Fresh from receiving an MBE for his campaigning to lift children out of poverty, Marcus Rashford is now warming up for a new challenge: the England footballer is writing a children’s novel.
Rashford has already launched a book club aimed at bringing books to children who need them most, and has topped the bestseller charts with his first book, the non-fiction You Are a Champion. Now he is teaming up with author Alex Falase-Koya to write The Breakfast Club Adventures.
The illustrated novel, aimed at eight to 11-year-olds, will follow the adventures of the 12-year-old Marcus and his “group of unlikely friends” from their school’s breakfast club, said publisher Macmillan Children’s Books. It will draw on Rashford’s own experiences at breakfast clubs; he has spoken of how his family relied on them and free school meals when he was growing up. Last year he backed a cross-party parliamentary bill to fund free breakfast provision in schools.
“I wanted to create something that really captured the true spirit of breakfast club. Outside of making sure we got the best start to our days with cereal, toast and juice, it was where my friendships were made. Where we could just lose ourselves. A safe haven,” said Rashford. “Breakfast club was where some of my greatest memories were formed, where we talked about our dreams and where adventures were planned, and it was important for me that we captured that in my first fiction book. Alex is a great writer who is able to capture that brilliantly and I’m thrilled that he’s on this journey with me.”
The novel will be published in May 2022, with an illustrator to be confirmed shortly. It will be the third title to be distributed by the Marcus Rashford Book Club, after A Dinosaur Ate My Sister by Pooja Puri, illustrated by Allen Fatimaharan, and Silas and the Marvellous Misfits by Tom Percival.
Falase-Koya, winner of Spread the Word’s 2019 London’s Writers Awards and author of the forthcoming superhero series Marv, said he was “very excited” to be working with Rashford. “Books changed my life when I was a kid, making me take a closer look at the things around me and taking me to worlds far from my own. I hope that this book gets the opportunity to do the same for other people," hy het gesê.