Hal Spacejock Second Course came out in March 2006, just over two years ago, and it's the second book in my short recap of the series.
Now, if there's one issue with Hal Second Course it's this: everyone on the cover looks angry or gloomy. (The same cover artist did the Hal 1, 3 and 4 covers, all of which contain visual gags.)
Not that I'm criticising Hal 2, but I'm eager for the book to sell out so it can be reprinted with a tweaked cover image. The artist will earn a bit more too, so head out and buy Hal 2 now! Quick, stocks are limited, etc.
The book itself earned a bunch of reviews and reader feedback, with plenty of comments along these lines:
I must say that if you enjoyed book one, you'll absolutely love book two - it's miles ahead of book one ... and I loved the first book :)
Next stop was a visit to the Fantastic Planet 2006 bestseller list. From March-December that year they sold enough copies of Hal 2 to earn it position #21 overall.
Next surprise was a nomination for the WA Young Readers Book Awards. Books are suggested by students from schools all over WA, and Hal 2 was accepted as a nomination.
This raised Hal's profile amongst WA school libraries, many of whom purchase large numbers of WAYRBA listed books. A friend of mine working with school & library accounts for a chain store told me she slipped sale-or-return copies of Hal 1 and 3 into every WAYRBA order for Hal 2. With friends like that, who needs a publicity department? ;-)
Then it was Fantastic Planet's turn once again: They published a bestseller list dating back to their opening, and Hal 2 came in at #44.
Simon Haynes is the author of the Hal Spacejock and Hal Junior series (Amazon / Smashwords / other formats)