I was born and brought up in Barnes and several of my YA historical books are set here. My At the House of the Magician trilogy (Bloomsbury) begins in Mortlake at the home of Dr Dee. I’ve always loved reading historical and slightly spooky books, but my all-time favourite read would definitely be one of the Just William books by Richmal Crompton.

Crompton wrote about thirty of these collections of short stories, so finding a favourite is difficult, but it would probably be one of the early stories, written in the 1940s and concerning William pestering a genteel lady novelist. I have several Williams on my shelf and they are still my go-to books if I feel in need of a laugh.

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