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President:  Dame Jacqueline Wilson; Patrons:  Michael Morpurgo & Ian Whybrow

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Mike Revell has always wanted to write for children. He studied Creative Writing at the University of Essex, followed by a postgraduate journalism course at Harlow College. Mike also has a passion for American Football, and when not writing fiction, he reports on the NFL for the Mirror newspaper. He lives near Cambridge with his girlfriend and their new puppy, Toffee. Stonebird is his debut novel.


Have a look at the rest of the Book Award 2016 Shortlist...

Published by Quercus Books

Mike Revell


About the book

About the author

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When eleven-year-old Liam moves house to be closer to his grandma, he’s thrown into an unfamiliar place, with a family that seems to be falling apart.


Liam doesn’t remember what Grandma was like before she became ill with dementia. He only knows the witch-like old woman who snaps and snarls and eats her birthday cards. He desperately wants to make everything better, but he can’t.


Escaping the house one evening, Liam discovers an old stone gargoyle in a rundown church, and his life changes in impossible ways.


The gargoyle is alive. It moves unseen in the night, acting out Liam’s stories. And stories can be dangerous things


But Liam’s grandma’s illness is getting worse, his mum isn’t coping, and his sister is skipping school.


What if the gargoyle is the only thing that can save Liam’s family?

Shortlisted title

How to Fly Book

"Amazing, really awesome books.  It’s a shame there can only be one winner.  Stonebird was especially amazing."

Jade, Market Drayton Junior School, Shropshire


"I thought Stonebird was really imaginative and shocking that every chapter ended with a new dilemma in Liam’s life!"

Tamsin, Market Drayton Junior School, Shropshire


"Stonebird has good parts and bad parts, ups and downs. The start is one of the worst bits but as you get going it gets gripping and exciting. A young boy called Liam moves house into a big, old and creepy house. Near his house is a church and behind the church is a gargoyle, the gargoyle can't speak but it does react to Liam's grandmas special egg. Liam's grandma has dementia and Liam is desperate to help her and the only way might be with the gargoyle, read this book to find out more."

Jack Gardiner,  Packwood Haugh School, Shropshire


"Stonebird is an amazing book. It's action packed and we love the way the gargoyle comes to life in the dead of night. Stonebird is an emotionally gripping story. We really recommend it to all book worms! It's clever how every time he tells a story with the stone it comes to life. I wish that could happen. How cool it would be. The book is full of suspense and you never know whats going to happen next. It takes a while to read but it's worth every moment. Every time you turn a page, it gets even better. (if possible!!) It paints pictures in the reader's mind and they will feel as if they are in the story like a 3D film. If you like adventure this book's for you. This book is definitely adventurous!"

Grace & Evie, St Leonard's CE Primary School, Bridgnorth, Shropshire


"This book is great love the way that the bird comes alive sort of. Great tension building at the start."

Maddie Hards, Greenfields Primary School, Shrewsbury


"I liked this book at the beginning when his dog jumps over the fence and into the library. I think it's a good book for any age"

Christian Bowen, Greenfields Primary School, Shrewsbury


"I REALLY LOVE THIS BOOK!!!  I think it really grabs the readers attention and is really fast paced. I got really moved when I thought Matt was going to die but I was released when he didn't. I enjoyed the stories he told about stone bird that he told in class but didn't like it when Matt bullied him about them. Quite often in this book I could really images I was there could see stone bird and all the people. I think it is a really lovely book, I would highly recomend it. = )"

Freya Hayward, Greenfields Primary School, Shrewsbury


"I really enjoyed this book I would definitely recommend it to anyone.It is the best book in book fest."

Amelia Roberts, Greenfields Primary School, Shrewsbury


"I think this is a really good book because of all the things that are happening behind the main plots and there is a lot of suspense in this book. My favourite character in this book is matt ,he is just very misunderstood. He only does those things so he can take his mind of his family. I think it is very strange that their mum and dad are close but matt  is bullying  Liam. I rate this book 7 out of 10.  There are a lot of sad moments in this book. Some of the chapters are interesting and some are not. I recommend this book for ages for 10-15 years."

Claudia Gwilt, St George's Junior School, Shrewsbury


"This book is amazing because it has mysterious adventures. Even though he is being harmed in such a bad way Stonebird will always be there for him. This book is probably one of the best books I have read so far. I would really recommend this book to other children of my age. I hope this book does win but the other books are good as well. As well as that Matt - the type of character who's attitude changes - can be a great friend. Also some characters attitudes doesn't  change!"

