#Review Punch by Barbara Henderson @scattyscribbler @cranachanbooks

All right! A review has just made me cry, in the best possible way!

The Quiet Knitter

Punch cover inc. quotes

** My thanks to Barbara Henderson for my copy of Punch and for inviting me to be part of her blog tour **


Wrong place. Wrong time. A boy on the run.

Smoke belches out through the market entrance.

And me?

I turn and run.

Inverness 1889.

When 12-year-old Phin is accused of a terrible crime, his only option is to flee. In the unlikely company of an escaped prisoner and a group of travelling entertainers, he enters a new world of Punch and Judy shows and dancing bears.

But will Phin clear his name?

And what can he do when memories of a darker, more terrible crime begin to haunt him?

My Thoughts & Review:

Once in a while, an author comes along that possesses the rare gift of being a true storyteller.  A storyteller who can weave…

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Guest Blog: Scottish Settings by Barbara Henderson

Thanks to the fab Paisley Piranhas for featuring on the blog tour today!


Barbara 1A huge welcome to Barbara Henderson, whose book Punchwe reviewed yesterday (and loved). Today she is doing a guest blog, and has a …

… wee challenge for you:

Name 10 children’s books set in Victorian times. Come on! Oliver Twist, Black Beauty… Yes, Treasure Island can count, I guess. Terry Pratchett’s Dodger, Berlie Doherty’s Street Child… and also the more recent steampunk incarnations like Cogheart and Moonlocket… Then there is Hetty Feather… hey, nearly forgot about Gaslight!

Any more?


My question is: Where is Scotland?

Where IS Scotland in all of this? The vast majority of titles about the Victorian age are set in London, or near London.  I know; Gaslight is set in Cardiff – a welcome change! But no Scotland. Wait, you could mention Janis Mackay’s The Reluctant Time Traveller series which features some Victorian flashbacks.

I don’t…

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Review: ‘Punch’ by Barbara Henderson

Thank you! What a lovely, lovely review!


A book about fun, friendship, loyalty and redemption.

piranha stars blue 5

This is a completely delightful MG/YA book featuring 13-year-old Phineas, who is forced to escape a miserable existence as a butcher’s boy in late-Victorian Inverness, and go on the run. Phin meets many people, some lovely, some less so, and the reader is carried along in his adventures. This is a story that goes with such a gusto you really don’t want to put the book down – or want it to end.

Punch cover inc. quotesI loved everything about this book – the engaging characters, not only Phin himself but the travelling entertainers he falls in with; the delightful background of what it is like to run an old-fashioned Punch and Judy show; the setting of Victorian Scotland. The story has great pace, with the tension nicely maintained. The reader is rooting for Phin and his friend Mr Robertson, willing them to escape ‘justice’…

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Why A Book Launch Matters: A Guest Post by Barbara Henderson, Author of Punch

Publication Day!!! Thanks to Linda’s Book Bag for hosting. Why bother with book launches? My thoughts on that are here. You might even get to see what I’m wearing for mine!

Linda's Book Bag


I am absolutely delighted to welcome back Barbara Henderson, author of Punch to Linda’s Book Bag. Barbara is a wonderful person and a fantastic writer. You can find out what I thought of her novel Fir For Luckhere. Fir For Luck was one of my books of the year in 2016 and I was thrilled when Barbara shared her previous publication day experience with me here.

Punch is published today, 23rd October 2017, by Pokey Hat, the children’s book imprint of Cranachan and is available for purchase here.



Wrong place. Wrong time. A boy on the run.

Smoke belches out through the market entrance.

And me?

I turn and run.

Inverness 1889.

When 12-year-old Phin is accused of a terrible crime, his only option is to flee. In the unlikely company of an escaped…

View original post 1,017 more words

Guest post: The Royal Cameo in ‘PUNCH’ by author Barbara Henderson.

Stop 3 on the blog tour. Who can resist a Royal cameo? Not me! Thanks to Pippa Wilson for hosting!

@hellopipski's blog


Welcome to Barbara Henderson!

Last year I was completely staggered by the power of Barbara’s storytelling in her Middle Grade book Fir for Luck, which tells the story of 12 year old Janet in a village during the Highland Clearances. You can read more about that here, and I would really urge you to get your hands on a copy!

So I have been eagerly awaiting Barbara’s latest book, Punch, which is set in Victorian Scotland. The protagonist is twelve year old Phineas who finds himself in the wrong place at the wrong time. Once again Barbara skilfully takes us back in time, this time to 1889 Inverness, and tells us Phineas’ story in a thoroughly  compelling style. It’s a real page-turner! Look out for a full review coming soon.

Barbara has joined us today to tell us about a rather familiar face who turns up…

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Author Live Events #guestpost from Barbara Henderson #Punch @scattyscribbler

A double whammy! After the review, now the guest post on Portobello Book Blog!

Portobello Book Blog

Punch by [Henderson, Barbara]

I have reviewed Punch by Barbara Henderson for the blogtour in another post today but she has also written a guest post about authors taking part in live events. It is so interesting that I felt it deserved its own separate post. As I am hoping to see her at Waterstones in Princes Street, Edinburgh on 4th November, I was particularly keen to hear about what kind of ideas she has for promoting Punch.

The Author as a performer…

Islay schools

That’s a tricky concept, isn’t it? Most authors I know love writing. They love losing themselves in the alternate universe of their imaginations, hidden away and solitary. But nowadays there is just a little hitch!

That sort of thing doesn’t sell books. It really, really doesn’t.

A writer I really respect once told me: ‘As a writer, your biggest enemy is obscurity.’

I reflected on this: Beat obscurity and you’ve won…

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