English Language Teaching graded readers are stories for students learning English as a Foreign Language (EFL). The aim is to encourage extensive reading outside the classroom environment and reading for pleasure. The language is ‘graded’ according to the level of the learner – hence, the term graded readers.
I was commissioned by National Geographic/Cengage Learning to write the following two books for their Page Turners series of original language learner fiction. Both books have been recognised in the Extensive Reading Foundation’s Awards for Language Learner Literature.
A New Song for Nina (2015)
Synopsis: Twenty-five-year-old Nina Cross loves music, so she is happy when she gets a job with the Jambox Music Festival. When she sees the band Breakdown, she knows she must have them play for the festival–especially when she finds out that the drummer is her first boyfriend, Craig! Before long, Nina realizes that her feelings for him haven’t gone away… A New Song for Nina was a Winner in the 2016 Language Learner Literature Awards.
This is a truly original story. The writing is so good you really feel you know the characters … it really FEELS like extensive reading! Judge’s comment
There are a lot of simple stories about love between two people, but there are Nina and two men in this book. This relationship is more complex so it is interesting. Reader’s comment
Oscar’s Journey (2013)
Synopsis: Young Oscar Keen is forced to take over his father’s biscuit factory, despite his dreams of becoming an artist. Then something happens that puts the business in trouble, and he finds the problems are deeper than anyone imagined. The resulting investigation reveals the truth about the business…and about Oscar himself.
Oscar’s Journey was a Finalist in the 2014 Language Learner Literature Awards.
This well-told story is set in London at the beginning of the 20th century. Although the work world and means of travel were different at that time than they are today, the author expresses in accessible modern language topics that are as relevant today as in the past. Judge’s comment
… the story develops beautifully to help Oscar’s transformation. I appreciated the love story for its sentimental as well as practical value … Having a victorious “couple” without the happy ending brings a nice balance of power between sexes as well as a touch of realism. Sophie Muller, Goodreads, 4/5