Matthew James Joins Forces With WatAdventure For New Project


Manchester publishers sign deal at London Book Fair 2018.

Collaborative release of ‘WatAdventure in Australia’ coming July 2018.

“Disruptive” and creative new venture sees
a competition winner become the main character!

Matthew James Publishing and WatAdventure Publishing have announced a working relationship to co-produce the first book in the WatAdventure book series. The two Manchester-based publishing houses inked the agreement on April 12th at the London Book Fair at the Kensington Olympia.

WatAdventure In Australia will be released in July 2018. The bright, colourful and educational children’s book begins a series that will be welcomed by children and parents alike. With vividly hilarious illustrations from Katie Williams, WatAdventure In Australia shows children a whole new world through a blend of fun, unique storytelling and education.

Matthew James Publishing was established in 1993 and is now home to rising children’s imprint Tiny Tree. The independent publisher released thirteen books in 2017, with a further fifteen scheduled for release this year. The collaboration with WatAdventure is seen as an extension to the publisher’s ongoing efforts in the children’s book market.

WatAdventure is a publishing company that specialises in future media, interactive storytelling and immersive experiences that combine the digital and print mediums. It brings groundbreaking ideas to allow children to engage with stories in ways which have never been done before. WatAdventure in Australiais not only the first book in a series of picture books set around the world, it’s the start of a disruptive publishing campaign to create hilarious adventure stories, starring real kids in books, cartoons and games.

James Shaw, managing director of Matthew James Publishing, said of the announcement: “We’re really excited to be partnering with WatAdventure on this truly unique series. Through Tiny Tree, and titles like Portia the Pear and Ilias’ Mountain, we have brought emotional education to the fore. WatAdventure in Australia allows us to expand on that educational aspect further; allowing children to learn all about different parts of the world in a fun new way, and we’re excited to finally get WatAdventure In Australia into the hands of children across the UK this July.”

He continued: “WatAdventure and Matthew James are very similar companies with similar mentalities. When we were approached by Mark to work on this project we couldn’t turn them down. It’s been fantastic to work with him and the rest of the team and to build this relationship between our two companies”.

WatAdventure owner Mark Gray echoed this sentiment. “We wanted to create a picture book like no other – one that gives our audience the unique opportunity to be part of the making of the book, as well as being in the actual book. We’ve teamed up with Tiny Tree to bring one of the most innovative children’s books ever made in the UK to a worldwide market. We want to be one the most innovative children’s publishers, creating adventure stories where children can be at the heart of them across all mediums – from books to games.”

Richard David Lawman, author of WatAdventure in Australia and creative director of WatAdventure told us, “This is the story of a child who wakes in the night, and grabbing their two favourite teddies they step into a magic den and head off on a hilarious trip to Australia.  The magic of this book is that the role of the child in the book is to be the prize in a fantastic competition being held by WatAdventure on kids social media app PopJam.”

“Not only are we giving the opportunity of making one of our fans the star of the story, there are numerous opportunities for children around the world to see their artwork and ideas make it into the final book design.”

“There’s never been a book made this way before, not knowing who the star will be or what they’ll look like” explains Katie Williams, WatAventure’s illustrator. “It’s going to be such an exciting challenge to be the first to make it happen. I’ll be hand drawing the winner into the book as soon as the competition closes and I can’t wait to find out who it will be! Good luck everyone!”

The first WatAdventure title, WatAdventure in Australia is scheduled to be released at the beginning of July 2018. WatAdventure holds the worldwide exclusive rights to the WatAdventure series, with plans to expand into the North American and Australian markets in 2019.