Darwin’s frog was named after Charles Darwin, who discovered this unique creature living in Argentina and Chile, while on his famous world voyage.
Darwin’s Frog is a very cleverly adapted frog. It camouflages itself from predators by lying on the ground looking like a dead leaf (it has a pointy nose giving it a leaf shape). It can also turn on its back exposing the boldly patterned surface of its belly. The most amazing feature of this frog however, is that the tadpoles develop into frogs inside the male frog’s throat!
First, the female lays her eggs in the water. The male guards the eggs for 2-3 weeks but still, about half are eaten by insects and other predators. Any eggs that actually make it to the tadpole stage (usually about half) are swallowed by the male, who carries them around in his vocal pouch and protects them as they grow.
Once the tadpoles are tiny froglets, and large enough to protect themselves, they hop out of dad’s mouth and swim away. What a clever and unique way to protect your babies!
But sometimes clever adaptations like this are not enough.
Due to rediculous timing, Darcy Moon and the Deep-fried Frogs almost didn’t get an official launch.
The reason for this is simple.
The release of Darcy Moon came within weeks of my family’s move from Singapore to Perth, and in the chaos that accompanies moving countries with two young children, I almost gave up on my life-long dream of throwing a book launch party.
It all seemed like too much to deal with.
But as you can see, common sense took over and I soon realised that I could NOT let a moment like this slip by unnoticed. No matter how much crazy stuff was going on in my life, this was something I had to celebrate. This was the culmination of a childhood dream.
So, with the help of my ever supportive family, we took the plunge and organised a party, which we very cleverly planned to take place ONE DAY before we left the country.
(Please note, life since then has been stupidly busy involving, amongst other things, temporary accommodation, buying a car, opening bank accounts and shopping for winter clothes as well as endless random items such as potato mashers, wind-up crayons and easter eggs – this may go some way to explaining the time gap between the book launch and the BLOG about the book launch … but back to the point.)
Darcy Moon and the Deep-fried Frogs was launched on April 13th, 2014 in the beautiful Blue Room at the Arts House in Singapore.
It was a very special occasion. A chance to celebrate the publication of my first book (I have my fingers crossed there will be more), and also, a chance to say farewell. Farewell to Singapore and the friends I made there.
The Illustrator of the book, Michael Scott Parkinson, couldn’t make it (for geographical reasons), but nonetheless his presence was everywhere and made the day soooooo much more visually appealing!!!
I was super nervous about my speech, but everyone was so supportive and looking back on the day, I hope people left with a glimpse into how much writing this book has meant to me, and the emotional road to publication.
Thank you to my husband for taking hardly any photos throughout the event (I forgive him only due to his constant support, encouragement and love over the past decade – lucky escape!).
Thank you also to my daughter and friends for their beautiful singing, and thank you to my son for his delightful impromptu speech.
And a sincere thank you to Sarah Mounsey, for her moral support and heartfelt words on the day, as well as her enduring and much treasured friendship.
Also, thank you to everyone who attended. Your presence meant the world to me.
I’m excited to announce that Fremantle Press (the Australian publishing house of Darcy Moon and the Deep-fried Frogs) has signed a new distribution agreement, effective last week, with the Singapore-based company Closetful of Books.
The owner of Closetful of Books, Denise Tan will select a number of Fremantle Press titles for her program. ‘Hoppily’ for me, her first choice is Darcy Moon and the Deep-Fried Frogs.
Denise has an infectious passion for children’s literature and a strong background in the book trade, having worked with well-known Singapore bookshop Bookaburra for a number of years. I am so excited that Darcy Moon and the Deep-fried Frogs is her first Australian book choice.
Already she has featured me on her website, coordinated all the book sales for my author visits at the Australian International School, managed to get Darcy Moon and the Deep-fried Frogs into the gorgeous boutique PlayDate Bookstore in the Katong V shopping Mall, and is now working with me to organise a fun and family-friendly afternoon book launch to be held at the Singapore Arts House on April 13th.
All are welcome, so please do join us!
The arrangement with Closetful of Books is exciting not only for me, but as Denise slowly brings more and more quality Fremantle Press titles to Singaporean shores, all book lovers in Singapore will benefit.