12-year-old Robbie is not happy. Due to his father’s work, Robbie has to spend the weekend at the Institute for Animal Research, where scientists are experimenting with the hox gene. While his father is in a meeting, Robbie visits the institute’s animal house where he comes across a huge wild cat called Baldur – and discovers they share a strange telepathic bond, able to sense each other’s thoughts. Realising that Baldur is desperate for freedom, Robbie decides to release the lynx and its mate, then guide them to the safety of the Scottish Highlands. What follows is a perilous chase through the harsh wintry highland landscape, with danger right behind them. The strange truth about his connections with the lynx is always frustratingly just beyond Robbie’s grasp.
Hox is a breathlessly paced, action adventure, set, as all Kelpies Prize winning books have to be, in contemporary Scotland. An excellent debut novel by Annemarie Allan.