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  • Published: 28 September 2021
  • ISBN: 9780143775836
  • Imprint: Puffin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 272
  • RRP: $22.00

Mallory, Mallory: Trick or Treat

It's Halloween and Mallory has a trick up her sleeve!

Scheming Mallory and her reluctant sidekick Arthur have a Halloween misadventure involving nasty tricks, time travel and a sneaky cat.

Mallory wants candy, as much as she can grab, and she’s prepared to play some tricks (and kick a pesky black cat) to get it. But when she and her reluctant sidekick Arthur tangle with the owner of a spooky old house, the trick is on them. In the beat of a bat’s wing, they’re a century back in time with a mission to find that slippery cat, or Mallory will change shape forever . . .

From the magical pen of James Norcliffe, and with fantastical illustrations by Emily Walker, Mallory, Mallory: Trick or Treat is a spooky tale of time travel and intrigue, and people getting their (un)just desserts.

Don't miss Mallory and Arthur's first hilarious misadventure Mallory, Mallory: The Revenge of the Tooth Fairy!

  • Published: 28 September 2021
  • ISBN: 9780143775836
  • Imprint: Puffin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 272
  • RRP: $22.00

About the authors

James Norcliffe

James Norcliffe is an award-winning poet, educator, editor and author of books for adults and children.

In December 2022 he was awarded the Prime Minister's Award for Literary Achievement in Poetry, which he told writer Paula Morris was 'the ultimate validation' of his writing career.

He was the 2018 Creative New Zealand Randell Cottage Writing Fellow, the 2012 University of Otago College of Education Writer in Residence, the 2006 Fellow at Iowa University and the 2000 Robert Burns Fellow at Otago University.

In 2003, Norcliffe, with Bernadette Hall, received the inaugural Christchurch Press Literary Liaisons Honour Award for ‘lasting contribution to literature in the South Island’. Norcliffe has taught English in Christchurch, China and Brunei. He won the Lilian Ida Smith Award in 1990, and the New Zealand Poetry Society’s international competition in 1992.

His children’s fantasy novel The Assassin of Gleam won the Sir Julius Vogel Award for the best New Zealand fantasy novel of 2006, and was shortlisted for the 2007 LIANZA Esther Glen Medal. In the Christchurch Press, Trevor Agnew wrote that Norcliffe had avoided producing what could have been ‘just another cardboard fantasy cliché’ and had ‘breathed life into his characters and situations. The result is a skilfully told story, with a dark mood and a sense of urgency. It is clear that a master storyteller is at work from the first sentence...’ In New Zealand Books, Heather Murray identified Norcliffe’s ‘experience as historian and poet to create a logical, believable and exciting story out of an alienating and threatening world’. She concluded: ‘Though Norcliffe creates frightening worlds, [he] grounds his story and characters in acceptable reality through using known language’.

The Loblolly Boy, published in 2009 in New Zealand, Australia and the United States, was described by acclaimed children’s writer Margaret Mahy as ‘a rich fantasy — alive with original twists surprises and mysteries’. It won the 2010 NZ Post Junior Fiction Award, was shortlisted for the LIANZA Esther Glen Medal for Junior Fiction and the Sir Julius Vogel Science Fiction Award, and won a Storylines Notable Junior Fiction Book Award.

In Science Fiction World, Gerard Woods wrote of The Loblolly Boy that Norcliffe ‘has written that rare children’s book, as much a joy for adults to read as for children’. USA’s Booklist described The Loblolly Boy as ‘an imaginative and richly atmospheric fantasy with sympathetic characters...a haunting story that will capture most readers’ imaginations’. ‘The Loblolly Boy by James Norcliffe is an entrancing, exciting, unexpected read...it has a wondrous, magical fairy-tale ambience...I never quite knew where it was going or how it would be resolved,’ wrote George Ivanoff in Australian Speculative Fiction in Focus (ASFF). Fran Knight, writing in Read Plus, highly recommended The Loblolly Boy as an ‘intriguing, engrossing and wholly satisfying...highly original fantasy story’, while in the same publication Peter Pledger declared it ‘A unique and original fantasy, complete with adventure, magic and appealing characters, this is a tale that was hard to put down.’

A sequel, The Loblolly Boy & the Sorcerer, released in 2011 and was a finalist in the Junior Fiction category of the 2012 New Zealand Post Book Awards for Children and Young Adults. The Enchanted Flute, described in the Otago Daily Times as a ‘Part Grimm’s fairy tale, part classical mythology, part outdoor adventure…inspired, in part, by a piece of classical music’ followed, and was a finalist in the 2013 Sir Julius Vogel Awards.

