Kensuke’s Kingdom: Facts About the Book by Michael Morpurgo

Here are some facts about Kensuke’s Kingdom by Michael Morpurgo.

  • Kensuke’s Kingdom was first published by Egmont in 1999.
  • The original edition of the book is 161 pages long.
  • The main character in the book, a boy called Michael, is shipwrecked on an island in the Pacific Ocean. The book focuses on his life on the island and the relationships he makes with its inhabitants.
  • The front cover of the early edition has an illustration inspired by the work of Japanese painter Hokusai Katsushika. The painter is mentioned in the story, too.
  • Michael Morpurgo wrote the book after on of his fans wrote to him asking him to write a story about a boy stuck on a desert island.

Kensuke's Kingdom

  • In order to learn more about yachts and round the world voyages, Michael Morpurgo took some sailing lessons before he started writing the book.
  • Kensuke, the Japanese soldier who Michael meets on the island, is named after one of Micheal’s fans who he met at  a book signing event. It’s pronounced Kensky.
  • Michael Morpurgo thought he had finished writing Kensuke’s Kingdom, but after reading it again, he decided it need something else. He added the letter to Michael as the final page.
  • Like Private Peaceful, War Horse and several other of Michael Morpurgo’s novels, Kensuke’s Kingdom has been turned into a play.

  • Michael got the name for the main character’s dog, Stellas Artois, from a boy who came to stay on his farm in Devon. The boy’s dog, an Alsatian, was called Stellas Artois.
  • As a child Michael Morpurgo enjoyed reading Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson, and although this book is very different to Kensuke’s Kingdom, they do share some common ground.

  • When asked by  a reader what he would do if he were stranded on a desert island, Michael Morpurgo said he would make himself “as comfortable as I could. Learn how to fish really well, and play on the water-slide I’d take with me!! To keep myself occupied and cheery.”

How many books has Michael Morpurgo written?

Michael Morpurgo has written more than 100 books, a mixture of novels, picture books, chapter books and collections of short stories.

Below is a list of his novels.

Michael Morpurgo’s Children’s Novels

  1. Long Way Home
  2. Friend or Foe
  3. Nine Lives of Montezuma
  4. Miss Wirtles Revenge
  5. Twist of Gold
  6. Little Foxes
  7. Why the Whales Came
  8. Tom’s Sausage Lion
  9. King of the Cloud Forests
  10. Mossop’s Last Chance
  11. My Friend Walter
  12. Mr Nobody’s Eyes
  13. Waiting for Anya
  14. The Sandman and the Turtles
  15. The War of Jenkin’s Ear
  16. The Dancing Bear
  17. Arthur, High King of Britain
  18. The Wreck of the Zanzibar
  19. The Ghost of Grania O’Malley
  20. The Butterfly Lion
  21. Robin of Sherwood
  22. Guliver’s Travels
  23. Excalibur
  24. Camelot: The Last Days
  25. Red Eyes at Night
  26. Escape from Shangri-La
  27. Wartman
  28. Joan of Arc
  29. Kensuke’s Kingdom
  30. Black Queen
  31. Dear Olly
  32. Billy the Kid
  33. Out of the Ashes
  34. Toro! Toro!
  35. The Last Wolf
  36. The Sleeping Sword
  37. Mister Skip
  38. Cool!
  39. Private Peaceful
  40. Cool as a Cucumber
  41. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
  42. The Amazing Story of Adolphus Tips
  43. I Believe in Unicorns
  44. Alone on a Wide Wide Sea
  45. Beowulf
  46. Born to Run
  47. The Mozart Question
  48. Kaspar: Prince of Cats
  49. Running Wild
  50. An Elephant in the Garden
  51. Not Bad for a Bad Lad
  52. Shadow
  53. Little Manfred
  54. Outlaw: The Story of Robin Hood
  55. Sparrow: The True Story of Joan of Arc
  56. Mr Skip
  57. A Medal for Leroy
  58. Wherever My Wellies Take Me
  59. Pinocchio
  60. Listen to the Moon
  61. An Eagle in the Snow
  62. The Fox and the Ghost King
  63. Lucky Button
  64. Toto
  65. Flamingo Boy
  66. In the Mouth of the Wolf
  67. The Snowman
  68. The Day the World Stopped Turning
  69. Boy Giant: Son of Gulliver
  70. Not Bad for a Bad Lad

Series By Michael Morpurgo

War Horse

  1. War Horse
  2. Farm Boy

Mudpuddle Farm

  1. Cock-A-Doodle-Doo!
  2. Pigs Might Fly!
  3. Alien Invasion!
  4. Six Animal Adventures
  5. Hee-Haw Hooray!

Check out his website for more information, or learn about how Michael Morpurgo writes his books.