Book Reviews

Book Review: Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell

Happy Monday bookish people! I hope you’re all having a good day today. I will be sharing my thoughts on the book Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell.

In this book review I will give star ratings to four categories and I will write a little bit about each one. I will try to keep it as spoiler free as possible. I hope you enjoy my book review.

Rooftoppers Plot:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This is my first Katherine Rundell book and I was very excited to read it because it is set in Victorian (I think) Paris and and it features rooftoppers which are groups of children that live on the rooftops of Paris and rarely touch the ground.

I loved the atmosphere of this book, the sensory descriptions were engaging to the point that I could almost smell the smoke from the chimneys.

The main thing that I enjoyed about the plot was the focus on family. It wasn’t only biological family either, Sophie (the protagonist) is looking for her Mother, but also found family – the rooftoppers are family to each other and Charles is Sophie’s guardian throughout the book. It’s great to see wonderful children’s books featuring strong family bonds.

Rooftoppers Characters:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Sophie is the protagonist in this book, she lost her Mother as a baby and is being raised by a man called Charles, who raises her with curiosity, imagination and a love of wearing trousers. Sophie believes her mother is still alive. She is adventurous, brave and willful. I enjoyed seeing the development of the character as she found herself and what she would give to find her mother. Mateo is the main rooftopper featured in this book and the relationship between him and Sophie was one of my favourite parts of this book.

Rooftoppers Writing and dialogue:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I definitely want to pick up more books by Katherine Rundell after reading this one. The writing was whimsical and full of meaning. There was the perfect balance between sad tones and joyful tones throughout the novel.

Rooftoppers Overall:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I gave this book four stars because it took me away to a different world, a world where I was living amongst the roofs of Paris and that for me is one of the best things that books can do.


Everyone thinks that Sophie is an orphan. True, there were no other recorded female survivors from the shipwreck which 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 that means still possible. You should never ignore a possible. So when the Welfare Agency writes to her guardian threatening to send Sophie to an orphanage, she takes matters into her own hands and flees to Paris to look for her mother, starting with the only clue she has – the address of the cello maker. Evading the French authorities, she meets Matteo and his network of rooftoppers – urchins who live in the sky. Together they scour the city for Sophie’s mother before she is caught and sent back to London, and most importantly before she loses hope.

That’s it for this book review, I hope you all enjoyed it!