Rooftoppers

( 2 )

Overview

?The beauty of sky, music, and the belief in ?extraordinary things? triumph in this whimsical and magical tale? (Publishers Weekly) about a girl in search of her past who discovers a secret rooftop world in Paris.

Everyone thinks that Sophie is an orphan. True, there were no other recorded female survivors from the shipwreck that left baby Sophie floating in the English Channel in a cello case, but Sophie remembers seeing her mother wave for help. Her guardian tells her it is ...

See more details below
Hardcover
$13.86
BN.com price
(Save 18%)$16.99 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (23) from $4.77   
  • New (16) from $6.03   
  • Used (7) from $4.77   
Rooftoppers

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK Study
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$10.99
BN.com price
Note: Kids' Club Eligible. See More Details.

Overview

“The beauty of sky, music, and the belief in ‘extraordinary things’ triumph in this whimsical and magical tale” (Publishers Weekly) about a girl in search of her past who discovers a secret rooftop world in Paris.

Everyone thinks that Sophie is an orphan. True, there were no other recorded female survivors from the shipwreck that left baby Sophie floating in the English Channel in a cello case, but Sophie remembers seeing her mother wave for help. Her guardian tells her it is almost impossible that her mother is still alive—but “almost impossible” means “still possible.” And you should never ignore a possible.

So when the Welfare Agency writes to her guardian, threatening to send Sophie to an orphanage, they takes matters into their own hands and flee to Paris to look for Sophie’s mother, starting with the only clue they have—the address of the cello maker.

Evading the French authorities, she meets Matteo and his network of rooftoppers—urchins who live in the hidden spaces above the city. Together they scour the city in a search for Sophie’s mother—but can they find her before Sophie is caught and sent back to London? Or, more importantly, before she loses hope?

Phillip Pullman, author of the His Dark Materials series, calls Rooftoppers “the work of a writer with an utterly distinctive voice and a wild imagination.”

