When M.C.C. Berkshire comes into Ailsa and her mother's antiques shop, he turns their lives upside down. He moves in, sleeps on the old bed in the shop (for sale), and corners every potential customer with a specially made-up story about an item in the shop. At the end of each tale the customers are so entranced that they buy the item! Suddenly the shop is a success, with M.C.C. telling a pack of lies to suit every taste. There's a whodunnit, a spoof on Dracula, a Victorian fantasy, and nine other funny and fascinating stories. Soon Ailsa and her mother start wondering whether they should encourage M.C.C.'s lies, and without realizing it, Ailsa begins to fall in love with the magical stranger. But who is this amazing character? At the end of the book, we suddenly find out...or do we? GERALDINE MCCAUGHREAN is the winner of the 1987 Whitbread Children's Novel Award for A Little Lower than the Angels, also published by Oxford.