“Come now or come never!” it says on the back of the invitation to the Gee Museum. The invitation lands on Ben’s doorstep along with the milk and, although the envelope is blank, Ben is confident it’s meant for him.  He wants to visit but his Mum is strangely reluctant to let him.

The bees who went to great lengths to deliver the invitation wonder what is delaying him and one highly-strung shrew is stretched to snapping point when Ben finally stumbles in. By this time Ben knows two things: he has been here before and at least one person hopes that there will soon be no museum left to visit.  Has he left it too late?

The utterly frustrating truth is I can’t tell you! Sabina at David Fickling Books has tantalised me by sending the opening few chapters.  I’m completely hooked now and the book isn’t being published until November.  This seems like cruel and unnecessary treatment!

So look out (but don’t hold your breath!) for The Hippo at the End of the Hall by Helen Cooper.  Yes, that Helen Cooper, double Kate Greenaway Medallist for Pumpkin Soup and The baby Who Wouldn’t Go to Bed.  This is her first novel but fortunately for us she has also provided illustrations for it.  If the rest of it lives up to what I’ve read it will quickly become a critical and popular success.  And maybe even a Carnegie Medal winner…

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