Itch by Simon Mayo


Written by Simon Mayo

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Shortlisted for the National Book Tokens Children’s Book of the Year 2012 and March 2012 Debut of the Month.

A terrific action adventure packed-full of fascinating true science! Itch is making an unusual collection: when it is finished, it will include all the elements of the periodic table. But collecting elements is a risky business and having almost killed his classmates by releasing arsenic vapour into a biology lesson, Itch takes possession of a new piece of rock which may have even more dangerous consequences. Itch and his cousin have to keep one step ahead of some very serious enemies who will do everything they possibly can to get it.

Simon Mayo says, "As soon as I came across the fact that a small number of people like to collect elements from the periodic table—they call themselves ‘element hunters’—I knew I had got my story... I wanted to make sure that everything in the book is technically accurate; even if this new element doesn’t actually exist, in theory it could."

You can follow Itch on Twitter @itchingham. Click here to download an iPod app to bring the elements to life or click here for the Android App.

To celebrate publication of Simon Mayo’s debut novel ITCH, the publisher has launched an ‘element hunt’ with six partner sites – Lovereading4kids is thrilled to be party to this really fun challenge and hidden somewhere on Lovereading4kids you’ll find one of the six hidden ‘elements’. Once you’ve found it click here to find out where to find the other five elements.


Itch by Simon Mayo

Meet Itch - an accidental, accident-prone hero. Science is his weapon. Elements are his gadgets. This is Alex Rider with Geek-Power!

Itchingham Lofte - known as Itch - is fourteen, and loves science - especially chemistry.

He's also an element-hunter: he's decided to collect all the elements in the periodic table. Which has some interesting and rather destructive results in his bedroom ...Then, Itch makes a discovery: a new element, never seen before. At first no one believes him - but soon, someone hears about the strange new rock and wants it for himself. And Itch is in serious danger...


'A great debut . . . you'll be itching to read more.' - Anthony Horowitz

'Simply put, Itch is a hugely enjoyable read, and has everything the 10+ reader could want.' - BookZone4Boys

'You'd have to work quite hard not to like Itchingham Lofte.' - Tim Radford in The Guardian

About the Author

Simon Mayo

itch simon mayo aluminum Simon Mayo is best known for his BBC Radio 2 Drivetime show. He began writing four years ago, when he decided to create something for his son Joe, an avid reader and science nut. Having spent ten years interviewing scientists for his Radio 5 Live show he had plenty of ideas, and was soon consumed by ITCH and his story, waking up in the middle of the night to write. Simon has spent the last three years juggling his broadcasting job with visiting schools and talking about the ITCH series. During this time he’s met over 10,000 children as well as having appeared at literary and science festivals. Simon has worked on BBC radio since 1981 and runs a Book Club on his Radio 2 show. He is also the co-presenter of "Kermode and Mayo's Film Review" on BBC Radio 5 Live. In 2008, Mayo was recognized as the "radio broadcaster of the year" at the 34th annual Broadcasting Press Guild Awards and the "Speech Broadcaster of the Year" at the Sony Radio Academy Awards.

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Simon Mayo
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Author's Website


Doubleday Children's Books an imprint of Random House Children's Books

Publication date

1st March 2012




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