Book, Children’s Stories, series, Young Adult/Teen

About a Book – Amanda in France, Fire at the Cathedral by Darlene Foster

Introducing Darlene Foster


Where did the idea for the story come from?

My dream to visit the romantic city of Paris came true when we took our dog on a road trip to visit friends living on the outskirts of the city. Paris, and the surrounding area, was everything I imagined it to be and more. Our friends kindly took the time to show us around this fabulous city as well as Monet’s gardens in Giverny and the amazing Palace of Versailles. I was so excited and knew it would be a perfect setting for Amanda’s next adventure. A year later I sat in front of the television sobbing as I watched Notre Dame Cathedral burn. I knew immediately I had to include this terrible event in the book.

Give a quote from the books, one that says little but speaks volumes. 

“We have to look after ourselves before we can look after others. We would be of no use to anyone else if we were hurt or trapped, would we?”

Give a short summary of what the book is about.

Amanda explores the exciting streets of Paris, the fabulous Palace of Versailles and the gardens of the painter Claude Monet, while being drawn into the mystery surrounding the destructive fire of Notre Dame cathedral.

What genre is it?

Middle-grade, travel/adventure

How many pages is it?


Why do you think the readers will want to read it?

Readers who enjoy a strong female main character and an exciting adventure in an interesting setting will want to read this book.

Where are you located? 



Amanda is in love! With Paris – the city of love. She’s in awe of the Eiffel Tower, the Arc deTriomphe, the Louvre, and Notre Dame Cathedral.

While there, she gets to work as a volunteer and stays in a famous book store, along with her bestie, Leah, and Leah’s eccentric Aunt Jenny. A dream come true for a book lover like Amanda.

Except, while she’s at the Paris Opera House there is a bomb threat. Then the lights go out during their visit to the Louvre. Worst of all, a devastating fire blazes in Notre Dame.

Why does a mysterious man, who claims to be a busker, writer and artist, show up every time something bad happens?


As night fell and the sky grew darker, roaring flames rose higher, painting the sky bright red, orange, and yellow. From inside, the sounds of crackling and falling timbers caused Amanda to shiver when she thought of the destruction.

As if at a funeral, the crowd watched silently.

Suddenly there was a collective gasp. Amanda gazed up. The spire looked like a red hot poker against the black sky. It bent forward and toppled into the nave. Sparks flew. White hot flames shot up in the air.

It was gone.

Amanda heard sobbing behind her. An older lady put her hand over her mouth and turned from the sight. Her husband put his arm around her shaking shoulders and led her away. An immense sadness crushed Amanda’s chest. Her glasses fogged up as her eyes prickled with tears.


23 thoughts on “About a Book – Amanda in France, Fire at the Cathedral by Darlene Foster”

  1. I was horrified when Notre Dame Cathedral was burned, Darlene! I’m glad you included this historical moments in Amanda in France. I like your quote from your book. It’s the same thing we practice on the airplane and in any dangerous situations. Great interview!


  2. This is a place I’d love to explore and will definitely be doing it with Amanda:) I was heartbroken to see the fire too.


  3. Great to see Amanda here and read more about her book. I love that quote! We’d better take care of ourselves if we want to help others.


  4. Wonderful interview and I look forward to reading about Amanda’s adventures, especially in Paris. Wishing Darlene all the best, and thanks, Karen, for featuring her.


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