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Lion Boy by Zizou Corder
Published by Puffin Books, 2003

Lion Boy is written by a mother and daughter duo who write under the pseudonym of Zizou Corder. It is the first in a trilogy by mother Louisa Young (an adult novelist) and her 10-year-old daughter Isabel. It tells of an incredible journey from London to Paris, and on to Venice and then Africa. It has been hailed as a genuine rival to Harry Potter.

When Charlie’s parents are kidnapped, he realises it must have something to do with the fact that they are brilliant scientists and the brilliant work they do. They were on the brink of a historic medical discovery when they went missing. In an effort to find them he stows away on a circus ship and finds perfect allies in the circus lions with whom he can communicate in Cat language. They strike a deal; Charlie will help them to escape if they help him to find his parents.

Charlie is tracked by agents of his parents' kidnapper, and is never out of danger.
An immediately engaging story with an extraordinary hero, lots of adventure, a vivid depiction of circus life and lots of humour combine to make this a great story.
Look outs for parts 2 and 3 in the trilogy

The book ends suddenly with the lions trapped in a bathroom on the Orient Express. The frustration experienced by the reader will undoubtedly be an incentive to read the subsequent parts 2 and 3 when published.

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