There is nothing more joyous in life than getting to read the next book in a series where you absolutely love all the characters. I was so happy to get to spend time again with the delightfully eccentric Pepper family in ‘Knitbone Pepper Ghost Dog and the Last Circus Tiger’ by Claire Barker. Ross Collins once again provides the divine illustrations to compliment this wonderfully, written tale of our ghostly dog Knitbone and the other Beloveds who live at Starcross Hall.
Lord Pepper – or Hector Augustus Merriweather Pepper to give him his full name – has a simply marvellous idea to create the biggest hat collection in the world. He decides to consult Mad Hatter Monthly for inspiration and embarks on turning Starcross Hall into a tourist attraction blowing their entire fortune on his latest madcap venture. Unfortunately not everything goes to plan and it’s up to Knitbone and friends to use their spooky powers to try and turn the exhibition into the hottest ticket in town. With mysterious, unexplained happenings from our ghostly gang visitors soon start flooding in. Things take an interesting turn when a chance encounter with an old magazine leads the Peppers to invite the Circus Tombellini to Starcross. But the circus is hiding a dark, sad secret and the Beloveds uncover a mysterious creature lurking in the shadows. Throw in the remarkable Eye of Mumbai and a notorious jewel thief and you know that you are about to be taken on another epic adventure with the Pepper family.
This superbly entertaining story left me feeling all warm and happy inside. I adore the relationships between the Beloveds and their humans. Claire understands and perfectly conveys the unbreakable bond we have with our pets and how loss can be unbearable and leave a huge hole in our lives. It is filled with humour, craziness but mostly heart. The Pepper family’s joy and enthusiasm for life is totally endearing and you can’t help be charmed by their unusual lifestyle. All of the characters are wonderfully individual and so brilliantly crafted that they feel like long lost friends. Ross Collins provides the most beautiful, detailed illustrations which capture the exuberance and joy of this fantastic story. I particularly love his expressions which allow me to empathise with the characters absolutely. I really can’t ask for any more from a book it was a fantastic treat to read.
Knitbone Pepper Ghost Dog and the Last Circus Tiger is released on Tuesday 1st March 2016.
To find out more about Claire Barker you can visit her website:
To find out more about Ross Collins you can visit his website: