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An Interview with James Patterson


A Year 6 class got the opportunity to interview bestselling author James Patterson and ask him their burning questions about his latest book, Max Einstein: The Genius Experiment. Here’s what he had to say:

Who or what inspired you to write the book about Max Einstein? Daisy, age 10
Actually, the managers of the Albert Einstein Archives, who are located at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, approached me a while back, saying they’d like us to create books that will introduce kids to Einstein’s science. They said the books must be entertaining and hopefully we’ve done that.

Why did you choose Einstein as the character's name? Freddy, age 10
That actually came from the Archives; they gave us the name Max Einstein, and said tell us how you would publish a book with that character and what you think about the story. I then insisted that the protagonist be a girl.

What inspired you to have a girl main character? Molly, age 10
I wanted Max to be a girl because I think right now there are a lot of girls who need this. The Einstein Archives' mission was to show kids who Einstein was and how his theories have impacted the world – for example, we wouldn’t have telephones or satellites or a lot of things if not for Einstein. But I thought it would be good for Max to be a girl because we’re still at a point where a lot of girls and women all over the world don’t think they can be scientists and mathematicians.

Why did you choose to write about science in your book? Alfie, age 10
Well the series is all about introducing kids to Einstein’s science and I wanted to have enough science in there so readers understand more about Einstein than their parents do! But I also wanted to write an exciting adventure series that featured a character that readers can identify with, and who is making a difference in the world. I think it’s the most important book I’ve ever done. A lot scientists say what got them started was that they used to read science fiction. I hope that there are a few readers out there who will finish the book and find they’re really interested in the theories, want to learn more, and become scientists, technicians, doctors. It’s an honour to me to be able to help create that in the world. And it’s fun. We keep it interesting, and keep the science going. I mean, we start with turning horse poop into fuel right in chapter one!

What was your favourite subject in school? Omid, age 10
That would have to be history. Great story after story – which might be where I got my interest in storytelling.

Why did you make Max an orphan? Maria, age 10
I wanted to create some mystery behind where Max came from, which even I don’t know yet! There are a lot of wonderful possibilities – perhaps we’ll work in time travel or a little wormhole, or maybe Albert himself will make an appearance. Max’s past and her connection to Einstein is something we’ll keep playing with for now, while Max and her fellow kid geniuses solve problems in believable ways. 

Do you love science as much as Max? Rosa, age 10  
I’m interested in science but to write a page-turner that deals with Einstein’s science involved a degree of difficulty. It was a wonderful challenge, and I’m thrilled that this first book in the series turned out so well. 

Will there be any more adventures for Max? Camille, age 10
Absolutely! The next book is already written and I’m hoping to do at least one more.

Check out what other Toppsta reviewers are saying about Max Einstein:

An Interview with James Patterson
Book pages Placeholder Book

Max Einstein: The Genius Experiment

Albert Einstein + James Patterson = A Must Read!

James Patterson has teamed up with the world's most famous genius to entertain and inspire a generation of children - with the first and only kids' book series officially approved by the Albert Einstein Archives.

Twelve-year-old orphan Max Einstein is not your typical genius. Max hacks the computer system at NYU in order to attend college courses (even though she hates tests), builds homemade inventions to help the homeless, and plays speed chess in the park. Her not-so-normal life is crazy but predictable until...

Max is recruited by a mysterious organisation! Their mission: solve some of the world's toughest problems using science. She's helped by a diverse group of young geniuses from around the globe as they invent new ways to power the farthest reaches of the planet. But that's only if the sinister outfit known only as The Corporation doesn't get to her first...

Max Einstein is a heroine for the modern age and will be looked up to by readers for generations to come.


9th November 2018

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Featured Book
Never Trust a Gemini
Never Trust a Gemini

FEATURED BOOK FOR TEENS/YA - a laugh-out-loud LGBTQ+ romantic comedy from stellar debut talent, Freja Nicole Woolf. For ages 12+

View book