NEW month: Hooray for November with its wild colours, woolly socks and whiff of almost – Christmas.

NEW website: A big thank you to Ralph Croly for jazzing it up a treat.

NEW York: where not to be right now. Thoughts and prayers for those whose homes and lives have been ripped apart by Hurricane Sandy. I was once caught on the edge of a cyclone off Bangladesh. As the wind shook roofs and walls and the rain sliced in sideways, it was absolutely terrifying.

NEW love of pumpkin pie. I hated it as a child for its weird, soft, old-sock taste. I love it now for its … weird, soft, old-sock taste.

NEW version of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang by Frank Cottrell Boyce. A tooting good hoot of a read.

NEW book on the way, with a NEW adventure for Abbie and Perdita in the NEW World (Amazon jungle). Jungle Tangle will be out next February (see BOOKS section for more).