The Quest of the Warrior Sheep by Christopher Russell, Christine Russell | | Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Quest of the Warrior Sheep

Quest of the Warrior Sheep

4.1 23
by Christopher Russell
     
 

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"I loved this book from the first chapter to the last." -John Lloyd, The Bookbag

"Hilarious crime caper involving a gang of sheep and a mobile phone...what more could you ask for?" -Books Monthly

"...The most unlikely of all epic adventure novels you will ever come across." -James, Kid's Compass

OH MY GRASS!

When Sal the sheep is

Overview

"I loved this book from the first chapter to the last." -John Lloyd, The Bookbag

"Hilarious crime caper involving a gang of sheep and a mobile phone...what more could you ask for?" -Books Monthly

"...The most unlikely of all epic adventure novels you will ever come across." -James, Kid's Compass

OH MY GRASS!

When Sal the sheep is bonked on the head by an unidentified falling object, it can only mean one thing: Lord Aries, the Sheep of all Sheepdom is in trouble, and the sheep posse must save him.

Little do the sheep know that the mysterious object is actually a cell phone dropped by a couple of baaaaad bank robbers who will do anything to get it back. And a couple of woolbags aren't going to stand in their way!

And so the quest of the Warrior Sheep begins.
The bravest sheep in the universe are in for a wild ride!

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In a series launch, this husband-and-wife team sends a quirky group of characters careening across England at a madcap pace. When a mobile phone falls from the sky and onto a field, five rare-breed sheep with distinct personalities (and a love for rap music) are convinced that it is the magical Baaton of ancient ovine prophecy, and that they must return the item to its rightful owner, Lord Aries. Dropped from a hot air balloon by two bumbling bank employees who have scammed customers out of their savings, the phone actually contains evidence of the crime. One of their victims is the feisty owner of the sheep, who (with her grandson in tow) pursues her missing animals, as do the bankers, who are intent on retrieving the phone. While the sheep's final goal feels tenuous, it's all about the journey: barnyard puns (including a llama lama who speaks in parables) and the running conceit of the herd's unusual intelligence, despite their share of woolly-headed moments, will go a long way in keeping middle-grade readers engaged. Ages 9–12. (Feb.)
From the Publisher
"The five rare-breed sheep of dear old Ida White's Eppingham farm are having a good cud chew one afternoon when something strange falls from the heavens and clocks Sal, an officious but well-meaning ewe, on the noggin. She's sure it's the Baaton of Aries, Ram of Rams; it must be returned to him in the North Country before Lambad the Bad gets hold of it. Off they hoof, following the prophecy in the Song of Fleece. Hot on their tails is geeky human Luke, who needs the Baaton-er, cell phone-or the bank funds he illegally shifted on a dare will be discovered. He's closely followed by local UFO-nut Tony, who's sure the sheep have been abducted and modified by aliens, and Ida and her grandson who just want their beloved ovine friends home safe. The first adventure (with another on the way) of the Warrior Sheep by the British husband-and-wife pair is planted firmly in Wallace and Gromit country. Young fans of deadpan Brit humor will enjoy this fleecy romp... (Animal fantasy. 8-12) " - Kirkus

"The rapid pacing of The Quest of the Warrior Sheep, snappy dialogue, and outrageously funny British humor made this a hit with my students... I thoroughly enjoyed The Quest of the Warrior Sheep and read it in one sitting... The action kept moving the story along and this reader was willing to suspend disbelief to simply enjoy this adventure. I read parts of The Quest of the Warrior Sheep aloud and every time was requested to read more. I cannot wait until you put this title in your hands and meet these awesome Warrior Sheep — Oxo, Links, Jaycey, Wills, and Sal." - SLJ blog Practically Paradise

"This is it!! Hilarious, original, and first in a series! The Quest of the Warrior Sheep by Christine and Christopher Russell is sure to be a hit for all those younger readers looking for a new series to enjoy! It is the adventure of 5 sheep - and boy do they ever have adventures! There is not a dull moment with these guys! They are laugh-out-loud funny and another series that has strong boy-appeal, which is a bonus as well. I am excited to see more in this series - they are sure to please!" - In the Pages

"Who knew a little flock of sheep could lead a duo of bungling thieves on a merry chase around England? It helped that both of humans have an IQ slightly lower than a sheep's. This silly story kept me laughing as I wondered just how the sheep were going to escape from the criminals and save the day.

When a cell phone falls from the sky and hits Sal on the head, she thinks it's a sign from the god of sheep, Aries. She thinks that he's in danger, waging battle against Lambad, his eternal rival. She convinces the rest of her little flock of exotic breed sheep that they have a part to play in an ancient prophecy, and if they don't, dire consequences are sure to follow.

