The No.1 Car Spotter


No.1 earned his name through his uncanny ability to name and identify any car coming near the village well ahead of anyone else sighting or hearing it. It means he can give the alert that Mama Coca-Cola can prepare the akara and Coca-Cola can fetch the soft drinks cooling in the river. However most of the women in the village think that No.1’s ability is a waste of time. That’s because there is so much to grow and harvest for market day.

So, what happens when the baskets to carry all the vegetables and fruits and dried fish crack under the strain? How can the goods be carried to market now? Furthermore, without market sales how can the village buy what they need, from sugar to fuel, to lipstick? Can No.1 come to their aid?

The No.1 Car Spotter is a really satisfying, fascinating, witty chapter book that readers of all ages will enjoy. However, Bookwagon suggests it is an especially great choice for readers who are newer to chapter books. We look forward to bringing further titles in this series!

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The No.1 Car Spotter

Best in the village- maybe in the world!


Illustrated by Warwick Johnson Cadwell

(Walker Books)

The No.1 Car Spotter learned at his grandfather’s knee. Car spotting is his A,B, C…. ‘Aston Martin, Audi, Bentley, Cadillac, Citroën….’ It means that well before anyone else in the village has seen or heard any passing vehicle, No.1 gives the alert. Then Mama Coca-Cola fires the engine to cook the akara while Coca- Cola runs to the river for soft drinks. Meanwhile No.1’s mama and grandmother grow and pick palm nuts, yams, mango and orange, and tend their goats. Like the other families in the compounds, the fathers work in the cities and send money home.
No.1’s favourite car is a Toyota Corolla. There’s one broken down in the village that seems hopeless. Might No.1 have a flash of inspiration as to its use? Might it be that the Corolla could be fashioned into something new and wonderful for market day? Thereafter, how has No.1 arrived at his name? What of the other names in the village?
As with Akissi Tales of Mischief, readers are transported to a new setting and different continent. While Akissi lives in urban Ivory Coast, No.1 lives in rural Nigeria. However, the humour and community described in The No.1 Car Spotter are the same so that we feel connected immediately. Furthermore, No.1 is an endearing, inspired and proud character. Bookwagon is delighted to introduce you!


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