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Suitable for 7 - 9 years

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Product description

Morpurgo perfection. A donkey as fast as a racehorse? Only a magical garden gnome can make this wish come true… In Dublin, where horses run wild in the fields near the tower blocks, Jackie dreams of owning her own horse – the fastest in the world. But all she has is Gran’s old donkey, Barnaby. He’s not only slow, he’s as stubborn as a mule. Yet Jackie wishes Barnaby could run like a racehorse. And then a magical garden gnome, Mr Skip, grants her wish. Could Barnaby – ‘the Superdonk’ – really win the Irish Derby?

  • Magical younger fiction by a master storyteller
  • An uplifting tale of hope and dreams coming true
  • Accessible illustrated text that builds confidence
  • Written by the celebrated author of War Horse

Product Details







Date published

June 7th, 2012

Lexile measure

790L Lexiles are the global standard in reading assessment. They are unique as they are able to measure a child and a book on the same scale – ensuring the right book gets to the right child at the right time.

For more details see What is a lexile?.

Accelerated Reader

AR book level: 4.8; Middle years; 2.0 points

Other details
  • 112 pages



Michael Morpurgo

Photo of Michael Morpurgo


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What kids think

  1. MistyMoon02
    on 26 July 2015

    Michael Morpurgo is one of my favourite animal writers. He really goes into depth with the topic and I’m excited to read Singing for Mrs Pettigrew, which includes the meaning behind some of his stories!

  2. sheda05
    on 29 May 2014

    This book is the best book ever in the world

        by Alicia sheds Boyle
  3. FLOWER01
    on 15 July 2013

    this book is AMAZING and i absolutly Love It!!!!!!!!!!! It has homor and comedy in it and I could read it over and over and over again! I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    5out of 5
  4. jdw876
    on 26 May 2013

    this book was great I love it I just want to read it one thousand times I rat it five stars

    5out of 5
  5. horridhenry2122
    on 8 August 2012

    Mr Skip

    “I’ll put you together again. And Mum and me, we’ll look after you, alright?”

    In Dublin, where horses run wild in the fields near the tower blocks, Jackie dreams of owning her own horse – the fastest in the world. But all she has is Gran’s old donkey Barnaby, who is a stubborn as a mule. Until, rummaging in a skip, Jackie finds a broken garden gnome who turns out to be magical! When she lovingly restores him back to his former glory, Mr Skip promises to make her dreams come true. Jackie’s great wish is for her donkey to run like a racehorse. And when Barnaby starts winning races, fame and fortune come their way. There are TV appearances, a film deal and a promised million ‘smackaroos’. But will Barnaby, the Superdonk, win the Irish Derby? Can Mr Skip work his magic till the very end? New Parent’s info RRP £4.99 Club price £1.99 Saving £3.00 Buy this book Bookmarking I want to read this I am reading this I have read this Tell us what you think