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How Tom Beat Captain Najork and His Hired Sportsmen

Written by Russell Hoban

Illustrated by Quentin Blake

Featured Books for 5+ readers Featured Books for 7+ readers

LoveReading View on How Tom Beat Captain Najork and His Hired Sportsmen

A must-read for anyone who thinks that fooling about is a waste of time!  Through the brilliant combination of Russell Hoban and Quentin Blake, the story celebrates all the skills that children learn on their own. Tom likes nothing more than messing about whether it is sliding in the mud, wobbling about on high and dangerous things, dropping things from bridges and fishing them out or rolling around in barrels in alleys. His aunt disapproves of all such activities and threatens him with Captain Najork and his Hired Sportsmen who are known to be able to knock anyone into shape. But it turns out that Tom has learnt some things after all…as the title reveals!

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How Tom Beat Captain Najork and His Hired Sportsmen Synopsis

Tom loves to fool around. He fools around with dropping things from bridges into rivers and he fools around with barrels in alleys. He fools around so much that his maiden aunt, Miss Fidget Wonkham-Strong (who wears an iron hat and takes no nonsense from anyone), sends for Captain Najork and his hired sportsmen to teach Tom a lesson. Captain Najork, says Aunt Fidget Wonkham-Strong, is seven feet tall, with eyes like fire and a voice like thunder. He teaches fooling-around boys the lesson they so badly need, and it is not one that they soon forget. Captain Najork lays down a challenge: they will play womble, muck and speedball - in that order. And it turns out not to be Tom who gets taught a lesson after all!

This is a classic tale of the triumph of fooling-around fun over humourless no-nonsense adult disapproval!  This title was a HUGE favourite of thousands of '70s and '80s kids who are now book-buying parents. It deals with an eternally popular theme of a young hero's resourceful defiance of a despotic figure of authority. It is laugh-out-loud funny no matter how many times you re-read it.

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781406349528
Publication date: 03/04/2014
Publisher: Walker Books Ltd
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781406343830
Publication date: 07/11/2013
Publisher: Walker Books Ltd
Format: Hardback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781406343830
Publication date: 7th November 2013
Author: Russell Hoban
Illustrator: Quentin Blake
Publisher: Walker Books Ltd
Format: Hardback
Pagination: 32 pages
Suitable for: 5+ readers, 7+ readers
Other Categories: Bookshelf Essentials

About Russell Hoban

As a child Russell Hoban was born in Pennsylvania, USA. His parents were Jewish immigrants from the Ukraine; his father was the advertising manager of a Jewish newspaper as well as a dram guild director. Russell was thus exposed to the arts early on, and became interested in writing at an early age, winning prizes for his stories and poems during his school years. As an adult Russell served in the US Infantry during WWII. For a time he taught art in New York and Connecticut. He then worked as a freelance illustrator and an advertising copywriter. He began publishing ...

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