A Near Thing for Captain Najork by Russell Hoban
Another classic from Russell Hoban and Quentin Blake, featuring a jam-powered frog and an eccentric headmistress ... as nutty and compulsive as ever.
Fooling around as he loves to do, Tom invents a jam-powered frog, and he and his Aunt Bundlejoy Cosysweet take it out for a spin. When Captain Najork sees them hopping past his window, he and his hired sportsmen jump into their pedal-powered snake and set off in hot pursuit - bent on revenge after their earlier defeat at womble, muck and sneedball. Events, adventure and sheer craziness conspire to bring Tom and the Captain together at the local girls' boarding school, where Aunt Fidget Wonkham-Strong Najork is in the middle of a best-of-three arm-wrestling contest against the Headmistress ... and the Captain is finally reduced to eating swede-and-mutton slump after a very narrow escape indeed.