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Guest Author - Rupert Kingfisher

Where do you find your inspiration?

Anywhere, which is why I carry a notebook, but ideas seem to come more frequently when travelling or while browsing in bookshops.

Why did you choose Paris as the setting for the series?

Because it made such an impression on me when I first visited it as a child - Madame Pamplemousse’s shop was inspired by memories of wandering through Paris streets on quiet summer mornings.

The character’s names seem to suit them so well, do you chose a name then build the character around it or vice versa?

The principal characters, Madeleine, Camembert, Madame Pamplemousse, all arrived with their names in place. With the others I chose a name to suit their character.

What is your ‘Incredible Edible’?

A seriously smelly old cheese of the kind you might find somewhere in rural France.

If you could use Monsieur Moutarde’s time-travelling machine where would you go and why?

I’d be fascinated to see what prehistoric Earth was like but would be too afraid of dinosaurs, so I’d travel back to around 300 million years ago, before they were around.

Do you have a favourite character from your books?

I like all my characters, nice or nasty, but if I had to have a single favourite it would be Camembert, since he is so much his own person.

Are your characters based on anyone you know?

No, although they might share characteristics with people I know.

Is it hard to write a series - do you have to have lots of story ideas in advance?

It’s not significantly harder than writing a single book, since each of the stories is self-contained, but with each one it gets a little harder as you have to re-introduce the characters.

Are there any plans for the series to be made into a film or TV series?

There has been interest from several film companies but nothing definite as yet.

If you could be any character from fiction who would you be and why?

Sherlock Holmes, since I admire him and have always thought he led rather an interesting life.

Who are your literary idols?

Anton Chekhov, Susan Cooper, Roald Dahl, Russell Hoban, Ursula Le Guin, Rainer Maria Rilke and William Shakespeare.

Do you have any other writing ambitions you’d like to fulfil?

Yes, I would like to write a great deal more!

What advice can you give to budding young writers?

The same advice I give myself: write what interests you and what you would like to read and then you’ll find that other people want to read it too.

What do fans of Rupert Kingfisher have to look forward to for the rest of the year?

The latest Madame Pamplemousse book, ‘Madame Pamplemousse and the Enchanted Sweet Shop’ has just been published.

Do you have a website?

Not yet but I can be found on the Bloomsbury website.

Can you sum up your Madame Pamplemousse series in 3 words?

Incredible cooking adventures.

Book Review

Madame Pamplemousse and the Incredible Edibles

Madame Pamplemousse and the Incredible Edibles

Published by Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Published 7th September 2009
RRP £4.99 softback
ISBN 978-0747592303

(reviewed for you by Lynsey Evans)

Meet Madame Pamplemousse and her cat Camembert with a café that is so understated not many know of it. It’s a place with the rarest foods such as Pterodactyl bacon, electric eel pate and the delicacy that is the yummiest thing you will ever taste, her most amazing incredible edible.

Meet Madeleine, niece to her cruel uncle, Monsieur Lard, who works her hard at the Squealing Pig and who sends her to spy on Madame Pamplemousse so she can steal the recipe for the Most Incredible Edible Ever Tasted. And this is how Madeleine’s amazing culinary talents are discovered …

This book is enjoyable to read with a fairy-tale feel to it. The characters have great names and I found myself really liking them and wanting to know more about them. This book is a great addition to any bookshelf.

Recommended for readers 7+ 

Madame Pamplemousse and the Time-Travelling Café - Review

Madame Pamplemousse & the Time Travelling Café

Published by Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Published 2nd August 2010
RRP £4.99 softback 
ISBN 978-1408800539 (reviewed for you by Lynsey Evans)

The Café of Lost Time is a charming place that has a secret … the expresso coffee maker is in fact a time-travelling machine created by Monsieur Montarde, a scientist. To time travel it needs a recipe of secret food ingredients created by culinary genius Madame Pamplemousse.

Madame Pamplemousse, her cat Camembert and their child friend Madeleine are sent on an important mission, time travelling to save Paris from an evil government who want to modernise the city and stop people eating, relaxing, falling in love and all their lazy ways.

‘Madame Pamplemousse and the Time-Travelling Café’ is a delightful modern adventure. It’s fast-paced, with characters you grow fond of and bad guys you just know will get their comeuppance - and not in the way you’d expect. This is the second book in the series, but can be read as a stand-alone story too. To finish the book a great cupcake recipe is included too! I recommend this book and think it’s a perfect way to spend a rainy day!

Recommended for readers 7+

Madame Pamplemousse and the Enchanted Sweet Shop - Review

Madame Pamplemousse & the Time Travelling Café
Published by Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Published 6th September 2010
RRP £7.99 hardback
ISBN 978-1408805053 (reviewed for you by Lynsey Evans)

‘The Enchanted Sweet Shop’ is the third book of Madame Pamplemousse’s culinary adventures and I’m pleased to tell you it doesn’t disappoint, neither does the book’s child-sized hardback format, which is very attractive and a perfect mix of contemporary and traditional.

In this adventure Madeleine is upset due to being bullied when Madame Bonbon finds her and gives her a box of truffles, which change your mood and make you forget all your worries for a short while.

Madame Bonbon is not who she seems and neither is her sweet shop ‘Sweet Dreams’ - she is after the ‘Taste-Automated Space-Time Déjà vu Generator’ - a machine for time travel. She tricks Madeleine into eating her chocolates and a spell is cast on her, she loses her memory and great cookery skill before Madame Bonbon kidnaps her. Thanks to Madeleine’s friends Madame Pamplemousse and Camembert she is rescued and then she stands up to the bullies at school. Her confidence is restored and Madeleine comes up with a fantastic 
idea …

This is yet a further delightful installment of Madame Pamplemousse’s exploits, with characters and magic I completely adore. Happy reading!

Recommended for readers 7+