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John Townsend John Townsend

John writes a wide range of books for children of all ages and is published by Bloomsbury, Barrington Stoke and Pearson (Heroes) among others. John is passionate about Reading for Pleasure and visits many schools to encourage creative writing and reading. John's fiction is fast paced and immediately compelling, often full of danger, action and mystery - and with a few puzzles for the reader to solve. His latest novel, Never Odd Or Even for young teens was short-listed for the 2015 Nottingham 'Brilliant Book Awards' and Leicester's 'Reading Rampage'. John is a National Literacy Trust 'Reading Champion' and 'Words for Life' author. He lives in Devon.



Eliot thinks outside the box. He can't help it. Numbers are his thing - and letters, too. So when the biggest mystery to strike his school needs to be solved, Eliot is the one to call. Can you solve the mystery and find out who did it?

'A refreshingly different story. Well worth reading!' The Bookbag

2015 Nottingham Brilliant Book Award Shortlisted

Ransom        Teen


In the attic of his house, Sam finds a leather case that belonged to his great great grandfather, Freddy Ovel. The case contains a diary, and as Sam begins to read it he is taken right back to just before the First World War, when Freddy was a boy. But the diary unlocks more than just events of the war. Sam discovers there is much more to 'Freddy' than meets the eye - heroic wartime deeds and terrible injuries, but also some very dark secrets indeed...

'This short novel is ideal for boys who prefer a short, punchy read with a challenge.' The Booktrust

'This latest book is incredibly moving and would appeal to all ages.' Amazon Reader Review

Ransom        9-12


Barney's wanted: preferably dead and silenced forever... They're after him - but Barney doesn't know who they are until he discovers a deadly terrorist plot. After a series of lucky escapes, he tries to strike back and get help but no one will believe him - not his teacher, not the police and not even MI5. The only person who will listen is Laura but can two teenagers outwit such a sinister terror attack? Time is running out. FAST.

'A pacy, upbeat adventure... This engaging book would be a good one to give to a misunderstood teenage reader whose behaviour is regarded as "challenging".' The Independent on Sunday

'I would recommend this book for children (maybe some adults) over the age of ten and would give it five out of five stars.' Scottish Books Trust

'This is a fun, pacy, page-turner' National Literacy Trust

Acorn        Teen Novel


Max is recruited to spy on his friend's uncle, a suspected terrorist with the deadly scorpion gang. But nothing is quite as it seems in this world of espionage, codes, kidnaps and car chases. Max is a genius at word puzzles - but can he solve the mystery of who to trust? And does the silver scorpion have far more than a sting in its tail?

'A thrilling, non-stop adventure packed with puzzles for the reader to solve.'The Book People

'Will get the most reluctant reader turning the pages to get to the end.' Amazon Reader Review

Bloomsbury        9-12


Publications (Fiction):

Night of the Werewolf     Reality Check Series     Barrington Stoke     2010

Ski Jump (play)     Heroes Series For Boys     Pearson     2012

Shades Series & Sharp Shades (simplified versions)     Teen fiction
Hunter's Moon     Ransom     2013
The Messenger     Ransom     2013
Death On Toast     Ransom     2014
Flashback     Ransom     2014

Toxic Series (9-11 fiction)     Terror of the Swamp     Ransom     2014

Dead In The Water     Ransom     2015
Peril In The Snow     Ransom     2015


Publications (Non-Fiction):

Animal Superpowers     6 Book Series     Raintree     2012

101 Things You Didn't Know About Your Body     Capstone Global Library     2011

Sci-Hi series: Cars and Motorbikes     Capstone Global Library     2011

Amazing Crime Scene Science (Series of 6 Titles)     Franklin Watts     2011
Forensic Secrets
Searching for Murder Clues
CSI at Work
Crime Lab Detectives
Famous Forensic Cases
Cyber Crime Secrets

Action Force (Edge Series)     Franklin Watts     2013
Special Operations
Air Force

WOW Facts
Animal Record Breakers     YA nonfiction/fiction     Badger Learning     2014
Killer Sharks
Secrets of the Dead
Super Snakes
Gross Body Secrets
Mystery Beasts
Tiny but Deadly
Plague and Pox