The Trouble with Goats and Sheep by Joanna Cannon

IMG_0991A charming and entertaining debut from author Joanna Cannon, The Trouble with Goats and Sheep tells the story of a neighbourhood full of secrets.  During a summer heatwave in 1976, Mrs. Creasy goes missing without a trace, leading little Grace and Tilly to embark on an investigation to solve the mystery.  The disappearance brings up long hidden secrets that many people do not want revealed.

‘He said that Mrs Creasy is officially a Missing Person.’
‘Missing from what?’
Thinking made my feet slower. ‘Her life, I suppose.’
‘How can you be missing from your own life?’
I slowed a little more. ‘Missing from the life you belong in.’
Tilly stopped to pull up her socks. ‘I wonder how you know which one that is.’

The Trouble with Goats and Sheep is beautifully written, funny, and charming.  Grace and Tilly (sweet, little Tilly) are adorable characters and their investigation of Mrs. Creasy’s disappearance is the thread that takes us though the story and introduces us to the different characters present in the neighbourhood.  It is part whodunnit, part coming-of-age, and part exploration of the secrets we keep and neighbourhood politics.  Every character has a story and a background, which the author does a wonderful job of presenting and integrating into the overall narrative.  It is light, heart-warming and an absolute delight.

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