PAPERBACK BOOKS
PEST CONTROL - A gripping tale of mice and men…And rats, cockroaches, pelicans and children…And geckoes, and spiders, and ladybugs, and … you’ll get the idea soon enough!

Set in exclusive Malibu, a collection of quirky little insect pests take sanctuary at 332 Cherry Lane. Having chosen to live amongst the affluent, they endure countless dramas living with the well-heeled Homo Sapiens. 

This tremendously funny and loveable bunch of pests unite as unlikely friends – once they’ve sorted out the pecking order – and call on all their ingenuity and teamwork to avoid the clutches of curious young children, all the while learning of the more sinister intentions of the older residents of the house. 

Their worst fears are confirmed, and after a raucous emergency meeting to prepare a plan for survival, the next 48 hours is intense and dramatic.  

And if successful, Leroy the alpha mouse will offer his friends a dream that could change their lives forever…

In Store Price: $AU25.95 
Online Price:   $AU24.95

ISBN:   978-1-921406-11-9   
Format: Paperback
Number of pages: 234
Genre: Children's Fiction
Cover: Riesa Ginsberg

 


Author: Victoria Frigo
Publisher: Zeus Publications
Date Published: 2008
Language: English

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About the author 

Victoria was born in London in 1972. At 12 years old she immigrated to Australia with her parents and two sisters. 

She attended school on the Gold Coast where she gained her talent for story-telling.   

When her education was complete she back-packed both Europe and America for 2 years. She returned home to start a family and is currently a mother to two beautiful sons. 

The idea for her first published book Pest Control came to her when a stink bug landed on her desk and from that day on writer’s cramp ensued on a daily basis.  

She has written many other stories, film scripts etc, won countless awards and knows most Hollywood directors on a first name basis.  In fact, she has to employ a cleaner to keep her awards gleaming ... oh yes, she likes telling stories.   

Jokes aside, Victoria comes out swinging with an imagination that runs rampant in Pest Control and who knows, if she keeps up this pace she may one day need to employ that chrome polisher.

Meet one of the characters:

 

“Everyone loves The Leroy! This story wouldn’t have worked out half as well if it wasn’t for me!”

 

A heroic mouse with healthy self-esteem

and an equally healthy appetite

(think: an in-form Eddie Murphy)

 

Chaos on Cherry Lane

 

D

 

own one of the most luxurious strips in California was the exclusive suburb of Malibu.

 

Exotic houses lined the magnificent white beaches with pests doing almost anything to reside in this prestigious street.

 

They were at number 55 Cherry Lane where the finest surgeon in America lived.

 

Doctor Deckland’s home was where the pests had chosen to set up their own private hospital, making it the finest in the suburb. This was a hospital that exceeded anyone’s expectation with the most up-to-date technology and equipment ready to cater for the need of the sick or the dying. This hospital was now working on overdrive.

 

“Why does this always have to happen? Why do they always want to poison us? What have we ever done to them?” cried a young grasshopper from her bed, where her mother was trying to calm her.

The hospital was in chaos. Hundreds of insects had been brutally poisoned at the home on Cherry Lane, with many not surviving. A nasty way to go out, but in this case there had been no prior warning. Usually one of the insects would get wind of whose house was next, but none of them had time to spread the word when the beast arrived. That was the ‘fumigator’.

 

Tears of sadness and cries of heartache flooded the hospital with many losing their loved ones. Some were not even out of diapers or hatched from their eggs, they had been taken by the poison. Nurses were now in overdrive working their hardest to keep them alive.

 

“Oh Archie, goodness gracious me, you look like you have just been dipped in tempura batter ready to be fried. Oh, you must be hurting petal, is there anything I can do for you? Maybe tell you a story about when I was young and what happened to me,” asked Rose while trying to assist Archie as he lay on his hospital bed.

 

“No way little lady, I would rather be sitting on my porch splitting some peas. There ain’t nothing that a cockroach can fix over here. Why don’t you get that fine behind walking nice and fast and find someone else to bother,” replied Archie sarcastically.

 

“Well, how rude are you, I don’t know why I bother,” said Rose rolling her eyes. “I know where to take my business,” she said as she adjusted the hair roller in the front of her antenna and stormed off.

 

“Yeah, keep moving little lady, keep walking and don’t turn back,” yelled Archie at the top of his lungs.

 

Rose did exactly that. She kept walking, but only until she reached the next bed where she found another victim to annoy.

 

Rose was the local town gossip, who would turn up to the opening of an envelope. She thrived on exaggerated stories and enjoyed spreading them even more if they were full of doom and gloom. But she did have one good point and that was she had a heart of gold. Today she was in her element at their local hospital, which had unfortunately been turned upside down yet again.

 

It was the traumatic aftermath of the insect fumigation, and in this case traumatic is exactly what it was.

 

Archie was a spider from Texas. He was suffering in intense pain with his whole body hurting. Each and every one of his legs had been injured when they were all scurrying to get away from the fumigator. Some might say that he was extremely lucky with no breakages, but he thought he had been blessed that there was no damage to the masterpiece itself. That was his face.

 

But what was the most unlucky part for poor Archie was the fact he had only been a visitor to the poisoned house. Usually he made his grand entrance over the balcony, but in this case his belly got the better of him and he chased an insect through the pipes.

 

It was certainly a hive of activity at the hospital with visiting hours nearly over. The nurses were flying around doing their best to keep their patients comfortable.

 

“My brother, he is a V.I.P. He wants some more food and he wants it now,” demanded Rafferty, pausing for just under a minute.

