The class book review: Horace and Harriet Take on the Town by Clare Elsom

An uproarious adventure with magic at its heart

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Horace and Harriet Take on the Town

By Clare Elsom

OUP Children’s Books

128pp, £5.99, paperback

ISBN 9780192758743

Lord Commander Horatio Frederick Wallington Nincompoop Maximus Pimpleberry the Third – or Horace, for short – is a statue. He has been in Princes Park for centuries: a monument to celebrate his victory in the most fierce and terrifying battle there has ever been.

However, being covered in pigeon poo, graffiti and litter isn’t something that Horace finds enjoyable. In fact, it makes him incredibly cross.

The story begins with seven-year-old Harriet and her grandfather taking a walk through Princes Park at the exact moment when Horace decides to get down off his plinth and walk away, determined to find a new home. How will our intrepid – and often utterly ridiculous – hero navigate the modern world? Why, with the help of the fearless, kind and resourceful young Harriet, of course.

Horace and Harriet Take on the Town is a hilarious adventure, with a touch of magic and an abundance of heart. Clare Elsom has created lovable, unforgettable characters who jump off the page, grab us by the hand and pull us into their uproarious and delightful tale. The charming illustrations bring the characters to life and connect the reader to their story.

Anna Tomlinson is a teaching assistant at Valley Park Primary School in Sheffield


Pupil reviews

‘It made me smile’

I loved Horace and Harriet Take on the Town. It made me smile. It was an adventurous and hilarious book. My favourite character was Harriet because she is helpful and kind. I really enjoyed this book and would love to read another adventure by this author.

Alfreda, age 9


‘Exciting, funny and adventurous’

I like this book because there’s a statue that comes to life. This book is exciting, funny and adventurous. My favourite character was Horace because he is brave and a bit silly.

Max, age 9


‘A lot of tricky words’

My favourite characters are Barry the pigeon and Horace the statue. My favourite part of the story was when Barry pooed on someone’s face – it was so funny!

As there are a lot of tricky words in it, I had to stop and ask what some of them meant, but I really enjoyed Horace and Harriet Take on the Town.

Mia, age 8


‘Some of the characters can be a bit silly’

I loved Horace and Harriet Take on the Town. It’s a funny book and some of the characters can be a bit silly.

My favourite character is Barry the pigeon, because he is friendly. I would recommend this book to children 8 years old and above.

Lexa, age 9


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