On the idyllic island of Nantucket, the five Fairchild children enter a sandcastle competition while staying with their grandmother for the summer holidays.

They spend all day constructing a beautiful fort complete with soldiers, a moat and turrets made from shells and debris washed up onto the white sandy beach. They feel sure they will win!

But that night one of the children has a vivid dream about the sandcastle and the following day they are all amazed to discover that the dream has indeed come true.

Are they still in with a chance of a prize?

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Meet Clare Milford Haven

Clare Milford Haven has been writing for the past 30 years, with regular articles published in The Times, Evening Standard, Homes & Gardens and GQ as well as an eight-year stint on Tatler's editorial staff as their Social Editor.


Since the death of her eldest son James in 2006, Clare has devoted her time to the charity she set up in his memory, James’ Place. The first James’ Place, in Liverpool, was opened by HRH The Duke of Cambridge in June 2018. For further details, please visit the website:


Clare wrote The Magic Sandcastle some years ago, but filed it away, and only dug it out during lockdown in 2020. Clare’s mother, ‘Granny Annie’, was American and bought a house on Nantucket Island in the ‘60’s. The extended family traditionally spend every summer there.


Nantucket has only the happiest of memories for Clare and her family and she wanted to record those memories in the form of a children’s book. She also married her second husband George Milford Haven on a beach there in August 1997, so it is a place that is very dear to her heart.


The five main character’s in the book are Clare’s children James, Wenty and Louisa and her step-children Tatiana and Harry. When they were small, they spent most of their days on the beach in Nantucket, riding the waves and building sandcastles, so there was unlimited inspiration for the content of the book.


Clare lives in the UK on a farm in Hampshire with her husband George and their four children

Meet illustrator David William Press

David William Press is a charismatic illustrator who is passionate about bringing words to life. A musician by trade, David has found himself illustrating many books and bringing many characters to life. 

He works with high-profile authors including Sarah, Duchess of York and Clare Milford Haven.  

Creativity is at the core of every day in the life of David William Press, he is always working on something new to shine a bright creative light into the world. 

You can find more of David William Press' books at Serenity Press.

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