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
A baby found floating in a cello case in the English Channel, and Charles Maxim, a scholar and fellow survivor of a mysterious shipwreck, become an unconventional family, guided by the philosophy that “You should never ignore a possible.” Permissive but caring, Charles lets the baby, whom he names Sophie, write on walls, eat off books, climb things, and indulge in “mother-watching” as the years pass, until unwanted attention from the National Childcare Agency sends them in search of Sophie’s cello-playing mother. In Paris, 12-year-old Sophie takes to the rooftops, guided by irrepressible roof-dweller Matteo, an orphanage escapee who literally shows her the ropes; in one breathtaking scene, he walks her on a tightrope between buildings (“Grip with your toes. Left. Stop. Do not look down”). Eccentric, tactile food imagery appears throughout, from Charles’s pork pie served on the Bible to Matteo’s fresh-cooked rat. While the children’s uncanny survival skills take occasionally graphic turns, as in a brutal fight between rooftopper tribes, the beauty of sky, music, and the belief in “extraordinary things” triumph in this whimsical and magical tale. Ages 8–12. Agent: Claire Wilson, Rogers, Coleridge & White. (Sept.)
From the Publisher
“Katherine Rundell’s Rooftoppers, like her previous novel The Girl Savage, is the work of a writer with an utterly distinctive voice and a wild imagination. I admire her novels very much, and I hope they find the success they deserve. I’m certainly looking forward to her next."
BCCB
"Hand this to kids who like their historical fiction with a creative edge."
Phillip Pullman
“Katherine Rundell’s Rooftoppers, like her previous novel Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms, is the work of a writer with an utterly distinctive voice and a wild imagination. I admire her novels very much, and I hope they find the success they deserve. I’m certainly looking forward to her next."
Children's Literature - Caitlin Marineau
After surviving a shipwreck as an infant and found floating in the English Channel in a cello case, young Sophie has spent the whole of her life being raised by the quirky and intellectual Charles. Sophie and Charles live happily together, devouring books, writing on walls, and never ignoring life's possibilities. Once she turns twelve, however, the state decides that an eccentric bachelor has no ability to raise a proper young woman, and threatens to remove her. Fearful of losing the only family she has known, and raised to believe in the impossible, Sophie convinces Charles to take her to Paris and attempt to find the mother she lost as a baby, never believing that the woman died in the shipwreck as she had always been told. While in Paris, she gains the trust and assistance of a community of children who make the roofs, treetops, and streets of Paris their home. A whimsically elegant tale with a satisfying ending, Rundell's prose beautifully evokes the cities of London and Paris. Filled with memorable characters and an original plot, readers will be charmed by young Sophie's quest as she clamors across the rooftops of Paris. Reviewer: Caitlin Marineau
Kirkus Reviews
"Never ignore a possible." Sophie takes her beloved guardian's words to heart and never gives up on finding her long-lost mother. One-year-old Sophie is found floating in a cello case in the English Channel by Charles Maxim, a fellow passenger on the freshly sunk Queen Mary: "He noticed that it was a girl, with hair the color of lightning, and the smile of a shy person." He decides to keep her. The bookish pair lives a harmonious, gloriously unorthodox life together--she prefers trousers to skirts, knows the collective noun for toads and uses atlases as plates. The National Childcare Agency does not approve, so when a clue in Sophie's cello case links her mother to Paris, Charles and Sophie decide to skip town after her 12th birthday. Once ensconced in her Parisian attic hideaway, Sophie gets a skylight visit from a teenage "rooftopper" named Matteo, who eats pigeons and never, ever descends to street level. Sophie--anxious to help Charles find her mother--secretly joins the boy atop Paris night after night, listening for her cello-playing. Vivid descriptions of fierce kids in survival mode and death-defying rooftop scrambles are breathlessly exciting, as is the bubbling suspense of Sophie's impassioned search for the possible. Brava! This witty, inventively poetic, fairy-tale–like adventure shimmers with love, magic and music. (Adventure. 9-12)
starred review Booklist
* "A glorious adventure…the story is magic."
Wall Street Journal
“Some stories unfurl with such elegant wit that you feel the author must have been smiling constantly while typing away. Such is the case with Katherine Rundell's Rooftoppers, a sparkling and lovely novel."
Philip Pullman
“Katherine Rundell’s Rooftoppers, like her previous novel Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms, is the work of a writer with an utterly distinctive voice and a wild imagination. I admire her novels very much, and I hope they find the success they deserve. I’m certainly looking forward to her next."
Maryrose Wood
"Katherine Rundell's Rooftoppers is a confection of lyrical prose. Bold imaginative leaps carry the reader from one Parisian rooftop to the next in this unique and beautifully written tale of a girl in search of the mother whom everyone else believes is dead."
Sharon Creech
"Rooftoppers drew me in immediately and carried me along straight to the end with its original voice and lively story."
Hilary McKay
"Here comes a classic... Fantastic joyous storytelling. I was entranced. This is the only book I have ever read that made me long to cook sausages on a roof. From the first page onwards I knew I was reading something that sparkled (and it just got brighter and brighter). I'm a bit jealous actually; I wish I'd written it. Gorgeous, witty, kind, amazing, vertigo inducing, breathtaking, utterly charming, loved, loved, loved this little gem of a book. Hold your breath- this book is magic."
starred review School Library Journal
"Rundell’s gentle poetic style gives Sophie’s story a full-heartedness that makes it take flight at times and sweeps readers along with it...Realistic fiction with the feel of fantasy, this atmospheric novel will appeal to a wide range of middle-grade readers."
NYTBR
“Rooftoppers, Katherine Rundell’s winsome contribution to the genre, is a throwback, avoiding the hard-boiled life lessons of the modern child’s thriller in favor of the wishful logic of the fairy tale."
School Library Journal
★ 12/01/2013
Gr 4–6—Sophie has been living with her loving guardian, Charles Maxim, for almost all of her 12 years, ever since she was rescued as a baby from a floating cello case after a shipwreck. Charles reads Shakespeare aloud to her, serves her roast potato chips on an open atlas (owing to her penchant for breaking plates), and allows her to wear pants. In this 19th-century world, the Dickensian Miss Eliot, of the National Childcare Agency, decides that Charles is an unfit guardian and that Sophie must become a ward of the state. She and Charles escape to Paris, and it is there that Sophie begins her search for her mother, who, she is convinced, is alive after all and not drowned. Confined for security reasons to an attic room, she begins to explore the rooftops and meets an extraordinary boy, Matteo, who lives and scavenges entirely on the roofs. Life up there is full of dangers, and Sophie's determination to find her mother lands her in some tough situations. Ultimately, however, with the help of Matteo and Charles, her quest comes to a genuinely touching and satisfying conclusion. Rundell's gentle poetic style gives Sophie's story a full-heartedness that makes it take flight at times and sweeps readers along with it. In describing Charles, Rundell writes: "Think of nighttime with a speaking voice. Or think how moonlight might talk, or think of ink, if ink had vocal chords." Realistic fiction with the feel of fantasy, this atmospheric novel will appeal to a wide range of middle-grade readers.—Sue Giffard, Ethical Culture Fieldston School, New York City
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781442490581
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
  • Publication date: 9/24/2013
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 98,037
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 490L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Katherine Rundell is the author of Rooftoppers and Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms. She grew up in Zimbabwe, Brussels, and London, and is currently a Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford. She begins each day with a cartwheel and believes that reading is almost exactly the same as cartwheeling: it turns the world upside down and leaves you breathless. In her spare time, she enjoys walking on tightropes and trespassing on the rooftops of Oxford colleges.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 2 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(1)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 20, 2013

    This is a magical, wildly imaginative story and I was hooked the

    This is a magical, wildly imaginative story and I was hooked the minute I started reading it. Wonderful characters, intriguing storyline and richly evocative prose. Although marketed for young readers, this is the kind of story that will certainly be enjoyed by young and old alike and I think it's destined to become a classic.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 24, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)