have this book read by me on a free virtual school visit

Awful Al's
antics in
The Silver
Serpent Cup
Denmark This book is also available in a Danish edition entitled
Vovehalsen Vuffer og den Store Glydne Abe
translated by Berit Sørensen and published by Flachs
ISBN: 9789762730168

and print
Code Cracker
Colouring Sheets


How the Borks Became

illustrated by Ed Eaves

"In the ruins of a temple, down a dark and winding stair,
explorer Cleopatra Bones is creeping with great care.
Springing nimbly sideways to avoid a deadly trap,
she squeezes through a secret door and finds

Join Cleopatra Bones on an intrepid adventure
to find the legendary Golden Chimpanzee.
But awful Al McNasty is racing to find
the treasure too, so who will get there first?

"A fun, fast moving, rollicking rhyme from Jonathan Emmett accompanied by Ed Eaves’ detailed scenes of zany vehicles …
just the thing to keep youngsters on the edge of their seats"


UK Oxford University Press
ISBN-10: 0192767372 • ISBN-13: 978-0192767370


US Kane Miller
ISBN-13: 9781610678025


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Cleopatra Bones and the Golden Chimpanzee is a sequel to The Silver Serpent Cup, my 2015 race-themed picture book with illustrator Ed Eaves.

I think the preference many young children have for TV, film and video games over picture books has more to do with content than medium; a lot of the content that young children find extremely appealing in electronic media is relatively difficult to find in picture books. In The Silver Serpent Cup, Ed and I had drawn on the content of race-themed video games like Mario Kart and TV shows like Wacky Races for inspiration. For Cleopatra Bones and the Golden Chimpanzee, we drew on treasure-seeking video games like Tomb Raider and Temple Run and films like Indiana Jones.

While the race-winning hero of The Silver Serpent Cup is not mentioned in the book’s title (so as not to spoil the surprise for first time readers), it’s obvious from the start of this second book that Cleopatra Bones is the heroine and OUP felt that her name should be in the sequel’s title. Cleopatra’s character was originally called Oklahoma Bones but OUP Sales Manager Matt Ager suggested the name Cleopatra, which felt like a perfect fit for an adventurous archaeologist.

Although this sequel has a new heroine, alligator Al McNasty returns as the dastardly villain and eagle-eyed readers should be able to spot six more characters from The Silver Serpent Cup among the eighteen animals racing to find the lost treasure of the Golden Chimpanzee.

Five of the racers from The Silver Serpent Cup return in new vehicles for this book.

One of the most appealing things about The Silver Serpent Cup were the extraordinary vehicle designs Ed created for each of the characters and Ed has come up with a similarly impressive array of aircraft, boats and land vehicles for this follow-up. As with the first book, Ed designed each vehicle to mimic its owner. So orang-utan Diego Del Grippo’s OranguTank is fitted with two giant gripping hands that can be fired into the treetops, allowing him to swing his way through the jungle, while chameleon Pablo Prisma’s nippy little jungle buggy can change colour as quickly as he can.

Diego De Grippo and Pablo Prisma's vehicle designs mimic the creatures driving them.

To add an element of interactivity, Ed's illustrations are peppered with coded messages for readers to decipher. At the beginning of the book Cleopatra Bones discovers the location of the Golden Chimpanzee using a treasure map covered in hieroglyphic symbols. The same symbols can also be seen carved into other stone objects throughout the book. A key for decoding the symbols can be found on the book’s title page, but readers may find it easier to print out this activity sheet and use the symbol key on that instead.

The hieroglyphic symbols on the illustrations can be decoded using the symbol key on the book's title page or this activity sheet.

This book was just as much fun to work on as the first one, so I’m hoping that Ed and I will be able to bring some of our intrepid animal adventurers back for a third outing before long!


Kristian and Alexis


Illustrations © 2018 Ed Eaves. Reproduced by permission of Oxford University Press.

A fun, fast moving, rollicking rhyme from Jonathan Emmett accompanied by Ed Eaves’ detailed scenes of zany vehicles that travel over land, through water and air, driven by an array of funky animals is just the thing to keep youngsters on the edge of their seats as they root for Cleopatra and her pals.