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Barney is a solitary eight-year old, given to wandering off by himself. One day he is lying on the edge of a disused chalk-pit when he tumbles over, lands in a sort of cave, and meets "somebody with a lot of shaggy hair and two bright black eyes" - wearing a rabbit-skin and speaking in grunts. He names him Stig, they learn to understand one another, and togther they raid the rubbish dump at the bottom of the pit, improve Stig's cave dwelling, and enjoy a series of adventures that are sometimes extremely practical: one day they discover how to make a chimney with a batch of old tin cans, another they rescue the family silver from burglars, and on another they capture an escaped leopard. It is this combination of fact and fancy that his chalk-pit is inhabited by a cave man; and Stig's lack of inquisitiveness about Barney's everyday life which make this such a very endearing book.

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  • Reading Age: 9+
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