The Jolley-Rogers and the Pirate Piper - Story Snug

The Jolley-Rogers and the Pirate Piper by Jonny Duddle

We couldn’t wait for the publication of Jonny Duddle’s new story, The Jolley-Rogers and the Pirate Piper. It’s a real page turner that introduces an extremely nasty villain, Captain Horatio Rattus, who offers to help the inhabitants of Dull-On-Sea get rid of a plague of rats.

The Story: Captain Horatio Rattus unleashes thousands of rats into Dull-on-Sea. They get everywhere and rat catcher Norbert Grimes struggles to catch them. Horatio appears at a town hall meeting, disguised as The Pirate Piper, and offers to get rid of them in exchange for ten thousand pounds. In desperation the mayor, Harvey Carrot, agrees. The Pirate Piper catches the rats but when he doesn’t get the money that he asked for he uses the town’s children to get his revenge. Can Matilda and Jim Jolley-Roger come up with a plan to save the children and get rid of The Pirate Piper and his rats?

We love the way that music plays such a big role in the story. The Pirate Piper’s enchanting rat catching tunes, Jim listening to heavy metal and Nugget’s fiddle playing are all woven into the devious plan that Matilda and Jim come up with to rescue the town’s children and get rid of Captain Horatio Rattus and his rats.

It’s fabulous to see how the relationships between The Jolley-Rogers and the inhabitants of Dull-On-Sea have developed since we first met the family in The Pirates Next Door. Matilda’s parents weren’t at all enamoured by Jim and Matilda’s friendship but in the Pirate Piper, their fathers work together to help Jim and Matilda put their plan into action. Jim’s little sister, Nugget, also plays a huge role in the rescue plan with her fiddle playing, opinion is divided as to how well she can play – her family do their best to get away while she is practising but Matilda and the town’s children are enchanted by her tunes.

The Pirate Piper is a great first chapter book, it has an easy to read text which is supported by Jonny Duddle’s fabulous illustrations. The story is full of action and intrigue and Captain Horatio Rattus is a particularly nasty piece of work. We couldn’t wait to see how Matilda and Jim’s plan would work and whether he would get his comeuppance.

Jim and Matilda’s plan is complicated and very cleverly put into place, their pets play important roles too. Fluff the cat’s unusual behaviour helps Matilda to discover what has happened to the town’s children and Bones, the wooden legged dog, is assigned a very important role as a messenger.

The Pirate Piper has a great plot with lots of action and intrigue to keep you turning the pages until the very end. It’s a brilliant story!

Age Range: 5 +

Author / Illustrator: Jonny Duddle

Thank you Templar Publishing for sending a review copy of The Jolley-Rogers and the Pirate Piper. We couldn’t put it down and read it in one sitting.


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20 responses to “The Jolley-Rogers and the Pirate Piper by Jonny Duddle”


  1. Denise Johnson avatar

    This sounds great as a first chapter book for younger readers and the pirate theme is great, especially for boys although of course girls love pirates too! #MMBC


    1. Catherine avatar

      Jonny’s wonderful illustrations support the text which make this an ideal first chapter book.


  2. Lilyfae avatar

    Ah I haven’t yet seen this in the bookshops, we do enjoy the Jolley-Rogers so this twist on the Pied Piper would be great – good for twisted fairy tales too #MMBC


    1. Catherine avatar

      It’s a great twisted fairytale although it’s a while since I read the original Pied Piper story. I really must try and get hold of a copy 🙂


  3. Cheryl TimeToCraft (@CherylInTheUK) avatar

    That does sound like a fun story. I can imagine the chapters are easy to fly through. Lovely illustrations to keep the reader’s focus. #MMBC


    1. Catherine avatar

      The chapters are fairly short too which is ideal for beginner readers and the illustrations do a great job of supporting them as well.


  4. Jayne SMABL avatar
    Jayne SMABL

    What wonderful illustrations! My youngest loves pirate stories so this would be a firm favourite for him. 🙂 x #MMBC


    1. Catherine avatar

      Jonny Duddle’s rhyming picture books are great and his chapter books are really entertaining – they’re perfect for pirate fans 🙂


  5. Bec @IshMotherBec avatar

    Ah I remember reading ‘The Pirates Next Door’ with my daughter years ago, she loved it! Sadly I think she’s grown out of pirates now but I’ll remember this book for when my youngest is starting to read chapter books. #readwithme


    1. Catherine avatar

      I don’t think that being a pirate fan is necessary to enjoy these adventures, it’s been brilliant to follow the development of the relationships between Matilda’s family, the townspeople and The Jolley-Rogers since we met them in The Pirates Next Door.


  6. shelllouiseblog avatar

    I’ve not heard of this author before. I love the sound of the story and the illustrations are wonderful 🙂


    1. Catherine avatar

      Jonny Duddle’s ‘The Pirates Next Door’ was one of the first picture books that I ever bought for my daughter, we love his Jolley-Rogers’ stories 🙂


  7. Chantelle Hazelden (@MamaMummyMum) avatar

    My 6 year old daughter is still quite partial to a pirate book, the illustrations look fantastic in this one #readwithme


    1. Catherine avatar

      We love Jonny’s illustrations, they’re great to colour as well 🙂


  8. sarahmo3w avatar
    sarahmo3w

    This sounds very entertaining. My boys used to love pirate stories when they were little and I’m sure my niece and nephew would enjoy this now.


    1. Catherine avatar

      As an adult reader I really enjoyed the story. I couldn’t put it down as I was so intrigued to find out how Matilda and Jim solved the problems!


  9. mumjd avatar

    Sounds a fun read, with inspiration from the Pied Piper of Hamelin.


    1. Catherine avatar

      It is! I don’t remember the story of The Pied Piper of Hamelin, apart from all the rats. I think I should read it again 🙂


  10. Carol avatar

    A cute story – and I like the illustrations too. #MMBC


    1. Catherine avatar

      Jonny’s illustrations are fabulous. We watched him draw live at The Edinburgh Book Festival, he was dressed in a full pirate outfit!

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