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The Murderer's Ape

Written by Jakob Wegelius

Key Stage 2 Adventure Stories Gritty Reads

LoveReading View on The Murderer's Ape

Translated from the Swedish by Peter Graves.

Shortlisted for the UKLA Book Awards 2019

Sally Jones is not only a loyal friend, she's an extraordinary individual. In overalls or in a maharaja's turban, this unique gorilla moves among humans without speaking but understanding everything. She and the Chief are devoted comrades who operate a cargo boat. A job they are offered pays big bucks, but the deal ends badly, and the Chief is falsely convicted of murder. For Sally Jones this is the start of a harrowing quest for survival and to clear the Chief's name. Powerful forces are working against her, and they will do anything to protect their secrets.


The Murderer's Ape Synopsis

Sally Jones is an extraordinary gorilla and a brilliant ship’s engineer who sails the high seas on The Hudson Queen with her loyal friend the Chief. One day the shipmates are offered a mysterious job that promises to pay big bucks, but then disaster strikes, the job goes wrong and the Chief is falsely convicted of murder. For Sally Jones this is the start of a grand adventure and a desperate quest to clear her friend’s name. By freighter, steam train and bi-plane the intrepid ape journeys from Lisbon to Bombay and beyond in search of the truth. But powerful forces are working against her, and they will do anything to protect their own secrets…

The Murderer's Ape Press Reviews

‘I don’t know when I last read a book with such pleasure. It’s ingenious, it’s moving, it’s charming, it’s beautiful, it’s exciting, and most importantly the characters are people I feel I know like old friends’ – Philip Pullman

‘Charming, moving, and page-turning’ – Julia Golding

‘A rare treat; a book you want to thrust into the hands of children and adults alike’ – Observer

‘Evocative… original and old-fashioned in its storytelling…A story to lose yourself in’ – Sunday Times

‘Charming… I loved Sally Jones’s old-worldliness and Jakob Wegelius’s black-and-white illustrations. Move over, King Kong’ – The Times

‘A joy from start to finish… An adventure tale like no other, a story to get truly lost in’ – Irish Independent

‘One of the best children’s books I’ve ever read… I can’t imagine anyone reading this book and not enjoying it’ – Down the Rabbit Hole

‘Rich with lovable multi-dimensional characters that feel like family, and a European setting full of warmth and community’ – BookTrust

‘This may be the most charming book I’ve read all year’ – New York Times Book Review

‘A complex mystery and intricately constructed narrative, and deep characters’ – Kirkus

Book Information

ISBN: 9781782691754
Publication date: 29th August 2018
Author: Jakob Wegelius
Publisher: Pushkin Children's Books
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 640 pages
Year Groups: Key Stage 2
Topics: Adventure Stories, Gritty Reads

About Jakob Wegelius

Jakob Wegelius is a Swedish writer and illustrator who lives and works in the small village of Mörtfors. In Sweden, he was awarded the August Prize for Best Children’s Book and the Nordic Council Children and Young People’s Literature Prize for The Murderer’s Ape. It won the leading children’s book prizes in Germany and France and is also an International Youth Library White Raven selection. Pushkin Children’s will also publish The Legend of Sally Jones. Jakob Wegelius (c) Lena Sjöberg

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