Everyone has a Lifetime Deed Counter (LDC). It works like this:
You offer to help with the housework: Lifetime Good Deeds +1 You steal your little brother's sweets: Lifetime Bad Deeds +1
Looks straightforward, huh? But what if your every thought was disputed by opposing forces of good and evil - by an angel wearing ray bans (called Windleberry) and a demon in the form of a wart (called Muddlespot)? And within your mind they were fighting a fierce battle over your actions, a battle dictated by a game of poker?
When Muddlespot is promoted from a devil's janitor to special agent, the pressure is on for him to infiltrate Sally Jones and make her Bad. If he doesn't, it will be Very Bad for him. But as his mission leads him down Sally's ear and into the deepest recesses of her mind, all becomes unclear. Just what does it mean to be good? And can it be good to be bad?
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Hear the name John Dickinson, and you expect something intriguing and original. And with this fascinating book for younger readers, you won't be disappointed. ...Stories don't have to be quick and easy to be enjoyable, and there's nothing wrong with expecting your readers to reach high. This book is touching and funny and provocative, and we promise you — it will be well worth any effort you put into reading it. - The Bookbag
This is one of those books that takes figurative meaning literally. And you end up with a whole lot of light-hearted silly good fun. But parallel to this, Muddle and Win also explores concepts of good, evil, truth, and ideas (just some of life’s itsy-bitsy philosophical questions). At times, I thought the storyline was aimed at 10 years or younger, but the language structure (and maybe some of the ideas) is aimed at an older reader. There are bits for everyone in there. - WeSatDown blogspot
Muddle & Win is bonkers, but in a good way! I was hurled into this fabulously imagined world that was brilliantly fun, silly, witty and wonderfully written and put together. I immediately fell in love with brave little Muddlespot... The storyline is engaging and is perfectly paced, it is one of them one-sitting books that I love so much. I really haven't come across anything like Muddle & Win before and I think everyone should read it themselves to experience the full on punch of silliness it packs into every page. - Fiction Fascination blogspot
It's a brilliant, funny story about good and bad which is so well written that even slower, less capable readers will probably get through it in a day or two. I really enjoyed the story and think that so many pre-teens will too, its a great, fun read with a brilliant serious message underneath it all. - ReadaRaptor blogspot
It’s funny, and it’s scary, and it’s very, very sharp in its observations of human nature. ...It's a huge relief to come across such an intelligent, thought-provoking book for children. - Steel Thistles blogspot
Give it to good readers of ten and up. And read it yourself. It's fast-moving, vivid and funny, there’s not a dull line in it, and I adored it. I think you will too. - Steel Thistles blogspot
I absolutely loved reading Muddle and Win. It took me right back to the books I read during my childhood. Back when children’s books were imaginative, clever and fun, and I’d devour a whole book in one go. - 'Notes of Life' website
Muddle and Win is a must for young readers (and maybe some of us older ones too!). It teaches a few lessons along the way but is still witty, silly, light-hearted, touching, intriguing and exciting. An excellent read for pre-teens and teens! - 'Notes of Life' website
I've never read a book like this before ... The author really knows how to turn a dark, deadly battle into something light-hearted and fun. - Booked Up Bloggers
A fun, delightful and wacky story that’s very fast paced and full of vivid images. Dickinson has a wonderful imagination and the way he described the brain of Sally Jones and more importantly, the battle between good and evil, felt very unique. I raced through this funny and adventurous short book. - FlutteringButterflies.com
Muddle and Win balances light and dark with satisfying complexity. A fast-paced, joke-filled opening gives way to a subtly-layered novel which questions the easy assumptions we make about ‘good’ and ‘bad’. A book that reminds us that we can all break our mould - and also that bosses everywhere are much the same (even in heaven!) - Booktrust
Ideal for bright readers from 9 upwards with a wicked sense of humour and an interest in fairness, this book deals with some big concepts in a light-hearted way. ... The book could work well as a discussion text in PSHE for teachers – though the kids might laugh too much! - Serendipity Reviews
This is a quirky, comic tale, funny and full of fun. - School Librarian Journal
John Dickinson was born in London in 1962. Educated at St Paul's School London and Trinity College Oxford, he joined the Ministry of Defence in 1985, with spells at the Cabinet Office and NATO. In 2002 he left MOD to be house-husband, touchline Dad and writer. He is also the household cook, a struggling tenor and treasurer for the parish church. John lives in Painswick, Gloucestershire.