Cricklepit Combined School has seen its fair share of 'problem cases' - Tyke Tyler, Gowie Corby, Charlie Lewis and Juniper Cantello. But when Ferret is marched by his dad to the front door on his first day, feeling sick with apprehension, he doesn't know that he too will become one of its heroes.
His big problem is that he can't read - not that he doesn't want to, he just can't. And then there is the bullying: Magnus and his gang stealing kids' money, while the teachers all think he can do no wrong. Thank goodness, then, for Mint and Beany, and Minty's mum ... and Sir.
This fifth story about Cricklepit Combined, immortalized so wonderfully in The Turbulent Term of Tyke Tiler, is vintage Gene Kemp, with all the humour, pathos, vivid language and gritty realism of its predecessors.
'Gene Kemp remains a first-rate storyteller.' Naomi Lewis, Observer