By Bloomsbury

Reviewed for First Grade, 2008

Madame Pamplemousse and Her Incredible Edibles

It's summertime, and Madeleine's parents want an adults-only vacation. So she's sent to live with her horrible Uncle Lard, who dreams of becoming a famous chef but has the taste buds of an amoeba. One day, Madeleine goes out to buy supplies for Lard's restaurant, and stumbles upon a mysterious shop selling absolutely incredible edibles-- edibles like Pterodactyl Bacon and Roast Piranha with Raspberry Coulis. The pate of North Atlantic Sea Serpent with Green Peppercorn Mustard that Madeleine brings back, rockets her uncle's restaurant to instant fame. The only problem is, he now wants her to steal the recipe! Full of incredibly creative ingredients and fairytale characters, this book reminds us of early Roald Dahl. It's pitched at the 8-11 year-old crowd, but just as with books like Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, it makes a wonderfully delicious read-aloud for first graders who are inching towards chapter books. (Bloomsbury, $15.99)