The Pinchers and the Diamond Heist

The Pinchers and the Diamond Heist

By Author / Illustrator

Anders Sparring, Per Gustavsson, Julia Marshall



Age range(s)



Gecko Press




Paperback / softback




Theo is good at most things. He can almost count to a thousand, knows several French words and can operate the washing machine. But he can't lie or steal.  "You must try harder," says his mother sternly.

The Pincher family love to steal things. It's what they are born for! When his parents leave to visit the diamond exhibition, Theo's heart sinks. After breaking Grandma out of prison (his little sister needs someone to read her bedtime story), Theo sees no alternative but to stop his parents stealing the diamond. But how can he make this happen?

A mix of adventure, silliness and everyday family life, and with bright and funny illustrations, this is a perfect chapter book for beginning and reluctant readers.



The Pinchers and the Diamond Heist focuses on the Pinchers, a family of criminals, and particularly on Theo, who is good at lots of things except lying and stealing - which is not good if you are a member of a criminal family!

Each chapter is filled with bright and detailed illustrations which bring the text to life. The chapters are between five and six pages long, which will keep even the most reluctant reader engaged. The beginning of the book has a page devoted to each Pincher family member which the reader can return to - this is handy for those children who are just starting on their larger chapter books as it's a reference point for them to return to.

There are numerous themes running throughout the book, such as friendship and family, and the most important - which could be used as a class talking point - is honesty. There are many opportunities to discuss the importance of honesty and how it impacts Theo's decisions.

This book is the first in a series and it is sure to keep everyone entertained with its silly humour and madcap adventures. The Pinchers would be perfect for a shared read in LKS2 upwards.

112 pages / Reviewed by Emma Nelson, teacher

Suggested Reading Age 7+


The Pinchers are a family of robbers. All of them steal things and lie, except for Theo, who secretly wants to be a policeman. Their next-door neighbour Paul is an actual policeman. One night Theo's parents go to a diamond exhibition and Theo is left to look after his little sister. In need of adult support, the children go to visit their grandmother at the local jail. After that, you can imagine what ensues (hint- the title of the book is a big clue).

With nods to Burglar Bill by the Ahlbergs, The Pinchers and the Diamond Heist features similarly-clad robbers and crazy and predictable themes. The reader knows that robbery is the motive, and it is only whether they will be successful that is in doubt. Theo is the 'good' boy and his actions will alter what happens in the story.

The pictures by Per Gustavsson are entertaining and bring the story to life and it is very nice to have coloured illustrations in the book. The end of the book is full of 'criminal' activities such as 'find your criminal name' (I'm Jules Snatch - of course I had to find out!) and it makes the book an entertaining read.

The story is a very short and easy read which will be attractive for children who have just mastered the art of reading but want a 'chapter book'.

112 pages / Reviewed by Jacqueline Harris, teacher

Suggested Reading Age 5+


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