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Book Review-Rose By Holly Webb

Rose by Holly Webb is about young orphan Rose, whose life is changed when she is adopted as a housemaid in Mr Fountain’s estate. Mr Fountain is a very famous Alchemist. As Rose starts to explore around the house, she discovers that is practically overflowing with magic; she can feel it. Not so long after Rose realizes that she might, just might have a little bit of magic inside her too! Now with help from Freddie, Mr Fountain’s assistant, and Gustavus, the magic cat, she must find out who is responsible for the disappearance of her best friend and many other children around the city. Does Rose really possess magical abilities which can help her rescue missing children or will our kidnapper get to them first? A lovely and exciting book about Orphans, magical abilities, Alchemy, and sinister child-nappers. 


Rose, named after the flower that bloomed the day she arrived, is a girl in St Bridget’s Orphanage. After a while, she was adopted and taken as a housemaid at Mr Fountain’s (who is a famous alchemist) residence. After serving in her newfound home, she discovers that the place is flooded with the magic, she can feel it in the stair when she walks and the paintings on the walls. And maybe she has a little magic too.  She soon discovers that she too has magic but keeps it hidden. 

No sooner is her ability discovered by Bill, the alchemist’s apprentice and Gustavus, the talking cat. At first, he is jealous that she has more magic than him, but eventually tries to convince her to become Mr Fountain’s apprentice too. Freddie tells Rose about a young lady named miss Sparrow who visits the Alchemist frequently, they both despise her. 

When Rose goes back to visit her orphanage, she discovers that her best friend- Maisie has been taken away by her “mother”. This leads her to get suspicious and Rose’ s curiosity only spikes when she hears about other children going missing from the city. What master plan will Rose come up with a how will her new magical abilities be enough to save the children?! 


I read this book quite a while ago, but I still thoroughly enjoyed it! At first, you would think that the main plot is a bit cliché, however, when you indulge yourself into the main plot of action, it turns into something unique and different.

Rose is a poor orphan girl who turns out she can do magic or in the least possesses some of it, with help from her newfound friends, she saves the children who had been kidnapped. The writing style of this book is intended for children between the ages of 9 to 13.

 This book is filled with so much adventure, like Rose is trying to find out her true identity, having not known who her parents were, she is forming an identity for herself and it is a wonderful journey to read about! It is a book which should be read in one go, perfect for any short reads. 

This book is only the start of the Rose series by Holly Webb. 

“You should grovel. Make him grovel, girl, you saved his skin.” 

Although this story isn’t centred around it, it does contain many aspects of comedy and humour. More specifically the character of the talking cat, Gustavus, who often, makes sarcastic or witty remarks throughout the story. It is hilarious to read speech between him and any other character, he reminds of the Cheshire cat from Alice in Wonderland. 

Many people would dismiss him as a side character who isn’t directly involved with the fast-moving plot, however, I think he is such a wonderful element and adds to the storyline, and really helps with Rose’s character development. This is only the start of another amazing series mostly based around Rose being the Mr Fountain’s second apprentice. 

This book is a fantasy and children’s genre. 

Holly Webb is an author of British origin who was born in 1976. She attended Newnham College, in Oxford University where she studied classics. Currently, she is living with her husband and three kids, Ash, Robin and William, outside Reading. Her work has been translated into numerous different languages, to include Russian and Polish. She has been named one of the top ten most popular children’s writers in Russi in 2016. 

Holly is also very popular in Poland. It has been said that one of her books, Maisie Hitchins and the case of the phantom cat, was the fifth bestselling books for teenagers. 

Overall, I give Rose by Holly Webb a four out of five, for being full of adventure and brimming with magic. 

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