After a run-in with the scariest street cat in the Big City, fox cub siblings Ted and Nancy flee for Grimwood, expecting to find refuge in the peaceful countryside.

Instead, they are met with thieving eagles, dramatic ducks, riotous rabbits and an absurd game called Treebonk! While Ted quickly falls in love with his wacky new neighbours, Nancy thinks they’re all bonkers. But she soon discovers that, as kooky they are, the animals of Grimwood always look out for each other.  Now Nancy and Ted must ask themselves an important question: yes, Grimwood may be weird, but could it also be … home?

Grimwood brims with hilarity, adventure, and quirky illustrations in a fresh and invigorating way.  It is irreverent and always very, very funny.  Nadia Shireen makes her first, and completely successful, foray into children’s fiction writing and this is absurdly relatable and hugely silly!

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Nadia Shireen

(Simon & Schuster) 

Fox siblings Ted and Nancy live in the big city, where there’s plenty of food to be scavenged from the bins behind the chicken shop.  Both of them are used to the grimy streets and even grimier pigeons and rats.
Nancy is the tough older sister, and fiercely protective of her little brother Ted.  When Ted accidentally bites scary and insufferable cat Princess Buttons’ tail off, the two foxes need somewhere to lie low. What better place than Grimwood?  The faraway forest has furry woodland creatures that play endless games of ‘Treebonk’, eagles that chew electrical cables and tough-talking bunnies that gambol under shady trees.
Following directions given to them by a lovelorn rat, Ted and Nancy discover Grimwood and start to make themselves at home. However Princess Buttons is hot on their heels.  Ted enjoys the distraction of involvement in a local theatre production, but he’s an easy target for Buttons. Fortunately, the animals of Grimwood have a few tricks up their sleeve to save their new fox friends.
Nadia Shireen has established a deserved reputation for very funny and inventive picture books.  This is her first illustrated early chapter book and it is a brilliantly hilarious and heartwarming tale.  It has just the right amount of gross content to satisfy most young readers!  There is a subtle underlying storyline about the fact that Ted and Nancy’s parents have abandoned them. This partly explains why Nancy is so defensive when it comes to Ted.  Yet, in the final reckoning, it is Shireen’s gloriously anarchic sense of humour and illustration which really steals the show.
Bookwagon has several of Nadia Shireen’s books in its on-line bookshop, such as Slug in Love and Billy and the Beast.


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