The Boyhood of Burglar Bill

Publisher: Penguin

Review

It is 1953, Coronation Year, and in Oldbury Town there is to be a local football competition, the Coronation Cup. Rood End Primary enters its two best teams, but there are a few others who want to make their mark too.

Malt Shovel Rovers is a team of odds and ends that includes: a girl, an infant and a wordless goalie. They acquire, in suspicious circumstances, a parcel of football shirts, and before long they have started to win games and supporters.

This is a warm-hearted and humorous story. It is as much about friendship and relationships as it is about football and is the second book in which Allan Ahlberg explores his own childhood. The pull of nostalgia will ensure the interest of adults too.

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