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Moth Boy

A baby in a bag, a boy in a wig... missing

Heart-warming and vivid, Moth Boy is a compelling adventure story for 7 to 107 year-olds.

Ten years ago, Ches was left on a Cheltenham doorstep in a plastic bag, with a letter from his birth mother. The letter is his to read tomorrow, on his birthday.

Angry and scared Ches runs away from his adoptive family and finds refuge for the night in a garden shed.

Ches is led astray on an unforgettable birthday trip to a wild peninsula. Has he found a new friend or is he in danger?

Both main characters in Moth Boy are seeking answers to universal questions – am I loved? Am I lovable? A life and death moment nudges them towards discovering some answers for themselves.



‘I loved Moth Boy, a tale of two 10 year old boys who, through a tense friendship over 24 hours, find themselves coming to terms with their mixed feelings about family and abandonment. The author sensitively tells the story with the anxious, and sometimes humorous, voice of Ches, a child left at birth on a doorstep by his mother. Wonderful story-telling that builds chapter by chapter to an ending that will make you cry.’ Neil


‘Read this in 2 sittings (my 13 year old daughter read it in one). It’s a fast paced adventure full of humour and pathos, fear and joy. It just carries you along, a bit like Ches, wondering how (or if) it’s all going to work out. Some delightful moments involving bikes and wigs. But also real, believable characters whose struggles and stories all weave into Ches’. Highly recommended.’ Linny


Published by The Book Guild

What readers say...

‘I had to keep reading it until I’d finished. The trip to Weston super Mare was an exciting adventure.’

-Innes (aged 11)

‘This story is beautiful. I believed and was carried by it into Ches’s life. Exciting, vivid descriptions of places, people and experiences. The story held me as I empathised with Ches’s need to believe his mother loved him. I was glad, so happy for him. It wasn’t sugar-coated or patronising.’

-Terry White (reader)

‘I love how real the characters are. I really like Inga and how the moth boy aspect doesn’t appear until the last page.’

-Anya (aged 14)

‘There is so much to admire in Moth Boy, especially issues of adoption and identity, which will resound for many readers.’

-Jamila Gavin (author of Coram Boy)

‘Wonderful story-telling that builds chapter by chapter to an ending that will make you cry.’

-Neil Buick (Goodreads reviewer)

‘If you’ve got a pre-teen or young teen who enjoys reading, or one that you’d like to enjoy reading more, then buy them this book, and then buy one for yourself.’

-Jeremy Green  (Goodreads reviewer)

‘Clare tells a fast paced and exciting story encompassing adventure and danger. Concise and hard to put down.’

-Nigel and Helen Pitel (Book Guild guest reviewers)