Shropshire Star

Author takes book on a trial run

When a children's author wanted some focus testing on her new book, it only made sense for her to go to her own child's nursery.

Author Sarah Baker pictured with youngsters Billy Foster, 3, and 4-year-old Eowyn Middleton at Worfield Caterpillars

Sarah Baker went to Worfield Caterpillars Nursery, in Main Street, to see what people thought of her book, The Catapult Kid.

Mother-of-three Sarah has a long history with the nursery. Two of her children have been to Worfield Caterpillars and her youngest, will be joining very soon.

Sarah said: "It was absolutely lovely. The children were fantastic. I had some extremely positive feedback from all the staff.

"It's crucial to get close to target audience. Until you see how children respond you're just hoping it's good enough. To see smiling faces and hear little giggles is brilliant.

"It was a big comfort for the first time of reading it that I was among friends."

It was the first of a number of readings Sarah will give across the county and beyond as part of the World Book Day celebrations.

She will visit schools and groups in Bridgnorth, Much Wenlock, Newport and Wolverhampton over the next week.

Angela Wright, nursery manager at Worfield Caterpillars, said the children had a great time listening to the new book.

"It was fantastic, and the book went down very well," she said. "The kids loved it.

"Sarah was one of our parents, and we didn't even know she was writing a book. She rang us and asked whether she could come in to read it to the children and get some feedback.

"Sarah and her family live in the village as well, so it was a bit like local community networking. We're just a tiny rural village, so it's nice it was produced in the village."

World Book Day falls on Thursday this year, and the children at Worfield Caterpillars have been very much looking forward to it.

"We're very passionate about books in our nursery," Angela said.

"We're on our second Outstanding from Ofsted and one of the things we push is books, rather than e-readers.

"Children develop the most in the first three years of their lives. The exposure to language, either verbal or written, stands them in better stead when they get to school.

"In modern times it's all reading text from phones and iPads. We've got quite a big library area in the classroom to try and encourage children to be familiar with books and love them as soon as they come in."

For more information about the nursery call 01746 716421 or visit