Guy Bass brings laughs and chills to BookFest event

CHARACTER Guy Bass promoting his new book Stitch Head at Highlight Comedy Club at Gunwharf Quays.   Picture: Malcolm Wells (113799-3336)
CHARACTER Guy Bass promoting his new book Stitch Head at Highlight Comedy Club at Gunwharf Quays. Picture: Malcolm Wells (113799-3336)

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AWARD-winning children’s author Guy Bass had his young fans rolling with laughter when he appeared as part of Portsmouth Bookfest.

Performing at the Highlight comedy club in Gunwharf Quays yesterday, the writer entertained dozens of youngsters and parents with hilarious tales from his childhood and spooky readings from his best-selling books.

Guy is the two-time winner of the Portsmouth Children’s Book Award, in 2010 and 2011, and also won a Blue Peter Book Award in 2010 for his book Dinkin Dings and the Frightening Things.

The former actor is a regular visitor to Portsmouth and said he always receives a warm welcome at schools in the city.

‘It was great fun,’ he said. ‘Hearing everybody laugh and cheer is such an amazing feeling, it never gets old.

‘And holding the event in the comedy club gave it more of a major event feeling.

‘I know it was a bit of an experiment for the organisers to hold it there but I thought it went really well.’

The author gave a ghoulish reading from his latest book Stitch Head and even invited members of his young audience to join him on stage and meet its patchwork star.

Guy said the story – which is about a small monster forgotten by his mad-scientist creator and will have a sequel out next year – has been a surprise hit.

He said: ‘I wasn’t expecting it to do quite as well as it has.

‘It’s a bit darker than my other books and I thought it would be a bit more niche, but I’m delighted it’s been successful.’

Sam Biggs, nine, of St James’s Road, in Southsea, said: ‘I thought he was really funny.

‘I liked the part where he talked about his life and what it was like being a writer. His books are full of great monsters.’

Peter Bone, school library service manager, said they would definitely be using the comedy club for more events in the future.

He said: ‘Guy always gives us a mixture of Shakespearean acting and stand-up comedy. From the laughter it sounded like everyone had a great time.’

WHAT’S ON

There’s something for everyone at this year’s Portsmouth BookFest. For tickets call (023) 9268 8685.

· WEDNESDAY November 2: Best-seller Dee Williams, at Paulsgrove Library, Paulsgrove. Starts at 3pm. £3 entry – which includes a cup of tea.

· WEDNESDAY November 2: Poetry reading with 10 poets at New Theatre Royal, Guildhall Walk. Starts at 7.30pm. Tickets £5.

· THURSDAY November 3: Number one best-seller Lesley Pearse at the Menuhin Theatre, Portsmouth Central Library. Starts at 7pm. Tickets £4.