AWARD-winning author and illustrator Lauren Child is returning to the Borders Book Festival to talk about her hugely popular character Clarice Bean and her latest novel Clarice Bean: SCRAM.

The former Children’s Laureate and creator of family favourites including Charlie and Lola and the Ruby Redford novels is no stranger to the event which she considers to be one of her favourites.

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Young readers will delight in discovering how Clarice’s family came to have a dog and how he got his unusual name, but it’s also a story set over a swelteringly hot summer weekend, about two sisters and how they fall out over a pair of flip-flops and fall back in again - united by a stray dog.

“Nothing ever happens except for sometimes. And only on rare-ish occasions, which is hardly ever. There are times when even I can’t turn the nothing into more than it is. But there was one day in the holidays that began as a nothing day and then everything happened. Absolutely nearly everything.”

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The Clarice Bean books have received huge critical acclaim since they debuted in 1999, selling over 6 million copies worldwide as well as winning some of children’s books’ highest accolades.

Lauren said: “I always love to come to the Borders Book Festival. I’ve not been for a while but when I was invited I was very keen to come back and it’s fantastic that it’s back to Harmony House in Melrose which is a wonderful venue.

“Clarice was my first character and she began my career in 1999 and I like to go back to her from time to time.

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“This is a summer book set in a heatwave over a holiday weekend and that can be really boring for children which parents don’t understand.  Clarice upsets her family and older sister until she finds a stray dog outside a corner shop which she brings home.

“I’ll be talking about the book with slides and a question and answer session afterwards and I’m really looking forward to it.

“The book is for the whole family and it’s about relationships which means a lot to me.”