Oscar's Lion

Oscar's Lion

By Author / Illustrator

Adam Baron, Benji Davies


Mental Health & Wellbeing

Age range(s)



HarperCollins Publishers








A magical coming-of-age story about a boy spending his first weekend without his parents . . . and the lion who comes to babysit him. Get ready to fall in love with this instant classic.  'Beautiful, adventurous, powerful' Phil Earle

Oscar is a little terrified to find that a lion is going to be looking after him for the weekend. But when the lion lets him eat as many biscuits as he wants, and reads him his favourite story ten times, Oscar realises he might be on to something good.  Soon, Oscar discovers that the lion can change into different animals and the pair find themselves having all kinds of adventures! But before the lion has to go, might he have one more amazing transformation up his sleeve?

Oscar's Lion is an astonishing and deeply personal book from one of our greatest storytellers.



Oscar's Lion is a moving, magical story about a boy who spends the weekend being looked after by a kind and enormous lion. The lion says 'yes' when his parents would have normally said 'no', and so, even although his life has been turned upside down, Oscar accepts his new babysitter and embraces the adventures they have together.

It doesn't take long for Oscar to find out the lion can shape-shift into a range of different creatures and together they navigate extraordinary journeys from the local park to flying in a WW2 plane, from the school football field to a Napoleonic sea battle! And woven so elegantly throughout is the exploration of big emotions; loss, grief and love. The illustrations are few but beautiful and bring the story to life.

This book feels warm to read and would be great for upper primary school children. It would fit in nicely with a Health and Wellbeing unit with a focus on emotional literacy, resilience and dealing with change. A skilled teacher could pause at key points in this book and choose how deeply to investigate the feelings that are alluded to, linking it to real life experiences children go through.

192 pages / Reviewed by Jemma Jeffrey, teacher

Suggested Reading Age 9+


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