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Imprint: Rock the Boat

Subject: Children’s Fiction

Age: 9-12

A Good Day for Climbing Trees

Jaco Jacobs

*Nominated for the 2019 CILIP Carnegie Medal*

*Spectator Best Books of the Year selection*

Two unlikely heroes inspire a whole town by fighting to save a tree

Sometimes, in the blink of an eye, you do something that changes your life forever.

Like climbing a tree with a girl you don’t know.

Marnus is tired of feeling invisible, living in the shadow of his two brothers.

His older brother is good at breaking swimming records and girls’ hearts. His younger brother is already a crafty entrepreneur who has tricked him into doing the dishes all summer.

But when a girl called Leila turns up on their doorstep one morning with a petition, it’s the start of an unexpected adventure.

And finally, Marnus gets the chance to be noticed…

  • Publication date: April 12, 2018
  • ISBN: 9781786073174
  • RRP: £6.99
  • Pages: 160
  • Publication date: April 12, 2018
  • ISBN: 9781786073181
  • RRP: £3.99
  • Pages: 160


‘An inspiring story, and a really funny one too.’

Spectator (Books of the Year)

‘The book deftly handles issues around family life, as well as activism, with a light-hearted touch. With lots of humour and a cast of weird but wonderful characters, and Jim Tierney’s modish illustrations, this is the perfect feel-good book from one of South Africa’s top children’s authors.’


'Quirky, charming and very funny, but with a real emotional punch. It is the perfect place to start for someone looking to move on from The Wimpy Kid books.'

Anthony McGowan, author of The Donut Diaries

‘Instantly engaging, funny and robust.'

Amanda Craig, New Statesman

‘Jacobs authentically sketches the main characters’ deeper motivations — especially Leila’s reaction to her parents’ divorce. Ultimately, Jacobs delivers a kind and uplifting novel about two characters taking a stand.’

Publishers Weekly

'It made me chuckle on the very first page. A story with a warm heart and characters you want to spend time with.'

Jill Coleman - BookTrust Director of Children's Books

‘A small gem with interesting characters touching on issues such as divorce, friendship and the outsiders in our society.’

Die Burger

‘Jaco Jacobs undoubtedly has the gift of writing entertaining stories. His characters are believable, and ever so often there’s a hint of humour to make the reading experience even more pleasurable.’


‘Jaco Jacobs is a natural story spinner.'


Jaco Jacobs

Jaco Jacobs is the most popular and prolific children’s book author in Afrikaans. He has published more than 120 books and nearly a million copies of his books have been sold. Jaco is also a well-known columnist, blogger, freelance journalist and translator. He lives in Bloemfontein, South Africa

Author page

More books by Jaco Jacobs

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