirational heroine.’
Joanne Owen, LoveReading4Kids
‘If you haven’t checked out this series for you or your children then WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR!?’
Popthebutterfly Book Reviews
‘A.Bello represents the long-awaited evolution of diversity in the literature world. Creating a character like Emily Knight who provides YA readers of colour their own heroine to look up to! Really excited about this series!
The British Blacklist
The Emily Knight series is aimed at children around the ages of ten to fifteen years old (and beyond because I can’t wait to read them!) and would be a fantastic book to read in a school setting; there are even classroom discussion questions at the back of the book.
About the author …
A. Bello is an award-winning author and publishing entrepreneur, born and raised in London, where she still lives and works.
In 2018, Abiola was named ‘Trailblazer of the Year’ by London Book Fair. Abiola wrote her first novel at the age of eight – when she fought monsters and dragons on a daily basis – and experienced her first taste of ‘being published’ after winning a school poetry competition at the age of 12. Seeing her words in print fuelled a passion for writing that remains to this day.
The first incarnation of the Emily Knight story can be traced back almost 20 years; Abiola wanted to fill the gaping hole in children’s fiction for an inspirational, strong, black, female, young protagonist. This ‘gap’ in publishing remains in today’s publishing world despite continued calls for more diversity in terms of the authors creating the books and the characters and plot lines within the stories.
She is the founder of The Lil’ Author School and co-founder of The Author School (shortlisted for The Great British Entrepreneur Awards 2016 and celebrating its fifth birthday in 2020). Abiola is also co-founder of The Diverse Book Awards and Hashtag BLAK. Abiola is regularly asked to contribute to the media; she has been featured in About Time Magazine, Cosmopolitan, Female First, Daily Mirror, BBC1XTRA, The Bookseller, The British Blacklist, Melan Magazine, London Post, and many more.
Abiola is also a regular at literary festivals and gives talks to children in primary and secondary schools, as well as to young writers and people wishing to get into the publishing business.
Make sure to follow the rest of the tour by checking out the other bloggers involved …
The first two books in the Emily Knight series are …
Emily Knight, I Am …
How does it feel to be different and misunderstood? And who cares? Emily Knight is young and famous, self-aware and intelligent. But what if the one thing that makes Emily different also makes her a target for evil? Can she defend herself…and everything she loves?
Emily Knight, I Am Awakened …
Dark times are upon us. Neci is back and she is more dangerous than ever. The warriors are forced to pick a side and to stand up for what theybelieve in. The race is on to find the missing warrior first. It’s the onlyway to prevent a war from happening and to stop Neci fromdestroying everything. Emily Knight has to get sharper, stronger and fasterbecause Neci has made her a target and someone is going to great lengths to hurt her. Can Emily win the race? Or will Neci take her down once and for all?
Thank you so much for reading my blog post and let me know in the comments if you have any more #WeNeedDiverseBooks recommendations!