Aubrey and the Terrible Ladybirds


By Horatio Clare | Illustrations by Jane Matthews
Published May 2017 | ISBN 9781910080504

It’s the Easter holidays, you’ve just become as small as an earwig, the swallows are back (and offering you rides), and a spider wakes you up in the middle of the night and asks you to save the world. Then, as if that weren’t enough, the Ladybirdz turn up from Bohemia to find Rushing Wood does not want them…

The world of Aubrey, the boy who can talk to animals (and understand the answers), grows larger and faster in this moving and hilarious story from award-winning children’s author Horatio Clare.

The first Aubrey adventure Aubrey and the Terrible Yoot, won the Branford Boase Award for the best first children’s book of 2016.

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Praise for the book

Nominated for the CILIP Carnegie Medal 2018 | Shortlisted for the Stockton Children’s Book of the Year 2018

Longlisted for the 2018 UKLA Book Awards | Longlisted for the Shrewsbury Best Book Award 2018

‘Clare’s debut, Aubrey and the Terrible Yoot, which dealt magically with the subject of depression, won the Branford Boase award for a first children’s book. This sequel, again about Aubrey, who can talk to animals, tackles big themes, too, in the guise of a fantastical adventure. But it manages to impart its important messages entertainingly. The story celebrates wildlife, compassion, the exhilaration of flight and travel, and has a cast of lively characters.’ Nicolette Jones, Sunday Times Children’s Book of the Week

‘In Horatio Clare’s Aubrey and the Terrible Ladybirds, illustrated by Jane Matthews, a miniaturised hero must save the polluted world from an enormous snail. Yes, it’s an eco-fable, but Clare’s sensitive wit makes it urgent.’ Amanda Craig, selected as one of New Statesman‘s Best Children’s Books of 2017

‘I found myself enchanted by this wonderful story. The plethora of insects, mammals and arachnid characters are colourful and superb – this is about intolerance, the environment and natural history – a gorgeous extraordinary mix – like nothing else I have come across… ’ Sue, Waterstones, Finchley Rd

‘An entertaining new story… Aubrey learns much about relationships … and about how everyone must share if the world is to be a better place.’ Julia Eccleshare, Lovereading4Kids

‘This lively chapter book is a funny, smart look at the differences and similarities we share with creatures, great and small.’ BookTrust

‘Complemented by wonderful illustrations, this is a fantastical and fantastic read celebrating the importance of compassion, tolerance, acceptance and the need to appreciate people for who they are. With a cast of small yet larger than life characters, including a diminutive Aubrey, this story has, at its heart, an inspirational message – everyone, even the smallest among us, can change the world.’ Children’s Books Ireland

‘This was not just a book, it was a crazy, imaginative warning to the earth.’ Reuben Lunt, age 10, Lovereading4Kids

Aubrey and the Terrible Ladybirds is a fantastic book. Nine year old Noah “absolutely loved it” because it was full of awesome adventure and has slotted it next to Terrible Yoot in his Top Ten books… Aubrey and the Terrible Ladybirds is a book about the universal truths of love, compassion and kindness – to each other, to the environment and to the animals.’ Family Book Worms

‘Tackling big issues of love, immigration and the environment in a way that builds empathy, understanding and tolerance, this is a quirky, captivating and thought-provoking adventure that grips you from the start. With fabulous footnotes to aid understanding, Horatio Clare entertains and educates with ease. Jane Matthew’s illustrations add an extra depth of warmth and humour.’ Miss Cleaveland is Reading

‘Exceptional storytelling combined with an exploration of important issues that the world is currently facing makes Aubrey and the Terrible Ladybirds a must have read.’ BookLover Jo

‘Aubrey and the Terrible Ladybirds is a very funny book that uses fiction to make you think.’ Scoop magazine (issue 14) review by Robyn, age 8

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