So, what happens when a flock of sheep set out to save the world? Complete chaos. What the intrepid flock doesn't know is that the phone has been used to commit a crime, and the men who dropped it will do anything to get it back. The sheep have their work cut out for them, as they try to stay one step ahead of the villains and help Aries in his fight against Lambad!

From the first "Ohmygrass!" I was hooked on The Quest of the Warrior Sheep. From the moment our hoofed protagonists leave the comfort and safety of their little pasture, they unleash a comedy of errors that leads all of their pursuers on a wild goose chase. From neighbor Tony, who is obsessed with aliens and is certain that the sheep have been abducted by alien invaders, to Tod and Gran, who love their sheep and just want them back home safe and sound, I was hard pressed to decide who was smarter — the humans or the sheep.

This fun MG read keeps the excitement, and the laughs, in overdrive. Fighting against their natural instincts to just stand around and eat grass, the sheep muster up every ounce of bravery to return the "Baaton" to Aries so he can defeat Lambad once and for all. Little do they suspect that their jaunt around the countryside will involve a train ride, thieves, a truckload of manure, and even a secret government installation. Cute and humorous, I was delighted to learn that the sheep are going to have another adventure soon. Perhaps they will even be able to eat one of their favorite treats — cauliflower." - Manga Maniac Cafe

"The Quest of the Warrior Sheep by Christine and Christopher Russell will have you laughing out loud as you follow the adventures of five sheep and their human pursuers. One is sure they have been abducted and altered by aliens, two want to retrieve the cell phone and destroy incriminating evidence it holds, and Tod and Gran just want to get their sheep back.

These sheep have quite a few adventures, all resulting from hilarious misunderstandings by both ovines and humans. As the quest continued, I didn't see how the story could possibly be resolved, but the authors serve up a satisfying ending for all...well, almost. You'll have to read it to see. This is the first in what promises to be a delightful series aimed at readers aged eight to 12. I highly recommend it." - Mother Daughter Book Club

"This book will have you laughing your belly off! You are able to have a blast following the adventures of the five sheep and the humans that are trying to catch them. With a plot that incorporates things such as concepts like being abducted by aliens, destroying incriminating evidence or simply going home, this story has a little bit of everything for any reader!

What was most funny in this story was the number of misunderstandings that bring forth a ton of hilarious adventures. As you read on, I know that I simply wanted to see how the author would conclude all of the differing storylines, but amazingly they did, and I can say that I was satisfied with how things came together and I am sure you will be as well.

My daughters also enjoyed the book and they too wanted to see how the story would end. While they did not understand everything they still laughed and loved reading about the sheep. They even asked whether there were other stories about the sheep." - Dad of Divas' Reviews

"OH MY GRASS! Christopher Russell has written a sheepishly funny caper of adventurous and superstitious rare sheep, alien sightings, a cell phone bank heist and a little romance between a city girl and a common farm boy. There are also some very "baaad" characters that learn not to mess with sheep on a quest!
Highly recommended for a fun read that will make "Ewe" smile." - Spot to Read

"The Warrior Sheep are brave and resourceful even if they are a little misguided. The Quest of the Warrior Sheep has all ingredients of a good tale: humor, like-able protagonists, unlikeable villains, danger, and mystery. " - Overstuffed Bookbag

"We had a chance to review The Quest of the Warrior Sheep by Christine & Christopher Russell. The 5 rare breed sheep have quite a few adventures after one of them is hit on the head by a cell phone. Thinking it was a sign from their great Lord Aries, the sheep travel north to return the "Baaton" as they call it, to the rightful owner.

With two bank robbers in pursuit who want the incriminating evidence back, a farmer who believes the sheep were abducted by aliens, and Tod & Ida who just want their sheep home, the sheep outwit them all in their quest north. This book is sure to keep you laughing.

The Quest of the Warrior Sheep

My now 7-year-old loved the book. Although I found she had a little bit of trouble keeping the characters straight, she loved the humor in the book and was always eager to read more. She is excited that there is another book in the series The Warrior Sheep Go West. It looks like we will be making a trip to the book store!" - 2 Wired 2 Tired

"This is a story five rare sheep who have ram cell phone , and trying to return it to Aries. This cell phone is important because it information about a robbery of millions of dollars.

These sheep are named Sal, Oxo, Links, Wills, Jaycey and its their tale into the city and mountain side. We do get to see some human interaction with the sheep. I loved the tongue in cheek with Hotel name.

