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When the Sky Falls (Paperback)
  • When the Sky Falls (Paperback)

When the Sky Falls (Paperback)

Paperback 320 Pages
Published: 03/06/2021
  • 10+ in stock

Usually dispatched within 2-3 working days

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Waterstones Says

As the Second World War escalates and bombs start to fall, Joseph is charged with protecting Adonis the gorilla in this nerve-shreddingly tense thriller based on a true story.

Winner of The British Book Awards 2022 Children's Fiction Book of the Year

Shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal 2022

Waterstones Children's Book of the Month for June 2021

Inspired by a true story. It's 1940, and Joseph has been packed off to stay with Mrs F, a gruff woman with no great fondness for children. To Joseph's amazement, she owns the rundown city zoo where Joseph meets Adonis, a huge silverback gorilla. Adonis is ferociously strong and dangerous, but Joseph finds he has an affinity with the lonely beast. But when the bombs begin to fall, it is up to Joseph to guard Adonis's cage should it be damaged by a blast. Will Joseph be ready to pull the trigger if it comes to it?

Publisher: Andersen Press Ltd
ISBN: 9781783449651
Number of pages: 320
Weight: 256 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 20 mm


'An extraordinary story with historical and family truth at its heart, that tells us as much about the present as the past. Deeply felt, movingly written, a remarkable achievement.' - Michael Morpurgo

'Complex, dark, intense and mysterious, When the Sky Falls is an astounding work of fiction. The characters have the knotty awkwardness of real people, and the whole book has that unfakeable feeling of truth. Earle takes us to some very dark places in this novel, but at the end he brings us back to the light. For years now Earle has been one of our finest writers for young people and here he is at the height of his considerable powers.' - Antony McGowan

'Phil Earle writes from the heart: a story about love and friendship and how animals can connect people in the darkest of times and allow them to heal.' - Gill Lewis

'A bold and beautiful story.' - Abi Elphinstone

'A raw and beautiful story about the power of kindness and hope.' - Anna James

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“An emotional & breath-taking read”

WWII is raging and whilst most children are being evacuated to the countryside, Joseph is being sent to the city by his grandma who can no longer cope with his angry outbursts. There he moves in with Mrs F, a woman... More

Paperback edition
Helpful? Upvote 34

“A wartime tale with a difference”

Joseph has a lot of anger bubbling to the surface due to his relationships with the adults that have all come and gone in his life. Being forced to move to stay with a complete stranger who is reluctant to have him... More

Paperback edition
Helpful? Upvote 33


This is an absolutely amazing novel. It's not the type of novel that I'd usually pick up, but I read the first page just to see what it was like, and then couldn't stop reading.

Set in London during... More

Paperback edition
3 similar books recommended
Helpful? Upvote 30

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