David Macphail Conducts First Reading of the Latest
in His Thorfinn Book Series at SCRF 2019
Scottish author has been capturing young imaginations with his portrayal of ‘polite’ Vikings
Sharjah, 19 April 2019:Can a Viking be polite? Highly improbable, most of us would say. Not for renowned Scottish children’s author, David Macphail, who has nudged young students visiting Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival (SCRF 2019), to see the plundering and dangerous Norse seafarers in an entirely different light.
‘Thorfinn’, the central character in his popular children’s book series, Thorfinn the Nicest Viking, makes it easier to envision this anomaly. The author brought a big surprise to SCRF – the first public reading of the latest in his series, titled Thorfinn and the Dreadful Dragon, which released today.
Through a lively audience interaction, Macphail got a sense of the way people in the room perceive these prehistoric raiders. Strong, attacking, and unruly were the most commonly attributed characteristic. Highly impressed with his audience’s knowledge of the ancient Norse tribes, the author noted: “The Vikings in my books are a bit odd and funny. They are intelligent, kind, polite. Thorfinn, you see, is an excellent maker of tea and scones. He has no interest in raiding or plundering.”
Before beginning to read from his latest creation in the Thorfinn series, he said, “You guys are getting a world premiere of this brand new book. So that’s exciting.” Yet again, his characters weren’t wrestling, belching or catapulting prisoners into the sea. This is a happy lot that have lovely mornings instead of the cliché smelly ones attributed to their tribe.
Ultimately, through his hilariously written and brilliantly illustrated books, David seeks to instil politeness and good manners in young readers through light-hearted literature.
SCRF 2019 is an 11-day cultural extravaganza for children and young adults is being held at Expo Centre Sharjah. Organised by Sharjah Book Authority (SBA), it runs until April 27, under the theme ‘Discover Knowledge’.