READING my children books at bedtime is always a pleasure and so when I spotted that Mini Grey, author of one of my seven-year-old's favourite night-time reads, Biscuit Bear, (Nestle Smarties Prize winner in 2004), was coming to St Albans I knew we had to be there.

Mini began by sharing some of her favourite books from her youth and regaling the assembled crowd of children and parents with the fact that she is indeed named after the vehicle in which she was born.

Mini went on to read and animate some of her stories including Egg Drop and before giving us a sneak preview of the next book in her Traction Man series in which our trusty hero has a new playmate in the form of Turbo Dog, a tale that anyone who wasn't there on the day won't hear about until October - and we're not telling.

Mini also found time to fill us all in on how she creates her stories using a series of sketchbooks, which proved to be very interesting to my 13-year-old aspiring writer.

Full marks to St Albans Children's Book Group for arranging such a lively and interesting event as part of National Share-A-Story Month.

Melanie Dakin