Mr and Mrs Bold are just like you and me: they live in a nice house (in Teddington), they have jobs (like writing Christmas cracker jokes) and they love to have a bit of a giggle. One slight difference: they're hyenas. Yes, that's right - they're covered in fur, have tails tucked into their trousers, and they really, really like to laugh.

So far, the Bolds have managed to keep things under wraps, even when their children Bobby and Betty were born. But the nosy man next door smells a rat (or a hyena), and a trip to the local wildlife park, and the brilliantly wacky heist that results, could be the end of Teddington's best-kept secret. Whatever will the neighbours think?


Julian Clary is a comedian, entertainer and novelist, who has toured across the world with his one-man shows. He became a household name in the late 1980s, and remains one of the country’s most popular (and least predictable) entertainers. Julian has appeared on numerous popular TV shows including Celebrity Big Brother (which he won), Strictly Come Dancing, This Morning, QI, Have I Got News For You and is a regular panellist on BBC Radio 4’s Just a Minute. He has starred in West End productions of Taboo and Cabaret, and appears in panto most years – he loves wearing silly clothes and lots of make up! Julian also narrates the Little Princess children’s television series. He lives in Kent with his partner, dogs and several chickens.

David Roberts is an award-winning illustrator who has earned great acclaim for his distinctive style. He was born in Liverpool and studied fashion design at university in Manchester. After graduating, he worked as a milliner and a fashion illustrator, but always felt his true calling was in children’s books. David finally realised his dream when his first book was published in 1998, and since then he has collaborated with some of Britain’s finest children’s authors, including Julia Donaldson, Sally Gardner, Philip Ardagh and Jacqueline Wilson. He is also the creator of the popular Dirty Bertie books. He lives in London with his partner.


The book’s hilarious plot and abundant illustrations make it a top choice for reluctant readers. Wildly original and very funny

Kirkus, starred review

Although Clary plays up the humour the underlying warm message is of tolerance towards those who are supposedly different from the norm. Glorious black-and-white illustrations add to the mayhem.

Daily Mail


Telegraph, Best Holiday Reading for Kids

Funny and clever with a good dose of yucky humour. Children will appreciate the wry digs at the nonsense of modern living and Roberts’ illustrations are an absolute delight.

The Bookseller, Fiona Noble

Roberts’ manically expressive black and white illustrations capitalize on the unapologetically silly premise… Clary mixes animal fact with imaginative, entertaining fiction.

Publishers Weekly

We loved the silliness and laughter that runs throughout, and the illustrations are brilliant. Heaps of fun.


My two children and I all love The Bolds. An allegory for feeling like an outsider and is written in the most imaginative and sensitive way.

Mail on Sunday

The animals are amongst us! This lovely book will have kids rolling on the floor with mirth while their parents roll their eyes in recognition of human folly.

Fay Weldon

Underscoring the slapstick appeal is a message about understanding others’ differences… Fans of Roald Dahl will find much to appreciate here.

School Library Journal

This entertaining tale will make readers chortle. A good choice for reluctant readers and fans of Captain Underpants.


A real treat… David Roberts’ illustrations are a joy to behold and perfectly catch the stylishly dressed Bolds’ blithe carefree happiness.


Perfection in a book! Please write lots more books Mr Clary

Hermione Chaytons, age 6, for

A very very hilarious book and I kept reading funny sections out to my family!

Georgia Dowra, age 10, for

I loved this book… and because it was so good I read it in one day

Stephanie Chaplin, age 9, for

An absolute gem… this entertaining book combines an enjoyable story with fabulous illustrations in a perfect package for young readers. 5 Stars.

The Bookbag

The jokes are many, and very good indeed… The Bolds also does a great deal, in a gentle and understated way, to promote the benefits of kindness and tolerance, as well as the importance of being true to yourself.

Books for Keeps

Enjoyably silly


A funny story with a ludicrous but hugely enjoyable plotline, lots of jokes, some nail-biting moments and wonderful characters… A very special book with illustrations that are a joy to behold.

Absolutely Education

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