January can often be a month of ‘staying in’, following on from Christmas excesses (both financial and dietary!); and with the cold weather here for a while longer, what better than to curl up with a good read. The Mill Road area has been blessed with a few local authors, at least three of whom have recently published books…
Local resident Tom Morgan-Jones is an award winning illustrator. I first met Tom a few years ago when he was visiting my friend and neighbour with whom he had co-created the board game ‘War On Terror’ (great fun to play, though I think my parents were a little taken aback when I bought it for them as a Christmas present!) and since then he has worked on numerous projects. His work can be seen in all manner of places and one of his most recent publications is ‘Mission: Explore Food’, which he both co-authored – along with other members of the Geography Collective – and illustrated. The book aims to change the way children think about food and teaches them everything from growing food and cooking it to eating and food waste. It’s a family book and includes over 150 ‘missions’ for children to complete. Tom has lived just off Mill Road for over fifteen years now and whilst doing his research for the book he spoke to local butchers Andrew Northrop’s. He tells me that they were extremely helpful and really helped the book to become what it is – so where better to get your copy than on Mill Road itself! ‘Mission: Explore Food’ written by The Geography Collective & illustrated by Tom Morgan-Jones. Hardback, available from Andrew Northrop’s (114 Mill Road, CB1 2BQ) priced £20. Also available to order online via the Guardian Bookshop.
Celia Anderson is a writer and web designer who runs her own copywriting business in Devon, but her roots are firmly steeped in Cambridge and she has lived on Mill Road itself – in fact she describes herself as somewhat of a Mill Road fanatic (and I know she still misses the Black Cat Café!). I have known Celia for many years though have not seen her for a while – during which time she has had two children (where does the time go!). Combining her love of writing with her new-found experience of motherhood inspired her to start her blog – 2under2 – back in 2012. This has been hugely popular and so she has now published a digital book all about her experiences – ‘Two under two: coping with a baby and a toddler’. It’s a personal and empathetic guide to coping with a toddler and a newborn and has plenty of useful tips as well as interviews with other parents of two under two.
‘Two under two: coping with a baby and a toddler’ by Celia Anderson. Available for download on Amazon, priced £5.73.
Joan Court is a local writer and campaigner with a passion for animal welfare. She lives in the Mill Road area and is a confirmed vegan and cat lover who is very much part of her local community. I first met Joan some time ago and she is one of the most active people I know (which considering her 93 years, puts many of us to shame!). Although much of her time is currently taken up with running campaigns for Animal Rights Cambridge (which she co-founded in the late 1970’s), she has had a varied career that has seen her work as a district midwife in wartime London, witness Indian independence, attend fasts with Mahatma Gandhi, pioneer birth control in Pakistan, retrain as a social worker and at the age of 86 become a crew member on the Farley Mowat (as part of Sea Shepherd) – as well as gaining a degree in social anthropology from New Hall (now Murray Edwards College) here in Cambridge and a masters degree in social work. Joan has recently published her third book – ‘Animals Betrayed’ – which has interviews with a number of animal rights activists and campaigners, and gives an insight into many of the issues that have affected animal welfare over the years.
‘Animals Betrayed’ by Joan Court. Paperback, published by Selene Press and priced £12.50 (+£2 p&p). Please phone (01223) 311828 to order your copy.
Luckily you can get your hands on copies of all the above books without ever having to leave Mill Road – happy reading!