Orwell children’s author tells story behind Max’s Marvellous Journey to the Moon ahead of Royston’s district museum event

PUBLISHED: 11:45 15 August 2017 | UPDATED: 11:48 15 August 2017

Ute Sproulle will be hosting activites and reading her book Maxs Marvellous Journey to the Moon at Royston's district museum. Picture: Pegasus Elliot Mackenzie Publishers

Ute Sproulle will be hosting activites and reading her book Maxs Marvellous Journey to the Moon at Royston's district museum. Picture: Pegasus Elliot Mackenzie Publishers

Pegasus Elliot Mackenzie Publishers

An author, who lived in Germany, Canada and the USA before settling in South Cambs, has been invited to Royston’s district museum to give a special reading of her children’s book.

Ute's husband Richard will make an appearance as Professor Boggle at their Royston event. Ute's husband Richard will make an appearance as Professor Boggle at their Royston event.

Ute Sproulle’s first published book – Max’s Marvellous Journey to the Moon – is the story of young boy, his great-uncle Professor Boggle and his cat Humphrey as they accidentally set off into out of space.

Ute said: “I met my husband Richard, who had job as an engineer in Vancouver, and we moved to Bassingbourn in 1979 where his family had a farm.

“It was a culture shock, because I was used to living in big North American cities, and this was a rural little village. But it was lovely and idyllic.

“Now we live in Orwell and it’s great, and I volunteer at Petersfield Primary School.

“I first thought of Max 20 years ago. I suffered a brain aneurysm and was off work, and spent time with my neighbours two daughters who were three and seven at the time and I would tell them stories of Max. Now the youngest of those girls graduated with an Master of Science from Oxford.

“I’ve read it to children at the school and the teachers were really supportive, so I sent it to the publisher and I was pleased they took it on and wanted the next book too.”

Ute, who is fluent in German and French, writes under the name Maria Sproulle – as it was her grandmother’s name and is “easier to say”.

She said: “Travel influences my writing, as I have been lucky enough to travel the world. I have been interested in space for many years, living in Canada and the United States during 1969 – which was a pretty big year.”

In the next book out, Max is joined by girl pal Milky.

Ute said: “I want to show readers that girls can do science too. I studied languages myself, possibly because it was unusual for girls to get involved with science back then.”

Ute will be at the museum in Lower King Street on August 26 from 10am to 12 noon, and wants Royston’s youngsters to go along to hear Max’s Marvellous Journey to the Moon.

She said: “I think anyone interested in storytelling or space should come along for an animated talk with myself, it will be full of imagination and learning – and Professor Boggle and Humprey will be there too.”

After the talk, the children are invited to draw their own travel pictures to accompany the book, or write their own space travel story.

Max’s Marvellous Journey to the Moon is available at Heffers Bookshop, Foyles, Waterstones, Amazon and from Pegasus publishers. The next book Max and Milky Make it to Mars is out on August 31.

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