Norcliffe’s 2013 novel Felix and the Red Rats is a riveting adventure which sees the margins between fiction and reality, and the past and the present, dangerously blur. Dave Pope, in Hawkes Bay Today, noted that ‘like all good stories this one has a plot within a plot within a plot. It keeps the reader wanting more, as minor characters are drawn into this dark tale.’ It won a Storylines Notable Junior Fiction Award in 2014.

The Pirates and the Nightmaker, a continuation of the loblolly boy’s adventures, was published in 2015. It won a Storylines Notable Junior Fiction Award and was a finalist in the junior fiction category of the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults in 2016.

In a review in The Sapling, Sarah Forster described Norcliffe’s 2017 novel Twice Upon a Time as ‘traditional quest storytelling at its best, from a master of the form’ and declared that ‘James Norcliffe is a national treasure.’

A humorous fantasy adventure, Mallory, Mallory: The Revenge of the Tooth Fairy, was published in 2020 with illustrations by Emily Walker, described by Paula Green on Poetry Box as 'an utter delight' and received a Storylines Notable Junior Fiction Award in 2021. Its sequel Mallory, Mallory: Trick or Treat released in October 2021.

He lives in Church Bay with his wife, Joan Melvyn.

Emily Walker

Emily Walker has always loved drawing and painting, and just about every form of artistic expression. This led her into work as a hair stylist and creating special-effect makeup, face painting and bodypainting. But when she had children, she fell in love all over again with picture books and turned her talents to illustration, inspired by the idea of being able to transport readers into a limitless imagined world with characters that could touch the heart. Since that time she has twice been shortlisted for the Storylines Gavin Bishop Award for Illustration (2017 and 2019) and in 2019 she was also a finalist in the Margaret Mahy Illustration Award.

Her first book commission, creating illustrations for Mallory, Mallory: The Revenge of the Tooth Fairy by novelist James Norcliffe, saw her winning a Storylines Notable Junior Fiction Award in 2021, and its sequel Mallory, Mallory: Trick or Treat released in October 2021.

Emily has also produced illustrations for a picture book, Daddy Monster ABC by Diana Neild (One Tree Press, 2020).

Praise for Mallory, Mallory: Trick or Treat

We met the outrageous Mallory in The Revenge of the Tooth Fairy and her antics are sniggeringly funny. If she would only listen to the sensible (but browbeaten) Arthur, she might just avoid getting into so much strife. Walker’s fun illustrations add to the anarchic humour of this wonderful eerie tale for ages 9+. A great class read-aloud too.

Wellington Children's Bookshop

Part time-slip, part quest and a little creepy, Mallory, Mallory – Trick or Treat is perfect for Halloween.


This novel, the second in the Mallory, Mallory series, sees the return in full awfulness of Mallory, the young lady who is officially described as ‘self-centred, greedy, untrustworthy and utterly mercenary and awful.’ She is also not nice, which is deplorable but makes for amusing reading. Mallory has no friends to go trick-or-treating with at Halloween but as usual bullies her hapless minion, Arthur from next door...The result is an entertaining and gently humorous time travel story.

Trevor Agnew, The Source

If you read Book One of this series then this second one is better. Get in there and read it ... you won’t regret it.

Bob Docherty, Bob's Book Blog

The story skips along, is well written and fun to read. The illustrations are quirky and a good fit for the tone of the book, breaking the text up nicely. There is some great word play and subtle humour, especially based around the misunderstandings both culturally and socially, that happen between the two groups of children from two very different eras. We learn a little bit about living at the turn of the last century – there is some lovely detail lightly delivered.

Melinda Szymanik, Kids Books NZ

This is James Norcliffe’s second book with the irrepressible Mallory and he has developed two interesting characters that are total opposites in nature. Readers who are budding detectives will enjoy picking up the subtle clues within the story and racing to solve the mystery before the brash Mallory can. There is a lot of dialogue in the text resulting in short sentences for early chapter readers and the vocabulary is typical everyday language. Emily Walker's dramatic illustrations enhance the text exquisitely.Young readers are sure to enjoy this fanciful and hilarious, time travelling story...Recommended.

Elaine Wills, Library Manager, Enner Glynn School Nelson, The School Library