How I Lost My Ear: The fun-filled novel by Adam Beck, in the spirit of Roald Dahl, for both children and adults

**Finalist in both the Readers’ Favorite 2019 International Book Award Contest and the 2019 IAN Book of the Year Awards.**

A rave review by Rich Follett for Readers’ Favorite…

Adam Beck’s How I Lost My Ear is a marvelously comic, wonderfully wise, delightfully imaginative and deliriously unpredictable epic adventure. In Boony Point, young Ben Boyd covets a pair of ruby red bongo drums, seemingly tailor-made for his superstar tryout for the Marching Moose – the town’s pride and joy. Never mind that bongo drums have not previously been seen or heard in the community’s iconic marching band; Ben is determined and has the most deliciously eccentric support crew in the history of children’s literature to help him reach his goal.

Along the way, Ben contends with a practical-joking grandma fixated on crab apples harvested with the dew still on them, a monster to slay, a mystery to solve, the twists and turns of his never-ending quest to be a Member of the Marching Moose, and his own deep-seated need to overcome his unwanted nickname: Butterfingers. The drama is high, the pathos is non-stop, and the comedy is as whimsical and witty as any to be found in the realm of fiction for the young. Although How I Lost My Ear is listed as being intended for pre-teen readers, it has much to offer readers of any age who are willing to allow themselves to be young at heart long enough to become swept up in the merriment. Adam Beck is a master storyteller and a master of invention, and How I Lost My Ear is un-put-down-able.

Simon Farrow’s playful illustrations are a perfect match for Beck’s unique storyline. They capture both the eccentricity of the characters and the absurdity of the incredible situations in which they find themselves, time and again. Adam Beck’s How I Lost My Ear is always fresh, always a surprise; in short, an ideal antidote for the mundane cares of ordinary life for readers of all ages.”

And high praise from leaders in the field of children’s entertainment…

“Brilliant…an extraordinary imaginative achievement, utterly delightful, and a pleasure from start to finish. One minute it’s laugh out loud stuff, the next it’s heart in the mouth tension, and then it can be suddenly rather moving… It is wonderful, wonderful stuff.”
—Andrew Norriss, children’s author and winner of the Whitbread Award for Aquila

“Powerful, whimsical, and utterly hilarious. It reminds me of the best of Roald Dahl with a little bit of J.D. Salinger thrown in. You will love this book!”
—Josh Selig, Emmy Award-winning creator of The Wonder Pets on Nickelodeon

“Wackiness that I love, and done so well. Such an enjoyable book.”
Bill Harley, Grammy-winning children’s musician, storyteller, and author of the popular Charlie Bumpers series

How I Lost My Ear

From early 5-star reviews at Amazon

“My kids LOVE this book! Who am I kidding, I love it too! It’s funny, well written, and exceptionally engaging!”

“If you enjoy imaginative children’s fiction along the lines of Roald Dahl, you’ll love this brilliant chapter book. This would be a great book for children who are into chapter books to read alone, or for parents to read aloud with their children, as I plan to do with mine (ages 9 & 12) in the very near future.”

“This is a fast-paced story, packed with action and humor. It will delight children within a broad range of ages. The illustrations are perfect to engage the readers and spark their imagination. It’s a real page-turner, so be prepared—you may have to read longer than you plan!”

“This is a great book that is not only fun to read, but to read out loud. We couldn’t help giggling at just the character names (aka, Mayor Sackbutt), and the action doesn’t stop. The chapters are short but addictive, with lots of cliff-hangers. Its wacky sense of humor, in which everything and everyone is slightly askew (or else completely bonkers), recalls Roald Dahl in the best way. Extremely entertaining and memorable!”

“This is a wonderful story, full of adventure and fabulous characters. I highly recommend this book for tweens and teens, or as a read-aloud for any age. There are a couple of things I really appreciate about How I Lost My Ear. The first is fabulous storytelling without the cynicism or darkness that is used to create dramatic tension in so many books for this age group. Kids will love every page because, in addition to great entertainment, there is a fundamental good-heartedness to the story. The other thing I appreciate about this book is the language. The author respects his audience and their ability to appreciate humor and sophisticated storytelling. The book is very clever, with a perfect balance of irreverence and kindness. I can guarantee your kids (and you) will laugh out loud!”

About the book

Friends, I’m thrilled to finally share this book with you because, honestly, it’s the biggest, most fulfilling creative work I’ve ever completed. (From start to finish it’s been about 10 years in the making!) I’m really happy with how it turned out and I hope you and your family will enjoy my humorous, high-spirited story!

While this book is a work of fiction and not directly related to raising bilingual kidswhich makes it different from my popular nonfiction books Maximize Your Child’s Bilingual Ability and I WANT TO BE BILINGUAL!—both of these books keep Bilingual Monkeys and The Bilingual Zoo going and growing, and enable me to continue offering these resources, completely free, for everyone.

So, as with Maximize Your Child’s Bilingual Ability and I WANT TO BE BILINGUAL!, when you purchase a copy of How I Lost My Ear, or gift one to a friend, your support truly benefits us both as well as many others out in the world.

About the story

Grandpa Gristle spins the story of a book-loving boy and his spiraling adventure with a state champion marching band, a moody grandmother with beautiful blond curls, a long-lost hero and his three-legged moose, a dancing bear, a poisonous spider, a baby-snatching owl, a shaggy yak of a man and his snapping turtle, a cold-hearted sheriff and his grinning deputy, a herd of 144 spitting llamas—and a very large, very hungry ogre.

While the reading level is geared for middle grades, it’s the sort of fun, playful story—in the spirit of books by Roald Dahl—that’s entertaining for older teens and adults, too.

Illustrations from the book

Illustrations from How I Lost My Ear

Illustrations from How I Lost My Ear

Illustrations from How I Lost My Ear

Illustrations from How I Lost My Ear

Illustrations from How I Lost My Ear

Read sample pages

Read the first 11 pages of the story right now! Just click the link below to download this excerpt in a free PDF file…

Download the first 11 pages from the book.

Get a copy of How I Lost My Ear

The paperback is available at Amazon, Amazon UK, other global Amazon sites, and other booksellers.

Get the paperback at Amazon.

Get the paperback at Amazon UK.

Get the paperback at The Book Depository. (And get free shipping to anywhere in the world!)

The PDF e-book is available, as a secure download, at Gumroad. (A Kindle e-book didn’t suit the book because it has so many great illustrations and they need to be “frozen” on the page, in a PDF, to retain the design of the paperback. The PDF e-book can be read on computers, tablets and other mobile devices, or printed out on paper.)

Get the PDF e-book at Gumroad.

Bulk orders for the paperback—for schools, groups, and booksellers—can be made by contacting Adam Beck directly at: adam[at]

Please help me spread the word

  • Enjoy the book and share your impressions by posting a review at Amazon, Amazon UK, the global Amazon sites, Goodreads, and other sites online. (Even a short review is fine!) Reviews are so important for spreading the enjoyment of this book with the world and I’d be really grateful for your support in this way. (I’d love to hear from you personally, too, with your impressions!)
  • Tell others about the book through social media and word-of-mouth. Many thanks for sharing these links…
    1. the link to this page you’re now reading:

    2. this link to my author page at Amazon:
    3. this link to my author page at Amazon UK:
  • If you run a blog or website, please consider posting something about How I Lost My Ear. For inquiries related to reviews, interviews, or other posts, please email me directly: adam[at]

Thank you so much, everyone!