DOZENS of pupils filled a school hall to hear a bestselling author tell them about his latest book.
The Year 8 pupils at Bay House School in Gomer Lane, Gosport, gathered to hear American Rick Yancey speak.
Scores queued to buy a copy of his latest book The 5th Wave, a post-apocalyptic sci-fi novel, after he spoke for an hour.
Rick, from Gainsville, in Florida, has been in the country since Monday on his book tour.
He told The News he was always delighted when he had the chance to meet his readers. He said: ‘It’s one of the best parts of my job, if not the best.
‘Writing is a solitary experience. To come out and meet actual readers, people who are excited about the books, it’s very exciting.
‘I think they’re fascinated by dystopian literature I think they reach that certain age where they do start thinking about the future.
‘Plus they’re terribly exciting stories.’
Rick has written 12 novels over four series with two standalone novels.
His first, The Extraordinary Adventures of Alfred Krop, was in the final for a Carnegie Medal in 2005.
Year 8 pupil Lauren Knoll, 13, was with her friend Rachel Burns, 13, when they met Rick and got their copies of the book signed.
Lauren said: ‘His talk sounded interesting.
‘It made me want to read the book.
‘He was talking about his career – it was really interesting.
‘It was the way he worked up to writing his books that was interesting. I’d quite like to write a book that has as much interest as his.’
Manager of the learning resource centre at the school Adele Hawksworth organised the visit.
She said it was a ‘fantastic opportunity’ to see an international author – a first for the school.
She said: ‘We’ve done a couple of authors already this year but the fact that he was an international bestseller made us want him to come to our school.
‘They tend to bring their stories to life better than we would perhaps reading it to them in the library.’