There is nothing better than discovering a non-fiction book that is not only informative, but also interesting and full of fun. FACTopoia takes you on a trail of over 400 facts, allowing the reader to go on an adventure of the mind!
Today, I am thrilled to host a Q & A with Kate Hale where she tells us more about the research and inspiration behind the book.
- Where did the idea for FACTopia! come from?
I wanted to create a book where facts tell a story. I’ve always noticed when I’m researching that I’ll read about something really cool and then I’ll get info there about something else totally amazing and so on and so forth. It’s like those pop ups on a video that say “Hey, if you liked this, you’ll LOVE this.” I wanted to create that world for kids all inside a little book.
- How do you research the facts?
I ask myself a lot of questions first before I start researching. Sometimes the best facts come from the weirdest questions: Why do walruses have wrinkles? What’s living under my toaster? I’m a pretty curious person, so I ask a lot of questions! Then, I spend a lot of time reading news articles, science journals, and looking through other reliable sources to find facts and verify them.
- What led you to write nonfiction children’s books?
I actually started my career as an editor but always knew that I wanted to work on nonfiction books. I’ve always just really enjoyed learning about the real world. And I spent a lot of time outdoors and have been fascinated by nature since I was a kid. Now, I’m really happy that I get to combine all of those things.
- FACTopia! presents information in a fun and interactive way, do you think this is important in nonfiction books?
Yes, yes, and yes! Making nonfiction and learning interactive and hands-on is really important. No matter what age you are I think most people learn better when they’re having fun. My goal is always to make kids feel like they’re having so much fun they don’t know they’re learning something new. I never want to present information as boring and I want readers do enjoy their experience with nonfiction just as much as I do.
- FACTopia! is published by Britannica Books. Did you read encyclopaedias when you were a younger?
I did, actually! My family had a big set of encyclopedias that we’d refer to a lot when we were doing homework or even around the dinner table. There were plenty of times we’d be in the middle of eating as a family and one of us would ask a question … and we brought the encyclopedia out to find the answer!
- Any surprising facts that you uncovered while researching the books?
My favourite fact of all time in this book is that a giant squid’s brain is shaped like a donut. I couldn’t believe it when I read it … it is just so crazy to think about!
FACTopia! Follow the Trail of 400 Facts by Kate Hale, illustrated by Andy Smith is out now in hardback (£9.99, Britannica Books)
Want to buy this book? Click here!
📚 Book gifted by publisher.