Rafferty then stood up on his two back legs and yelled, “Now, or he will be eating you, Miss.”

He then sat back down as if nothing had happened, rotating his thin little lips from side to side.

 

Food was served to the rat’s brother instantly, with the nurse trembling in fear.

 

“Hey you, that ain’t no way to treat a lady. She is trying her hardest to help us, you get over there and express your deepest apologies,” shouted Archie while shaking his head and chewing on something.

 

Rafferty said nothing. He just turned to Archie, glaring as if he was throwing daggers straight for his head.

 

“Oh, I think this medication is making me delirious. Did you see that? There it goes again.” Archie was doing his best to change the subject by pretending he was not all there mentally. He had just realized eight legs were bandaged up to his head and there was no way he would be running away from Rafferty, let alone moving.

 

With that, the bell rang for visiting hours to be finished.

 

“Everyone should get moving; time has elapsed. We will be seeing you all later,” sang Archie, still in high spirits.

 

It did not take long before everyone was up from their seats and heading towards the lifts to leave and go home.

 

“Hey all, much later,” screamed Archie shaking his head all cocky, but trying his hardest not to get eye contact with Rafferty from his bed.

 

Rafferty turned around with a sick bowl in his hand and threw it straight at Archie’s legs.

 

“Ow, that hurt. What did you go and do that for?” Archie screamed.

 

“Remember who you are dealing with, Archibald. You are not so tasty at this moment with bandages, but remember I know where you live and whom you live with,” responded Rafferty.

 

“Well lucky you, I’ll look forward to seeing you real soon then, not!” Archie just could not help himself. He had to be sarcastic until the very end, even if that meant getting hurt.

 

There was always something constantly going on in Archie’s world. He was extremely funny and had no problems making insects laugh. Wherever there was a prank Archie was usually behind it. But it was a different story when it came to Rafferty. No one could make him laugh, let alone smile. He was the local who kept each and everyone of them on their toes.

 

“All aboard, all aboard, hurry up all of you, the surf is just pumping, so this will be the last flight home. I have some gnarly tubes to catch,” shouted Muzza the pelican.

 

Muzza was the Australian. He had been flown over to America three years ago where he was supposed to have been placed in the Malibu Zoo, where he had been professionally trained for water skill entertainment. Fortunately for him the crate that he was transported in had been lost, and he had been found by a couple of young children who placed him on the beachfront at Malibu.

 

He had become the town’s local ambulance or taxi, who would transport folk to and from hospital or other important places. Muzza had a serious addiction to the surf and if the conditions were good he would ask one of his local friends to help out. Pretty much he was the main form of transportation and did not want to let people down.

 

“Muzza, did you hear what happened to everyone love? Oh it was so disturbing. I do not think I will be able to close my eyes for a moment tonight,” said Rose getting prepared to tell Muzza today’s events. “Well, it all started when…”

 

Muzza took no time responding. “Sorry Rose, cannot hear you,” shaking his head pretending to get water out from his ears. “My hearing, it’s a little waterlogged, take a seat love.”

 

Disappointed, Rose stumbled aboard as everyone was lined up hoping not to miss out on the flight home.

 

“God Rafferty, you weigh a ton, what haven’t you been eating? Steady on the food mate, otherwise you will have to start walking,” said Muzza in disbelief that a rat could weigh so much.

 

Slowly the dark and pensive Rafferty got on board.

 

“Hurry up, get on board please, no regurgitated food to be left on board; that is an order. Last time you flew mate, my wings were completely stuck and uncomfortable with your regurgitated food and I am not having that,” said Muzza, making sure that Rafferty knew he was serious.

 

Rafferty looked at Muzza seriously contemplating his next words. There were none, only an intense glare while he took his time to be seated.

 

Muzza did his best to get all the insects aboard before the wind came up to destroy the surf conditions. A friend of Muzza’s had found one of the best boards on the market left on the beach. It was a Bourton design that they had reformed and reshaped for Muzza.

 

“Heard you got a new board,” yelled someone from down the back.

 

“Yeah, it’s pretty awesome and I’m stoked,” responded Muzza.

 

“So much for the waterlogged ears you cheeky little rat bag, let me tell you what happened then, now you can hear,” said Rose in great anticipation, getting ready to start on another story.

 

With that Muzza began to sing a tune while everyone talked among themselves. No way was he listening to Rose the whole way home. He was getting himself all pumped up and focused for his surf while he sang ‘Surfing USA’ by the Beach Boys.

 

The journey home was quick with Muzza calling this trip home the express ride. That meant that there would only be three stops and the last was his home. Today he did not really care about anyone but himself, as flying everyone around was all he seemed to be doing at the moment. His job was all volunteer work with no allowances or rewards. He thought he should just sometimes give himself a break and not worry about everyone else all the time.

 

“Last stop, hurry up all of you, get off,” said Muzza.

 

“What a glorious day on the beach. Do not drop us off right in the middle of the beach Muzza, the sand’s hot and how’s a girl supposed to walk that far with rollers in. Remember I am only a cockroach, one with a great personality and great looks. Oh look at her in swimmers, cover yourself up love, she has lumps and bumps everywhere,” said Rose, hoping that someone was listening.

 

Muzza was just about to let her off, but could not help himself but take an extra couple of big leaps towards the water. He thought the extra journey for Rose through the sand would give some poor soul just a little more peace and quiet.

 

“Oh, you crafty devil,” yelled Rose as she flew from Muzza’s wing, landing in the hot sand screaming in dismay.

 

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