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The Quest of the Warrior Sheep

The 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


When Sal the sheep is


"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


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.)
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

Publication date:
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
File size:
823 KB
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 had a successful career in British television drama before becoming a children's novelist.

Christine has always been closely involved in his work. Now, they are writing together. The Warrior Sheep Go West is their second book, following closely on the hooves of The Quest of the Warrior Sheep.

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Quest of the Warrior Sheep 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 23 reviews.
debsdj More than 1 year ago
I was intrigued by the storyline so I bought the book on a lark. I commend Christine and Christopher Russell on their ability to imagine being "in a sheep's shoes" for this whimsical adventure. It's really not adult reading unless you enjoy a simple imaginative romp. I'm glad I read it. The book made me smile and laugh several times. If you choose to read it for fun, remember this is NOT serious or realistic reading. It IS a great story to read to children!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I find it difficult to find good chapter books for boys; I liked the cover (as did my 7 year old); He did struggle with the vocabulary, so it is more of a read with parent or older sibling kind of book. Very cute, and engaging.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. It was very funny, especially the raps! This book is great family entertainment. I would love to see this as a movie! You can picture everything as you read. My daughter will read it next, then I'll read it to my students.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a wonderful book and I highly reccomend reading it and the rest of the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Best book eva it is soooooooo funny because like the sheep are so funny!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!EVERYONE SHOULD HAVE THIS BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!It is the best book i have ever read
HaystackersWife More than 1 year ago
My son, who is in 3rd grade, loved this book. We have to read it at least once every other week. He couldn't wait to see how it ended. Very cute premise. Hoping for more by these authors.
easterdm More than 1 year ago
OK, some of the story is a wee bit predictable ... but not really, you just think it is predicatable. I truly fun, light read good for all ages. The little ones won't get the gist of all of the story line, but there is enough there for all to enjoy. The story begins with a cell phone falling from the sky ... into the world of some sheep who narrate most of the tale from their perspective of what the cell phone may be ...
kiska24 More than 1 year ago
I bought this book as a Daily Find. This one was worth every penny. The story was hilarious. The characters were believable and I loved the story premise. The imagination of the author was quite creative. This is like a kids version of the movie "The God's Must be Crazy." I actually just recommended it for one of my fourth grade students who is a reluctant reader. She is going to have her mom get it for her e-reader. Another student is going to check it out from the library. I love books going viral in my classroom. Even better when they are age appropriate.
jakm42 More than 1 year ago
I frequently buy kid's books, but this was just a bit younger than I usually go. As an adult reading this book for myself, I actually think it was a pretty good read. It had a lot of off-the-wall, cliff-hanger type sentences to end a chapter -- such as "....and that was when the aliens arrived." And those bizarre, little, cliff hangers made you want to continue reading. It would have genuine appeal to the age group for which it was written and it would it appeal to both boy and girls. I'd recommend it. If I had a child the right age, I'd buy it for him/her. * Spoiler Alert below * * * * * * * There aren't any aliens.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This a pretty boring start to the series. But a better story is written in Go West. This shows what they are going to do in the rest of the series although you may want to start on book two. Read book two and then three.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I just started on this book and i'm really liking it and I been reading this book a lot for just a day.:-)
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I acualy used this book to compare and contrast ( aka simmalaritys and diffrerntces) to my third grade class the laughed so hard their faces turned red. Also they did a really good job comparing and contrasting after i read this nook book on my ipad!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really really liked this book. I would recommend this book for kids ages 6-10. The best part about the book is that no matter how old you are, you would still enjoy this book!
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I absolutely adored it! If you have a sense of humor you should get the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hi, I'm a sheep named Toasty. I was going to go to a slaughterhouse, but I escaped! But now I walk around places with lots of people so then I have a chance of getting food. So if you see me around, some grain would be nice!