To Maidenhead author Julia Roberts, her cats Pinot and Grigio are treated like children. 

Hilarious, mischievous and brimming with love, it’s no surprise one of the felines has become the star of Roberts' new children’s book series.

The Day Pinot Pepper Turned Blue is so much more than a story - it is a platform through which young readers can explore a myriad of vital life issues.

The story follows Pinot Pepper, a cat happy with the routines of his life. One morning Pinot awakes to find something has changed - and sets about discovering the reasons why along with his friends. 

“As children come of age, they’re going to encounter many feelings and experiences that are new, confusing and even possibly uncomfortable,” explains the author, who grew up in High Wycombe and Beaconsfield. 

“I remember those days well, and the hardest thing to do was talk about how I was feeling. I created this series so Pinot can help children navigate these changes, get clarity and come out the other end with iron-clad confidence and a sense of direction.”

Julia’s aim through her books is to help encourage the discussion of topics and feelings that may be either new, confusing or sometimes even a little frightening for young minds.

She wants to help children feel they can talk about how they are feeling without fear or embarrassment.

She said: “As the series progresses, Pinot will take children through the spectrum of life – and create a platform through which they can inwardly explore the discussion topics, as well as understand the importance of opening a dialogue with the people around them. It’s powerful stuff.”

  • The Day Pinot Pepper Turned Blue, from Nightingale Books, is available now at for £5.99.