RUNNING on the ROOF of the WORLD


This novel was previously released in the UK in 2017 and this week it arrives in the states with a new cover. Trust me, it’s much better than the original cover.

The story is a page turning adventure about Tash and her best friend Sam as they flee the Chinese invasion of their homeland, Tibet. It’s their only way to keep from getting locked up and joining Tash’s parents in prison. Told from Tash’s heartbreaking viewpoint, you’ll feel empathy for what goes on in their part of the world and the harrowing journey they take to India where they hope the Dalai Lama will help.

Two precious yaks accompany them in their treacherous flight, providing warmth and additional friendship along the way. You won’t find fantasy or magical adventure on these pages. What you will find is an action packed ride perfect for young readers. Highly recommended.

PUBLICATION DATE: 2018 (North American  Release)   PAGE COUNT: 240

THE PLOT (from AMAZON):  In this contemporary story, Tash lives in Tibet, where as a practicing Buddhist she must follow many rules to avoid the wrath of the occupying Chinese soldiers. Lately, things have been relatively peaceful, as long as Tash and her family hide their religion and don’t mention its leader, the Dalai Lama.

The quiet is ruptured when a man publicly sets himself on fire in protest. Soldiers break into Tash’s house and seize her parents. She narrowly escapes, and soon she and her best friend, Sam, along with two borrowed yaks, flee across the mountains, where they face blizzards, hunger, a treacherous landscape, and the threat of discovery and capture. It’s a long, dangerous trip to the Indian border and safety—and not every member of the group will survive.

This page-turning high adventure introduces young readers to a fascinating part of the world and the threat to its people’s religious freedom. Running on the Roof of the World will appeal to fans of such topical survival adventure stories as A Long Walk to Water and Never Fall Down.



  1. Short chapters—55 of them. Averages to about four pages each. Some readers hate short chapters but teachers who read out loud in the classroom love them. Five minutes remain until the bell rings and a quick chapter can leave a class spellbound and anxious to return the next day for more.
  2. The devotion between two friends. It depicts the exact kind of friendship you hope for in every child’s life.
  3. You get a passing look at Tibetan customs, rituals, and daily life. It’s just enough to encourage finding other books about this culture.
  4. Sad, yes, but also hopeful and often uplifting.
  5. It’s great survival story. If you like that brand of story telling then this one should be on top of your list


“Go.” he whispers.

Another bang. The wood cracks.

Mom hoists me up.

“Come with me,” I say, squeezing my shoulders through the window. The splinters snag my skin.

“I can’t,” Mom says. “Now run.”

She pushes my feet and I tumble down the other side.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR—Jess Butterworth:

As a child I wanted to be many things, including a vet and even David Attenborough, but throughout all of those ideas, I always wanted to write. So I studied creative writing as a BA(hons) at Bath Spa University, where I won the Writing for Young People Prize in 2011. I then completed a Master’s in Writing for Young People, also at Bath Spa University, and graduated in 2015.

My first two novels, RUNNING ON THE ROOF OF THE WORLD and WHEN THE MOUNTAINS ROARED are set in the Himalayas. My family on my Dad’s side has lived in India for seven generations and I spent much of my childhood in India too. My father was a trek leader and we lived on a remote foothill above Dharamsala, where the Dalai Lama and a Tibetan community in exile is settled. My mother’s family lived in London, where I was born. She was off on her own adventure, travelling in India, when she met my dad. Growing up, I would always write about the Himalayas when I was in the UK and missing the mountains or my dad and grandparents who still lived there.

For more visit Jess’s website.


Make a comment if you have time. I enjoy reading all of them. Click on the comments link below.

About Greg Pattridge

Climbing another mountain...always striving to reach the next peak in my life and career.
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7 Responses to RUNNING on the ROOF of the WORLD

  1. This sounds like a fascinating read. I’ve read a lot of stories about kid’s experiences (non fiction) during the cultural revolution too when I adopted my daughter. I’ll add this to my list.

  2. cleemckenzie says:

    What an adventure that cover predicts! I love it.

  3. This books sounds really terrific. It’s not a place I know much about, so that makes it doubly interesting. And I really love the cover. Thanks for the review.

  4. Just seeing the yaks on that bridge makes the story seem treacherous. Now I’m curious what the original cover looked like. Sounds like a great read for kids!

  5. Page-turning story and short chapters? Sounds just like what some boys are looking for! Thanks!

  6. I saw this book somewhere else. Thanks for the reminder. I love books about Nepal. Enjoyed your comments. Great multicultural book.

  7. Sue Kooky says:

    I absolutely loved A Long Walk to Water. While these types of stories are sometimes hard to read, they are important too. I’m glad to hear it is good. The yaks sound so cute!! (Yakety yak don’t talk back) 😉

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