When I first came across the Sam, Sebbie & Di-Di-Di series of children’s books written by author David Seow, I was instantly drawn to them because they are about the adventures of a little girl and her two younger brothers and the beautifully-illustrated book covers reminded me so much of Anya, Adam and David. The books are published by Epigram Books and illustrated by Soefara Jafney and I will be reviewing all the books in the series.
I really wanted to begin my series of book reviews with an interview with the author and he was kind enough to answer some questions I had for him. David Seow is a well-known children’s book writer and a staple on the Singapore literary scene. He is an award-nominated children’s book author of over 20 children’s books, including the Sam, Sebbie and Di-Di-Di series, Alexander’s Adventure Machine, and The Littlest Emperor. His latest books are There’s Soup on My Fly!, Blow A Kiss, If I Were a Blue Kangaroo, and Emma’s Elephant.
Q: What inspired you to write your first book?
A: My niece and nephews Sam, Sebbie and Jeremy (Di-Di-Di) inspired me to start writing the books. I used to babysit them every weekend and I had to read to them at bedtime. Each of them wanted me to read a stack of picture books to them and so to make things simple, I started coming up with stories about them which they seemed to like.
Q: How much of the book is realistic?
A: The stories were first published in 1998 when the children were toddlers. My youngest nephew, Xandy was born after I started writing. The books that are currently available are re-illusrated and edited versions of the books.There were things that I wasn’t happy about with the original series and I was happy that Epigram Books approached me about revamping the series. I think Epigram Books has done an amazing job with the series. They’ve paired me up with an amazing editor and a fantastic illustrator. I love working with them but they may not feel the same way. I can be hard work! LOL.
Q: What are your current projects? Can you share a little of your current work with us?
A: I have just finished a big commissioned project and I’m working on the sequel to my book A Day with the Duchess which is about Sam, Sebbie, Di-Di-Di and Xandy visiting the royals in London.
Q: Who is your favourite children’s author and what is it that you like about his/ her work?
A: I don’t have one particular favourite author. I like Naomi Kojima, Susanna Goho-Quek, Norm Jorgensen, Chris Cheng, Sarah Mousey, Sheri Tan, AJ Low, Emily Lim, James Foley and Mo Willems. Each of them have very strong voices in their stories which resonate with children and adults alike. They have a sense of fun and that’s what every children’s book should have. That’s the most important part of a children’s book.
Q: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
A: Thanks for reading my books. I hope you like them. Please buy more!! :)
Disclaimer: We received the books from Epigram Books for review purposes. All opinions are my own.