Owen Brown, Castlefields Primary School, Bridgnorth, Shropshire


"I think that Stonebird is an ok book. The had some good parts and some bad ones. My favourite character is Matt because he sounds like a horrible person to Liam in the book. My favourite part of the story is when Matt gets hurt by Stonebird because I like how mike describe what had happened. I think that this would be better for children who enjoy these types of books. Mike Revell is a good author but this isn't one of my favourite books."

George Childs, Castlefields Primary School, Bridgnorth, Shropshire


"Stonebird is a book filled with suspense, mystery and twists and turns. Liam gets himself in a whole lot of trouble when he meets a stone gargoyle, Stonebird. But this isn't a regular gargoyle...its alive. Having just moved house, his grandma having dementia and moving to a new school where he is bullied things couldn't get any worse. Well they can. Some parts of the book I enjoyed a lot and I couldn't put the book down. Other parts  of the story were really boring and I really didn't want to read on. It was an ok book but I wouldn't recommend it because I didn't really enjoy it all."

Sydney Anderson, Castlefields Primary School, Bridgnorth


"This book is my personal favourite because it is very mysterious and has a lot of secrets. It is very strange how Stonebird knew what Liam  was worried about. This book is like a theme park ride and takes you in all directions. Mike Revell is a brilliant writer to follow and inspire everyone. I will love to read more of his books and see if they are better than this. Those books will have to be super to take over this one. I  recommend this book to people who like books that  are so confusing they make your brain hurt. You have to read it!"

Rhys Blower, Castlefields Primary School, Bridgnorth


"I found this book like a roller-coaster because at times I couldn't put it down but at some times it seamed quite sad. I would definitely advise reading it and reading at a decent speed or you'll probably get confused. It is an inspiring book and Mike Revell must have a fantastic imagination. In my opinion this book does the two extremes of happy and sad and is also funny at times as well. The characters' personalities are all original and well planned out; whether they're mean, loving or humorous each one is as well planned out as the other which takes a very good author to do, and Mike Revell has managed greatly."

Archie Millichamp, Castlefields Primary School, Bridgnorth


"I liked Stonebird because it has lots of mysterious twists and turns this book make me want to read more and more. I felt Liam's Grandma had a demon inside her-she creeped me out, but I still really liked it . I would really advise people to read it if they like spooky and scary stories."

Emily Harper, Hinstock Primary School, Shropshire


"I love Stone Bird because it's very sci-fi, like Doctor Who. I love the fact that a gargoyle comes to life. It's very descriptive and thrilling. Thanks for writing this story Mike Revell. It's the best book EVER!!!!!!!

My favourite part is when the boy discovers the gargoyle. I would rate this book as a 10/10."

Benjamin Morgan, Hinstock Primary School, Shropshire


"I found this book really well written I hope Mike writes another book. It was my first and my favorite bookfest book and it is the best book that I read. It was an epic because the character Liam reminded me of a freind"

Archie Ross, Hinstock Primary School, Shropshire


"I didn't really like this book, I didn't  want to finish it. I found it very strange and weird because I didn't get the point of him finding a gargoyle that re-inacts stories that he tells in School. I don't recommend this book. :( "

Tom Bright, Packwood Haugh School, Nr Shrewsbury


"It was a very griping book with lots of twists and turns. I thought the story was well written and I couldn't stop reading it. I hope he writes more books maybe even a sequel to Stonebird. It was one of the best books I have ever read. I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to read it.  "

Bobby Boyes, Packwood Haugh School, Nr Shrewsbury


"I really  didn't like Stonebird it was so bad I didn't want to finish it. Both me and my friend didn't like it but some people wont agree and that is fine as it is only my opinion. I don't recommend it."

Georgina Kenyon, Packwood Haugh School, Nr Shrewsbury


"I haven't finished it yet so I don't know what's going to happen. It is sort of spooky and a tiny bit weird but I like books like that. I could say that Stonebird is one of the weirdest books of all time. There are a lot of twists. I don't think it was the book for me, but I know that other people love it."

Liberty Clarke, Packwood Haugh School, Nr Shrewsbury



It is a really good book because it's really dark and mysterious and for any age!"

Alfie Baker, Greenfirlds Primary School, Shrewsbury


"I really enjoyed the book. I got so engrossed in the great book so quickly it didn't take me very long to finish it

I loved the book so much .it was my favourite book of all of the book fest books"

Molly Lockley, Greenfields Primary School, Shrewsbury


"This book has a very good storyline, possibly the best book I have ever read. I would recommend this book to anyone!"

