Title: Madame Pamplemousse and Her Incredible Edibles
Author: Rupert Kingfisher
What it’s about: Young Madeleine works for horrible Uncle Lard in his Paris restaurant, The Squealing Pig. The food he produces is mainly ghastly, though he is convinced it’s delicious. Poor Madeleine is forced to spend her holidays slaving at the kitchen sink while her parents trot off on exotic holidays, ignoring her protests that Uncle Lard is a cruel and unkind man. Then one day, when it is discovered that the restaurant is out of pate, Madeleine offers to go out to buy some in order. During her excursion, she spies a white cat and follows it to an extraordinary shop, run by the equally eccentric Madame Pamplemousse, who gives her a bottle labelled: ‘Pate of North Atlantic Sea Serpent with Green Peppercorn Mustard’. When the diners at The Squealing Pig try out the pate it is an immediate success and Uncle Lard orders Madeleine to find out the recipe, and she is sent undercover at Madame Pampelmousse’s shop.
Holly’s review: Madeleine is a lovely girl – she’s friendly and makes lovely meals. The book is very funny and is good for boys and girls because it has men and women in it. It’s also very exciting and the names are catchy, like the restaurant called The Squealing Pig. It’s definitely a comedy and I liked it because of its punchy title. It seemed odd at first but then it was hilarious when I read it. I would say it is a good story for children who are starting off reading chapter books because it is quite short.
Sam’s review: Again, Holly snaffled this down pretty quickly, meaning I didn’t get a chance to read this as much as I would like to. It was another recommended read on Amazon and I ordered it from the library, thinking that the title was intriguing and convinced that the eccentricity would appeal to Holly, especially as she’s a bit of a foodie! I agree with Holly that the shorter chapters make this an excellent choice for children who are trying to become more confident in chapter books, plus the black and white illustrations add a charming element. The Financial Times described it as ‘Think Amelie written by Heston Blumenthal’ and I think this is an apt summary! We will be reading further instalments in the near future.
Rupert Kingfisher’s web page: http://www.bloomsbury.com/Rupert-Kingfisher/authors/9628