Mum has just got a new job as a firelighter in some unheated volcanoes nearby. It doesn't matter to Dad, who's at work all day anyway. And it doesn't matter to Puffing Billy, who just blows smoke rings and backfires all day. But it does matter to Crossfire - a lot. Who will sing his puff-a-bye at bedtime? When their new nanny, Smokescreen, arrives and doesn't do anything like Mummy used to do, Crossfire is quizzical and upset. Gradually, though, as the rapport between the nanny and Crossfire grows, he realizes that being with Smokescreen instead of Mum is lots of fun in a different way.
Charlotte Hudson is the author of MONKEY WORDS and IN A LITTLE WHILE. After taking her degree in Geography and Anthropology, Charlotte Hudson went to Africa to travel and explore. She spent three years teaching in Zambia and then came back to England to take a PGCE. She taught primary school, first in Suffolk and then in London for four years before becoming a full-time writer. She has just had her first child. Mary McQuillan is the talented young illustrator of OUR TWITCHY and WHO'S POORLY TOO? by Kes Gray, winner of the 2001 Sheffield Picture Book Award, SQUEAKY CLEAN by Simon Puttock. She has previously collaborated with Charlotte Hudson on IN A LITTLE WHILE (2005). Her illustrations have also appeared in poetry collections, anthologies, on greetings cards and wallpaper designs. She lives and works in Somerset.