Max Binfield, Greenfields Primary School, Shrewsbury


"Magical,heartbreaking story my faiverote book I've read its to good to even explain but I have finished book fest and I think I know witch one I am going to vote for"

D'Arcy  Johnson, Greenfields Primary School, Shrewsbury


"Stonebird is a book that gets you into a lot of emotions it is the best book I have ever read. My favourite part was the part where his nan doesn't have dementia anymore."

Rowan Walder, Greenfields Primary School, Shrewsbury


"I really enjoyed stonebird,it took me a while to read it but that's because I was really hooked on it. I would say it is in my top 5 books I have ever read. At first I thaught it wouldn't be very good but I started to like it about a 1/4 of the way through the book. Over all I think it's a really good book."

Matthew Thomson, Greenfields Primary School, Shrewsbury



Saskia Gravestock, Rushbury C/E Primary School


"Stonebird was an enjoyable read which is one of the best books I have ever read.This is a great book with phenomenal description ;I couldn't put it down."

Huw Watson, St George's Junior School, Shrewsbury


"I think this book should be recommended to anybody who loves reading because you can take it anywhere and become engrossed in the story line. My favourite part is when Liam discovers his grandma used to write a diary for a gargoyle. I can't wait to read whether grandma gets better."

Noah Perry, Harlescott Junior School, Shrewsbury


"I think that book is very good because Liam finds a new bird made out of stone. Grandma is unwell and I hope they find a way to make her better. I can't wait to read what happens next."

Sam Evans, Harlescott Junior School, Shrewsbury


"Superb!This unusual novel was wonderfully creative wih a gripping problem full story line. Including a magical twist this book gave much detail. It is incredably touching with great writing I thoroughly enjoyed it and highly reccomend it."

Beth Rawlinson, St Lawrence Primary School, Church Stretton


"This is a fabulous book! Liam moves to a new town and a new school but meets a bully, Matt. Trying to save his grandmother that is suffering from dementia he will tell any story to keep him and his grandmother safe. Personally I think this book is very serious and if you were emotional after Half A Man I do not recommend it. It also a bit gory. Overall I thought it was an amazing book and I would not mind reading it again, Thank you Mike Revell!"

Joachim Mapp, Castlefields Primary School, Bridgnorth


"Out of all the books I've read so far, Stonebird is my favourite. I like the fact that some of the things that happen in this book you can relate to in real life. Also I like the fact that this book makes you question yourself and think," Could this actually happen? Could this be real?" The main character (Liam) is experiencing bad real-life problems when he turns to stories to help him. In some places this turns quite emotional and in some places it's a mystery. To conclude, it is by far one of the best books I've ever read and I would recommend this to anyone."

William Leach, Castlefields Primary School, Bridgnorth


"I think the book is a little bit gripping but its not my type of book. I prefer humorous and funny books, not serious and quite scary ones. In my opinion I don't really recommend this book."

Samuel Jones, St Lawrence Primary School, Church Stretton


"This book is amazing.  At the start you might find it a bit scary, at some parts you might be a bit  sad especially if a member of your family has been in hospital before.  In some parts it is awkward and some parts it is a little bit funny.  This book is not really funny it is more scary.  there is a little  bit of love in it.  I really recommend this book if you enjoy stories about bullying, stories coming true and also about old people in hospital."

Chloe Hunt, Castlefields Primary School, Bridgnorth


"I think the book is a little bit gripping but its not my type of book. I prefer humorous and funny books, not serious and quite scary ones. In my opinion I don't really recommend this book."

Samuel Jones, St Lawrence Primary School, Church Stretton


"Fantastic! I think this book is an amazing adventure story,where a boy going through ordainary life, has somthing standing in his way

A sad yet exciting book which I couldn't put down."

Emma Davies, St Lawrence Primary School, Church Stretton


"Amazingly spiritual yet believably touching. Filled with adventure and packed to bursting point with happiness, feeling and joy. Every page comes a new problem it ends sadly yet in a way that was expected."

Cerys Jones, St Lawrence Primary School, Church Stretton


"I really enjoyed this gripping book. It was a mixture of fiction and reality. It was impossible to put down and it has a perfect end."

James Williamson - Stottesdon Primary School


"This book is quite mysterious in some places, but to me it makes Stonebird a better read. This book is particularly sad because you care so much about the characters. The main character is bullied and he makes up stories in class. The plot is very good because it draws you in. When I finished the book I felt relieved and a bit sad."

Joseph Gregg, Castlefields Primary School, Bridgnorth


"AMAZING with a capital A. I loved it this was my second favourite book of the book award up next to - How to fly with broken wings . its such a amazing story with an kind of expected twist ending."

Charlotte Edge, Stottesdon Primary School


this book was a great story to read and would recommend it to others that like a thrilling story's.

Evie Davies, Stottesdon Primary School