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9781554702664_cover Enlarge Cover
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list price: $12.95
edition:Hardcover
also available: Paperback eBook Hardcover
published: Feb 2010
ISBN:9781554702664
publisher: Key Porter Books

Neil Flambe and the Marco Polo Murders

Neil Flambe Capers, #1

by Kevin Sylvester

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mysteries & detective stories
5 of 5
1 rating
rated!
rated!
list price: $12.95
edition:Hardcover
also available: Paperback eBook Hardcover
published: Feb 2010
ISBN:9781554702664
publisher: Key Porter Books
Description

Neil Flamb? is a fourteen-year-old wunderchef. He can cook anything, and he brags that he can cook it better than anyone else. He's cocky, but he may also be right. Patrons pay top dollar and wait months for reservations at his tiny, boutique restaurant.

What many of Neil’s patrons don’t know is that he’s also a budding detective. It all started when he used his knowledge of cooking and his incredible sense of smell to acquit his mother’s client of murder. Ever since, Police Inspector Sean Nakamura has relied on Neil to help him crack case after case.

Now, the city’s crime scene has taken a turn for the personal. Some of the best chefs in town are turning up dead. The cops are stumped; the only real clues are a mysterious smell and some equally mysterious notes that seem to have something to do with Marco Polo. As more chefs fall prey to the killer, Neil finds himself working not only to solve the murders, but to eliminate himself as the prime suspect!

About the Author

Kevin Sylvester is an award-winning illustrator, writer and broadcaster whose work ranges from murder mysteries and science fiction to books on sports and financial literacy. His picture books include Splinters (a Blue Spruce Honour Book) and Super-Duper Monster Viewer. Kevin’s Neil Flambé Capers series and MINRs series have both been bestsellers. His latest novel is Mucus Mayhem. His non-fiction titles include Follow Your Money, Follow Your Stuff, Baseballogy and Basketballogy. Kevin lives with his family in Toronto.

Author profile page >
Contributor Notes

Kevin Sylvester is an award-winning writer, illustrator and broadcaster. His books include Gold Medal for Weird (2009) and Sports Hall of Weird (2006). His book for adults, Shadrin has Scored for Russia, was nominated for the Leacock Memorial Medal for Humour in 2002. His illustrations have been seen in The Toronto Star, the Literary Review of Canada and on cbc.ca. Kevin is often heard on CBC Radio. He lives in Toronto, Ontario.

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
Age:
8 to 12
Grade:
3 to 7
Reading age:
8 to 12

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Reader Reviews

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Canadian Children's  Book Centre
Librarian review

Neil Flambé and the Marco Polo Murders

Writer and broadcaster Kevin Sylvester has written non-fiction books for children and adults. In Neil Flambé and the Marco Polo Murders, he begins a new and entertaining fiction series for young readers.

Neil Flambé is an extraordinarily arrogant 14-year-old master chef who runs his own dazzlingly acclaimed restaurant while attending high school. Neil’s incredibly sensitive nose not only enables him to concoct mouth-watering dishes, but also to help the police solve crimes. When someone seems to be killing off the chefs of Vancouver, Neil can identify a tantalizing smell of cumin and chai on each body. But neither he nor Police Inspector Sean Nakamura can figure out who is doing this, why or how. It takes the knowledge of Neil’s slacker cousin Larry, the wisdom of his mentor Angel Jícama and the input of a few other characters to solve the crime – after a number of twists, turns, blind alleys, rotten puttanesca sauce and tasty recipes.

An avid historian, Sylvester uses the true story of Marco Polo’s journeys to craft the mystery. He writes with lots of humour, more than a few puns and great enthusiasm for food. He fleshes out his main characters with appropriate detail to make them more than stock characters and to make the reader look forward to the next book in the series. By the end of the story, Neil has learned a few lessons about what’s important in life, but retains enough arrogance to see him satisfactorily through a few more adventures. Neil Flambé and the Aztec Abduction will be appearing in the fall of this year.

Source: The Canadian Children's Bookcentre. Spring 2010. Vol.33 No.2.

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