Book Reviews: Jay-Jay The Supersonic Bus by Sue Wicksteadcategories: Book, Double-Decker Bus, Transport Fiction, Playbus, Play, Gatwick Airport, Children's Book
Sue Wicksteadabout this book: Jay-Jay was once a real bus JJK 261, he was rescued from a scrap-yard and taken to an airport (Gatwick Airport) where he was transformed into a bus to play on. The bus worked in a new area of town which as yet had nowhere for children to play.
My children went to the playgroup on the bus and they loved the cosy welcoming feel. I became involved in running the project and helped raise money to re-paint the original bus and then buy a new bus. (Hopefully there is a story to be written here?)
In 2012 the 'Bewbush Playbus' photographic book was published. The children in school loved seeing the original photographs and asked so many questions. So as a visiting Supply teacher I began to tell them the background tale which I then wrote.
In 2014 the first story book based on the original bus's adventure was published.
Visiting many schools I have been able to share the story and the children love the fact that it is a story based on a real bus.
He is called Jay-Jay as his number plate is JJK 261.
I did originally draw a story board for my book and although the children loved the journey I knew my illustrations needed to be improved, the only thing I asked the illustrator was that the pictures should look much like the original bus and that it should not have googly eyes.
The hardest part about writing and producing a book was that as children's books are so many I had to believe in this journey and take it on myself, I have ownership at least although promotion and distribution is hard as I would like to get on with the next bus books. (with 10 in the pipe line it is a slow process)
Book 2 is due out in 2017 'Jay-Jay's Island Adventure' sadly he missed the boat for Christmas 2016, but hopefully he might make 'World Book Day' March 2017. fingers crossed.
what to read next: if you read and liked this book...
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Ride along as Jay-Jay gets a new life and purposeRide along as Jay-Jay, an old bus destined out live out his final days in the breaker's yard, suddenly gets a magical transformation, a new life, and purpose.
Suddenly Jay-Jay was selected, out of all the other old buses in the scrap yard, and turned into a 'Playbus' for children at the airport, complete with a new name "Supersonic'. The colorful drawings of the bus, and the upstairs and downstairs of the children's play areas illustrate why the children got excited.
Jay-Jay has new adventures. And as his fame grew, his name also grew…until it became "Jay-Jay The Supersonic Bus".
Jay-Jay the Supersonic BusThe real bus was a special place for me and I loved it. I am so glad to see the bus has now got a fictional story of its own. I love the way that the old bus is feeling sad to be unwanted but then he is transformed into a fun place for children to play. Upstairs is full of toys and games,I loved to dress up. Downstairs with all the messy crative things especially the playdough. Then there is the slide to play on outside. Real or imaginary the Playbus was a great place when I was growing up. I am sure any child would want to explore. [by Tom Riddick]
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• Book Review: Bewbush Playbus by Sue Wickstead|
• Book Review: Jay's New Game (Jay's World / Le monde de Jay) by Kamon Therrien|
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