The Travelling Restaurant

Book Author Barbara Else
Rights Available World excl. World English
Rights sold French, Dutch (Belgium), Turkish

An adventure story about greed, rebellion, and finding allies in the most unlikely places.

In the reign of Lady Gall (Provisional Monarch of Fontania), the word magic is forbidden… When 12 year old Jasper Ludlow’s parents flee the city, he gets left behind. He finds refuge on The Travelling Restaurant, a sailing ship captained by old Dr Rocket and crewed by feisty Polly. Where is Jasper’s baby sister? He journeys across seas and rivers, faces whirlpools, storms and hungry pirates to find her. Who should he trust – his unreliable uncle, the mysterious journalist in black, or the gutsy, flute-playing orphan? Why did his parents abandon him? Who is the true monarch? Why is Lady Gall hunting him?

2012 White Raven
2012 IBBY Honour Award for Writing
2012 Honour Award, New Zealand Post Book Awards
2012 Winner Notable Junior Fiction Award, Storylines NZ Awards
2012 Winner Esther Glen Junior Fiction Award, Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa

About the Author
Barbara Else is one of New Zealand’s most successful writers, for adults and children. Her Tales of Fontania series—including The Travelling Restaurant—has been published around the world and her 2018 release Go Girl: A Storybook of Epic NZ Women is a bestseller. Else is a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to literature, and has worked as a university tutor, editor and freelance writer. She lives in Dunedin, New Zealand.


Gecko Press


198 × 129mm



Junior Fiction

Age range
9-13 years

Publication date
April 2011

Rights Available:
World excl. World English

Rights Sold: 
French, Dutch (Belgium), Turkish

Rights Agents:


Anja Mundt, Mundt Agency

China & Taiwan
ShuHuai (China)
Sushin (Taiwan)

Ayşenur Müslümanoğlu, AnatoliaLit

Contact Gecko Press about this book

The book title link will automatically be added to your message.

Just an enchantment…this is one of the best fantasy books I’ve read in several years and certainly the best New Zealand fantasy book in a long time…

National Radio New Zealand

Blending humor, suspense, and poignancy, this absorbing fantasy-adventure features an engaging, everyday protagonist who discovers courage, resourcefulness, and confidence in the face of familiar and fantastical events.

Booklist (US)