Best Line: Ohmygrass

Cute story for kids and loved all the action of sheep trying to follow the Songs of the Fleece." - My 5 Monkeys

"In a series launch, this husband-and-wife team sends a quirky group of characters careening across England at a madcap pace. When a mobile phone falls from the sky and onto a field, five rare-breed sheep with distinct personalities (and a love for rap music) are convinced that it is the magical Baaton of ancient ovine prophecy, and that they must return the item to its rightful owner, Lord Aries. Dropped from a hot air balloon by two bumbling bank employees who have scammed customers out of their savings, the phone actually contains evidence of the crime. One of their victims is the feisty owner of the sheep, who (with her grandson in tow) pursues her missing animals, as do the bankers, who are intent on retrieving the phone. While the sheep's final goal feels tenuous, it's all about the journey: barnyard puns (including a llama lama who speaks in parables) and the running conceit of the herd's unusual intelligence, despite their share of woolly-headed moments, will go a long way in keeping middle-grade readers engaged. Ages 9—12. (Feb.) " - Publishers Weekly

"It's quite an adventure. We finished reading it this morning, and both Bubs and Welly have separately already asked me to start reading it again." - Homespun Light

"My first one that may go in the bag is The Quest of the Warrior Sheep. This is a fun lil farce in juvenile fiction. Following just what Sal the sheep does when he was bonked on the head by an UFO. Rushing to the others they decide that it is a sign that Lord Aries is in trouble. The sheep posse takes off to save him while having to battle the bank robbers who are looking for their UFO (actually a cell phone). I can't wait to get the next book, The Warrior Sheep go West. I am sure that it will be just as fun." - Crazed Mind

"For readers who like car cashes, unlikely heroes, and plenty of wildly amusing action, this book is a must. The characters are deliciously funny, and readers will find themselves rooting for the five sheep, who truly are heroes." - Through the Looking Glass

SLJ blog Practically Paradise
The rapid pacing of The Quest of the Warrior Sheep, snappy dialogue, and outrageously funny British humor made this a hit with my students... I thoroughly enjoyed The Quest of the Warrior Sheep and read it in one sitting... The action kept moving the story along and this reader was willing to suspend disbelief to simply enjoy this adventure. I read parts of The Quest of the Warrior Sheep aloud and every time was requested to read more. I cannot wait until you put this title in your hands and meet these awesome Warrior Sheep — Oxo, Links, Jaycey, Wills, and Sal.
— Diane Chen
School Library Journal
Gr 4–6—The five inhabitants of Eppingham Rare Sheep Farm are relaxing in their pasture when a silver object falls from the sky. Matriarch Sal is convinced that it is the legendary Baaton, a powerful relic of ancient prophecy. According to the Songs of the Fleece, the artifact is crucial in the war between the great sheep god Aries and his evil rival Lambad the Bad. Sal convinces the other sheep that they must journey to Aries's home to return the Baaton and save the world. Meanwhile, two crooks who dropped a cell phone loaded with stolen bank data out of their getaway hot-air balloon are trying to get the evidence back; a shy farmer and an attractive TV reporter are on the hunt for sheep-stealing UFO aliens, and a boy and his slightly dotty great-grandmother just want their livestock returned. The convoluted, Saturday-morning cartoon-style plot follows all four groups across the English countryside, through the center of London, and up into the highlands-by train, Tube, airplane, and manure truck. There are wild chases, car crashes, near misses, and lots of side excursions and misunderstandings. Even the government gets into the act-in the thoroughly inefficient form of the British Alien Research Military Intelligence. The dialogue is frequently amusing, although "Valley Girl" sheep Jaycey's constant dithering, "Ohmygrass!" becomes monotonous. Unfortunately, the rap talk of Link Longwool (shown on the cover as a black sheep) borders on stereotype—"The Warrior Sheeps is all fleeced up 'n' ready,/We's brave and we's true/and we's real rock steady." This lighthearted, but rather lightweight fantasy doesn't compare to classic animal quests such as Brian Jacques's "Redwall" series (Philomel).—Elaine E. Knight, Lincoln Elementary Schools, IL
Kirkus Reviews
The five rare-breed sheep of dear old Ida White's Eppingham farmare having a good cud chew one afternoon when something strange falls from the heavens and clocks Sal, an officious but well-meaning ewe, on the noggin. She's sure it's the Baaton of Aries, Ram of Rams; it must be returned to him in the North Country before Lambad the Bad gets hold of it. Off they hoof, following the prophecy in the Song of Fleece. Hot on their tails is geeky human Luke, who needs the Baaton—er, cell phone—or the bank funds he illegally shifted on a dare will be discovered. He's closely followed by local UFO-nut Tony, who's sure the sheep have been abducted and modified by aliens, and Ida and her grandson who just want their beloved ovine friends home safe. The first adventure (with another on the way) of the Warrior Sheep by the British husband-and-wife pair is planted firmly in Wallace and Gromit country. Young fans of deadpan Brit humor will enjoy this fleecy romp, though it may take some time before they fully understand all of the cultural witticisms. (Animal fantasy. 8-12)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781402255113
Publisher:
Sourcebooks
Publication date:
02/01/2011
Pages:
224
Sales rank:
758,931
Product dimensions:
5.42(w) x 7.71(h) x 0.61(d)
Lexile:
660L (what's this?)
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

