9780142402269 / 0142402265

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About the book:

Most novels only need a few original ideas to be interesting--but Lion Boyhas enough to make it truly special. The astonishing literary creation of adult novelist Louisa Young and her teenage daughter, Isabel Adomakoh Young, writing together as "Zizou Corder", has taken the children's publishing world by storm. It's the first part of a trilogy, which encompasses an incredible journey from London to Paris, and onto Venice and then Africa, that many have hailed as a genuine rival to Harry Potter.

It's certainly as engaging and unputdownable as any tome by Ms Rowling. This is the story of Charlie Ashanti, who discovers he can speak the language of cats after he is scratched by a big cat on a trip to Africa as a baby. It's a gift he has had all his life, but he only discovers how essential it can be when his scientist parents suddenly go missing. They were on the brink of a historic medical discovery and the suspicion is that somebody has kidnapped them. Charlie uses his network of cat friends to track their journey overseas to Paris, and to get across the English Channel he inadvertently joins the crew of a travelling Circus Ship.

The ship is, of course, an incredible place to be and amongst the many new friends he makes are six big, beautiful and proud lions who need his help to escape. Tracked by agents of his parents' kidnapper, Charlie is never out of danger and his arrival in Paris is marked by much drama and excitement.

Lion Boy scores most highly on its sheer readability and entertainment value. It's a fun, breeze of a read that would liven up any dull day. (Age 9 and over) --John McLay

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