This is a brilliant sequel to the book ‘Murderer’s Ape’ which is one of my all-time favourite children’s books. Written by Swedish author and illustrator, Jakob Wegelius, it follows the story of Ape Sally Jones and her life as an engineer on a boat with the Chief. There is also a graphic novel prequel, ‘The Legend of Sally Jones’ which is well worth a read and tells you the main character’s origin story.
In The False Rose, we continue to follow their adventures from previous books, taking them across Europe. When Sally and the Chief discover a curious rose-shaped necklace on board their boat, they need to go on an adventure to discover the original owner of this mysterious piece of jewellery.
When their journey takes them to Glasgow, Sally and the Chief are separated when a gang becomes interested in the necklace. With Sally kept captive and forced to work for Moira and her crew, she is put in danger time and time again. Can he make it back to Lisbon safely having discovered the secrets of the rose?
This is a beautifully told story, from the perspective of Sally Jones. I found myself constantly wanting to savour the story and not want to rush through the book (not that this worked – I couldn’t quite get myself to stop reading!) and go on the adventure with Sally. Wegelius has a way of taking you on a journey; the description throughout really enabled you to build an image in your mind of not only the setting, but each of the characters too.
Of course, Sally herself is an endearing, interesting character. But for me, it was Bernie who I most enjoyed reading about in this story. The way each loose end was tied together in the end was very clever, revealing secrets and twists from the story at the last minute. We only discovered them when Wegelius wanted us too!
I really enjoyed the plot and the curious necklace which began the adventure. There was real intrigue and interest created and you become invested not only in the characters we already know, but new ones which have been introduced. There is action throughout the story which keeps you hooked, from kidnaps to gang wars!
Alongside the story, there are incredible illustrations which really enhance the reading experience. The characters are shown at the start of the book, followed by accompanying images throughout the tale.
If you like the sound of this book, you can buy it here.
📚Book gifted by publisher