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The Ickabog

Written by J.K. Rowling

Adventure Stories Fantasy / Magical Featured Books for 11+ readers Featured Books for 7+ readers Featured Books for 9+ readers

LoveReading View on The Ickabog

A magical fairy-tale where the monsters appear awful and the characters have much to overcome!

This story is based on a bedtime story Rowling told to her own children over many bedtimes. When the first coronavirus lockdown started it was decided to publish this a chapter at a time online - so that families and young readers had something to look forward to in the difficult weeks that followed.  The story has now been published in a generous format hardback with illustrations provided by children from all over the world, all winners in the Ickabog artwork competition. 


This is very definitely a fairy-tale in the traditional manner.  The good land of Cornucopia gets slowly taken over by two devious Lords – gloriously named as Spittleworth and Flappoon – after a tragic accident whilst the King is on a hunt for the terrifying monster – the Ickabog. There follow awful machinations resulting in parents being thrown into the deep dark dungeons and their children being placed in a truly awful orphanage.  


But, as with all good fairy-tales, the ingenious captives, both young and old, manage to slowly outwit the bad guys – and is the monster really as awful as he or she has been painted?  


A delightful story that will appeal to many many children and families. The great joy of the book is the huge variety and creativity this book has stimulated in children all around the globe in their illustrations. A fun read!

Tricia Adams

The Ickabog Synopsis

The Ickabog is coming... A mythical monster, a kingdom in peril, an adventure that will test two children's bravery to the limit. Discover a brilliantly original fairy tale about the power of hope and friendship to triumph against all odds, from one of the world's best storytellers.

The kingdom of Cornucopia was once the happiest in the world. It had plenty of gold, a king with the finest moustaches you could possibly imagine, and butchers, bakers and cheesemongers whose exquisite foods made a person dance with delight when they ate them.

Everything was perfect - except for the misty Marshlands to the north which, according to legend, were home to the monstrous Ickabog. Anyone sensible knew that the Ickabog was just a myth, to scare children into behaving. But the funny thing about myths is that sometimes they take on a life of their own.

Could a myth unseat a beloved king? Could a myth bring a once happy country to its knees? Could a myth thrust two children into an adventure they didn't ask for and never expected?

If you're feeling brave, step into the pages of this book to find out...

The Ickabog Press Reviews

'A] gripping fairy tale, complete with delightful illustrations from young fans....ultimately it is a tale of good triumphing over evil, and a tribute to the power of hope and friendship. Surely set to become a classic. Children's Book of the Week - Press Association

[A] handsome volume...this is zinging storytelling with bite and a twist. It also has extraordinarily skilled and apt illustrations. -- Nicolette Jones - The Sunday Times

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781510202252
Publication date: 10/11/2020
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers an imprint of Hachette Children's Group
Format: Hardback

ISBN: 0000000005
Publication date: 26/05/2020
Publisher: Available Online Only
Format: Ebook

Book Information

ISBN: 9781510202252
Publication date: 10th November 2020
Author: J.K. Rowling
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers an imprint of Hachette Children's Group
Format: Hardback
Pagination: 288 pages
Suitable for: 11+ readers, 7+ readers, 9+ readers
Genres: Adventure Stories, Fantasy / Magical
Collections: Our favourite children's books of 2020,

About J.K. Rowling

J. K. (Jo) Rowling was born in Chipping Sodbury in the UK in 1965. She attended the University of Exeter in Devon where she studied French. Her parents hoped that by studying languages, she would enjoy a great career as a bilingual secretary. But as Jo recalls, 'I am one of the most disorganised people in the world and, as I later proved, the worst secretary ever.' She claims that she never paid much attention in meetings because she was too busy scribbling down ideas. When she was 26, she went to Portugal to teach English, which she really enjoyed. Working ...

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