At one stage, every 90s child knew Jacqueline Wilson's name. Even if you've never read a single one of her stories you'll have seen her name plastered over countless books in your school library or on our TV screens.
CBBC decided to turn those Nick Sharratt illustrations into a real-life series when they introduced Tracey Beaker, one of Wilson's most prolific characters, on to our screens back in 2002. Raised in a foster home known as 'The Dumping Ground', Tracey was resilient and regularly broke the rules but her imagination and circumstances meant young audiences adored her.
Now Wilson plans to introduce Beaker to the world again but not as we know her. In her latest book, Wilson will tell the tale of Beaker - now in her 30s - through the eyes of her nine-year-old girl. Tracey is now a struggling single mother who is living in a rough council estate. In a recent interview with the Observer Wilson revealed why she was bringing back the famous character:
When I realised just how long ago it was since I wrote the first Tracy Beaker book, I thought: if we were in real time, Tracy herself would be in her 30s. And I’ve always thought that, even though Tracy had lots of problems in her life and a pretty rubbish mum who was never there for her, Tracy herself would be a good mum, no matter what.
It's no surprise that Wilson decided to bring back Beaker. The Tracey Beaker series is the most loaned book from 2000 - 2010 in the UK. Tracey's story will be narrated from the perspective of her daughter Jess, staying in line with Wilson's theme of child protagonists. Don't worry though, the book is meant for all ages, explains Wilson: “A knowing teenager or an adult will read something and understand it, while it will go straight over Jess’s head.” and this sequel will be 100% realistic:
How many young women without much education earn enough, with a daughter, to be able to buy their own home in London today? Being Tracy, she wants to be independent, but with a child, how can she be? So she’s having to scratch around.
We won't have to wait long for the next book as it's expected to hit book shelves in October.