Read an Excerpt

The Baaton
All the sheep were chewing cud when it happened.
Actually, that's not quite true, because Oxo, the enormous Oxford ram, had finished chewing and was butting a fence post that had given him a funny look. Links, the Lincoln Longwool with floppy curls, was composing a rap. Jaycey, the pretty little Jacob, was painting her hooves with mud and sheep-dip. And Wills, the orphaned Balwen Welsh lamb, was wishing he was at football practice.
In fact, of the five rare breed sheep in Ida White's field in Eppingham, only Sal, the Southdown with a wide bottom and thin legs, was really chewing cud. She was sitting, digesting yesterday's grass, passing it from one stomach to the next, and thinking about the olden days. Sal was proud to be a sheep, a member of the great and ancient family Ovis. She worried sometimes that the younger generation, even the four other rare breeds with whom she shared her paddock, no longer cared about their glorious heritage.
That had been her thought as she'd stood up to sing verse 167 of her favorite poem, "...Songs of the Fleece." Then, quite suddenly, the lights went out. Of course, fields don't have lights as such, but that's what it seemed like. Sal felt a sudden, sharp bang on the head and her legs buckled under her. Next, she saw flashing lights and bursting stars. Now, as she opened her eyes, she saw a little shadow. Had there been a different shadow, a bigger, blacker shadow, before the bang on the head? She wasn't sure.
The small shadow was caused by Wills. Wills was short and skinny, so he didn't block out much sunlight.
"Thank Aries you're alive!" he said, then turned to call the others. "Over here, you guys. Sal's been hit."
Wills's voice sounded faint in Sal's ears.
"Quickly!" he urged.
The others, who had been ambling across the field, increased their speed to a gallop. They stood around Sal, wondering what to do. Jaycey noticed a tiny cut on Sal's head.
"Ohmygrass!" she exclaimed. "She's bleeding." She wobbled on her dainty hooves and fainted.
"Fat lot of help she is," grunted Oxo.
Wills turned towards the farmhouse where their owner, Ida White, lived with Tod, her grandson. "I'll fetch help," he said.
But Sal called him back.
"No," she groaned. "Just dab me with a dock leaf." She tried again to sit up. "What happened?"
"Something fell out of the sky," said Wills, "and bounced off the top of your head."
"I'm glad it didn't fall on me," said Jaycey, recovering from her faint. "Blood is soooo unattractive."
Oxo and Links began looking around, though they didn't have a clue what for.
"Was it this?" asked Links. His searching nose had bumped into a small, silvery object with stud-like buttons and a square of blue plastic. There were words printed above the square: ramrom.com. Most sheep cannot read but Wills could because he had been brought up in the farmhouse kitchen.
"Ramrom dot com," he read aloud.
"Dot what?" said Oxo. But he wasn't really interested. He was peering at the small golden symbol above the printed words: a picture of a ram's head. Sal peered at it too.
"It's a mobile phone," said Wills amazed.
"It's a ram!" exclaimed Sal.
"It's a ram on a mobile phone," said Wills correctly.
But Sal wasn't listening.
"A ram with golden horns..." she murmured. "A ram with down-turned, golden horns..." She turned to Wills. "It fell from the sky, you said?"
Wills nodded. "Yes."
"And did you see a shadow?" she asked. "Before it fell?"
Wills nodded again.
"Yeah, I saw it too, innit," exclaimed Links. They had all noticed the loss of sunlight and the enormous dark shadow on the grass.
Sal looked at them gravely.
"Surely you see what this means?" she said.
Clearly they didn't. Sal struggled to her feet.
"You can't all have forgotten the ancient prophecy," she cried.
They had.
Ignoring their blank looks and the pain in her head, Sal began to quote from the Songs of the Fleece.
"Whilst the great Lord Aries lies
In his field above the skies
With the Baaton lying near,
There's nought to fear."
She paused, then started again, loudly, making Jaycey jump.
"But one day, Lambad the Bad,
Who is evil, maybe mad,
Will try to steal the Baaton
From our king!"

Meet the Author

Christopher Russell was a postman when he had his first radio play broadcast in 1975. He has since been a full-time television and radio script writer, and, recently a children's novelist. While his wife, Christine, has always been closely involved with his work, this is the first book they've written together.

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