Our most prolific teen author Philip Caveney hopped on a train from Manchester and came up to launch Seventeen Coffins – the follow-up to his bestselling teen book Crow Boy – yesterday. The decision to hold the book launch at Holy Rood High was a no-brainer, given the fact that the school overlooks Arthur’s Seat where the original seventeen miniature coffins were discovered in 1836 – eight of which are still on display in the National Museum of Scotland. I was pretty nervous – two hundred 13-year-olds in a hall is not my idea of a good time, really, but there was no need. Philip had them eating out of the palm of his hand, and the surprise appearance of the plague doctor from Mary King’s Close (who appears in both Crow Boy and Seventeen Coffins) certainly shocked a few of the audience. By the end of his talk Philip had the pupils clamouring to ask questions – not usually what happens when you ask children to speak in front of their peers. We retired to the fantastic school library afterwards, (overlooking Duddingston Loch, what a fantastic view), where there was a steady stream of children who came to buy books, speak to Philip and have their free Seventeen Coffins postcards signed. We also took the opportunity to take some pictures of Philip in front of the only Tardis to be found in any Scottish school library. After a late lunch, provided by the brilliant school librarian, Rachel McCabe, I drove a happy Philip back to Waverley for his train down to Manchester – dedicated author or what?