title: St Grizzle’s School for Girls, Goats and Random Boys
words: Karen McCombie
pictures: Becka Moor
publisher: Little Tiger Press
orig pub year: 2017
series: St Grizzle’s #1
version reviewed: PB 2017
(from Little Tiger Press)
When Dani’s mum gets the chance to study penguins in the Antarctic, she decides the best place for eleven-year-old Dani is a strict girls’ boarding school where – uh-oh! – students wear smart uniforms that includes SKIRTS!
Having failed to change Mum’s mind, Dani finds herself having to say goodbye to Granny Viv, her dog Downboy and best friend Arch. But when they arrive at St Grizelda’s it seems that there’s been some drastic changes; gone are the uniforms and the rules, and in are chaos, anarchy and, er, goats. Surely Mum’s not going to leave her at the mercy of a crazy head-butting goat, a bunch of eight-year-olds masquerading as mutant goblins and a head teacher wearing a crown of picnic cutlery?
But as a homesick Dani waits for Mum to make alternative arrangements, the madness of St Grizzle’s begins to warm Dani’s heart…
With a definite whiff of St Trinian’s about it, St Grizzle’s is a laugh-out-loud middle grade read by best-selling author Karen McCombie, perfect for fans of A Murder Most Unladylike and Scarlet and Ivy.
I read both Beaky Malone and St Grizzle’s in preparation for this blog tour, although I’d already chosen St Grizzle’s side, and I made the right choice in terms of Chaos Castle preference but Beaky Malone was very funny and well worth a read too. I’m not good at taking sides in battles!
St Grizzle’s School for Girls, Goats and Random Boys (and we so love that title) starts with ten year old Dani not really listening to her mum before realising what she’s missed is her future life at a BOARDING SCHOOL while her mum goes to watch penguins’ bums.
I’ve been reading this aloud to my 7yo and she found it very funny. The complete chaos of St Grizzle’s (formerly Griselda’s) school very much appeals here! Classes in circus skills and den making, or learning the Periodic Table song sound far more fun than sitting at desks.
I liked how St Grizzle’s managed to include diverse characters without it feeling forced, and because of the “random boys” this is a story to appeal to all genders, despite being set in a girls’ school. The lack of gender stereotyping is refreshing, and the up-to-date nature (Dani makes stop motion films on her phone for YouTube) makes St Grizzle’s directly relatable to today’s children.
Every night had to include “just one more chapter” because we wanted to find out what would happen next. and we can’t wait for book 2 which has the equally awesome title of St Grizzle’s School for Girls, Ghosts and Runaway Grannies.
Chaos Castle is delighted to welcome Becka Moor, who has written about her school days for the tour:
What I was like at school… by Becka Moor
I was a bit of a teacher’s pet to be honest. I went to a very small primary school where there was only about 12 of us in the class so it was nice and cosy. When I saw Karen’s character description for Ms Murphy I automatically thought about one of my old teachers who was a little bit bonkers and very fun to be around, so I definitely pulled a bit of inspiration when doodling her.
Many thanks to Stripes for asking us on the tour, and for Becka’s mini blog. You can catch up with the rest of the School Wars Blog Tour at these blogs: