July 3, 2006

A little way in the future, time is distorting. Time Tornadoes are causing havoc. People are whirled out of their own time, never to return, and a Woolly Mammoth has been seen on the banks of the River Thames.

But time is big business, and whoever gets control of time controls life as we know it!


A big book for kids about Time. My godchildren were always asking me why grown-ups never had enough time – so I thought I should write a story about that.

An alchemist called Able Darkwater wants a special clock called The TimeKeeper. But the keeper of the clock, though she doesn’t know it, is a girl called Silver.

Silver lives in an Elizabethan manor house called Tanglewreck with her horrible Aunt Mrs Rokabye. When Mrs Rokabye takes her to London to visit Able Darkwater all kinds of adventures begin, including a meeting with the Throwbacks – an underground tribe of good people who still live as though it’s the 18th century.

Enter the dazzling beautiful scientist Regalia Mason and a visit to the Einstein Line – the line that regulates time travel in the universe.

I loved writing this book. Everyday I’d go to my studio and wonder what would happen next. There was a lot of fun, especially with Mrs Rokabye and Sniveller – Able Darkwater’s manservant. And how great to re-invent the sands of time as a beach.

I got the title when I was doodling rectangles and I sometimes write words backwards and re-spell them.

  • Publication: 3 Jul 2006
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury