Book Info: Madame Tussaud’s Apprentice

Publisher: Merit Press, Fall 2014 - Alma Press, UK, 2015

Age group: 12-17

Jacket illustration: Frank Rivera

Genre: Historical Fiction

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Madame Tussauds Apprentice
Book Club Ideas:

Madame Tussaud’s Apprentice


VENUE: Of course, Paris would be the perfect spot to hold your book club meeting for MADAME TUSSAUD.  Or even Versailles, if you really want a glamorous venue!  But because most of us lack our own private jet or millions of dollars with which to fly to Paris on a quick book-clubbing jaunt, why not bring Paris to your book clubbers instead?  Buy some French music.  Set up some small tables with candlelight.   Find some cheap berets for your book clubbers to wear.  Spray a light scent of perfume into the air.  Now close your eyes.  Are you in Paris yet?

FOOD: If not, the food should send you there.  How much fun is it to dish out food when the subject of your book takes place in France?  With the explosion of cheese shops around the country, find a nice warm baguette and experiment with different kinds of French cheeses – a cow’s milk, a goat cheese and a bit of pate, and France is within your grasp.

If you want to go really wild, cook up some roast chicken and haricots vert – the same food Celie dreams about in the Palais-Royal.  Or get your book clubbers to try escargot (snails) a real French delicacy.

Here’s a great roast chicken recipe you can try from one of my very best friends:


1 stick butter – room temperature

¼ cup plus more soy sauce

1 whole roasting chicken

minced garlic

Chinese Five Spice

Remove giblets from cavity in roasting chicken.  Toss giblets.

Mix stick of butter with 3-4 large spoonfuls of garlic

Stuff garlic butter under the breast skin of the roasting chicken

Divide and pour ¼ cup soy sauce into both sides of breast under skin

Pour more soy sauce over the top of the chicken

Sprinkle Chinese five spice over soy sauce on chicken

Bake at 450 for 20 minutes

Reduce heat to 350 and bake for 1½ hours more

Carve and serve

If, on the other hand, you are meeting for breakfast, like Marie Antoinette, why not serve your book clubbers warm, buttery croissants with hot chocolate made with whole milk and real chocolate?  Have them imagine how they would describe the new hot drink that was the rage across Europe if this was the first time they were trying it!

ONLINE RESOURCE: or to watch One Direction’s Zayn Malik being sculpted at Madame Tussaud’s

SPECIAL GUEST: If you live in a city where Madame Tussaud has one of her museums, consider making a trip and seeing her wax figures in person.  Try and get a tour with one of the museum curators.  If however, there is not a museum near you, why not contact the museum itself and try to get a Skype visit with one of the staff members.  Seeing the actual process involved in making a wax figure will bring the book to life, too!