The Travelling Restaurant by Barbara Else

In the land of Fontania magic has been outlawed.  Ever since The Great Accident, even uttering the word ‘with five letters that began with ‘m’, had a ‘g’ in the middle and ended with ‘c’ was completely and utterly forbidden.’  The land is ruled by the Provisional Monarch, Lady Gall who keeps herself beautiful by injecting a special fluid called Beauteen into her wrinkles.  Jasper’s father, Dr Ludlow, is the inventor of Beauteen and works for Lady Gall, but when Jasper discovers that his sister, Sibilla was poisoned by Lady Gall, the family must escape.  When Jasper falls asleep on the docks, his family leave him behind.  While he’s looking for their ship he finds the Travelling Restaurant, a colourful ship run by Polly and Dr Rocket.  On the Travelling Restaurant, Jasper embarks on a wild adventure across lakes and oceans.  He faces raging rapids, troublesome monkeys and hungry pirates in the search for his baby sister, who might just be the key to saving Fontania.

The Travelling Restaurant is a magical story, set in a magnificent kingdom filled with colourful characters. My favourite character was Jasper, who is an incredibly brave boy who gets into some dangerous situations, in the hope of finding his sister.  The descriptions of the food that they prepare on the Travelling Restaurant will make your mouth water and your stomach grumble.  Barbara Else has created a world that you will never want to leave.  Recommended for 9+     9 out of 10

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