The Emperor's Grucklehound

It's the Emperor's birthday but Sam

and Scruff don't know or care. The two  puppies want  a bite to eat and a good home. This is the story of how they find what they're looking for.

  And lose it.

  And find it again, with a bit of help from Fred (an assistant gardener's assistant), Carl (a footman), Anna and her father (Scruff's rescuers), and, of course, the Emperor himself . . .

"Kathryn Cave has written a perfect little fable ... "

School Librarian, August 1996

Once upon a time there were two puppies...

  "Gruckle hounds? Gruckle hounds?" frowned Lord Hawk.

  "They're from Austria, my lord," said Fred.

" A charming and funny story" 

100 Best Books, 1997

Emperors Gruckle Hound cover image - Kathryn Cave author

   "You know what, Hawk" said the Emperor, "I'll keep it! The last of the gruckle hounds... It can be my mascot. I can't wait to see what it's like when it grows up."

   Fred's stomach turned a double somersault and sank into his boots.

   "Don't gape, boy" said Lord Hawk sharply. "Remove the gruckle hound. It must go to the imperial kennels for training tomorrow! The Emperor has spoken!"

About the author

I like dogs and as a child I had a puppy I loved very much. So this story was great fun to write. Fred's inspired lie about the gruckle hound changes both puppies' lives, and his own life and the Emperor's too. We spin our stories and then they run away with us, always. I  like

it when that happens.

About writing The Emperor's Gruckle Hound

By Kathryn Cave

Illustrated by Chris Riddell

Picture books by Kathryn Cave

and Chris Riddell:

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illustrated by Chris Riddell:

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I write for all ages and I live in Hampstead, north London.


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