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Last Updated: Thursday November 12 2009 06:16 GMT

Hotseat: Anthony Horowitz

Anthony Horowitz

Anthony Horowitz answers YOUR questions

Corrupt charities, shady journalists, and missions for MI6, it can only be Crocodile Tears, the latest title in Anthony Horowitz's Alex Rider series!

This time around the best-selling author's teenage superspy is kidnapped and taken to Africa as he investigates fishy business at an international charity.

Alex Rider quickly uncovers an epic plot which could kill millions, but can he stop it in time?

Newsround went to meet Anthony Horowitz in the very office that he writes his books. He answered your questions and showed us how he gets the inspiration for his own epic plots.

Here's some of Anthony's answers:

How did you come up with the idea for Alex Rider?

Helen, 12, Manchester

I used to love James Bond films when I was your age and as I got older I decided that the Bond films weren't as exciting anymore because the Bonds were too old. Roger Moore, for example, must have been 107 by the time he got to his last film.

And I thought wouldn't it be great to invent a spy who was a bit younger, maybe even a teenage spy and at that single moment the idea of Alex Rider was created. That was the beginning of it all.

Why did you choose to write another Alex Rider book after you said you had stopped after Snakehead?


Ben, 12, Southampton

Actually I never said that I would stop after Snakehead Ben, What I said was I would stop when Alex reached 15 years of age.

At the end of Snakehead he was 14 and nine months and this book is set two months later. That's when I'll stop when Alex comes to his 15th birthday, that's when you know I've stopped.

Do you use any of your personal experiences in your Alex Rider books?

Vivek, 9, Kingston

I'm afraid I don't have enough personal experience to fill an Alex Rider book! I spend too much time in my office working, writing and living in London I do use a lot of my travel, for this new book Crocodile Tears I visited Kenya, Scotland where I visited a big dam and a nuclear power station.

I even went to a GM crops research centre, all of which incidentally is giving away bits of the story! So I do use a lot of my travels for my books but I don't use experiences from my day-to-day life.

Is there going to be another Alex Rider book after this one?

Usamah, 13, London

Well, right now Crocodile Tears is the eighth Alex Rider book and the one thing that I'm determined to do is quit while I'm ahead.

I don't want you to go out and buy a book and say well it's OK but not as good as the last one.

Crocodile Tears
Crocodile Tears

Each book must be better than the one before. So I have to stop eventually, like I said before, I will stop when he turns 15.

I think you'll find that there will be two more Alex Rider books after Crocodile Tears.

The next one will be out in a year or so, which I don't know that much about.

Secret book

The book after that will be a slightly odd Alex Rider book, as Alex isn't in it very much.

It's more about Yassen the assassin who chased Alex in a few of the books at the beginning of the series.

That'll be the end of it, 10 books and then I've stopped. Except for one other book which I have in my head, but it's sort of a surprise! Not even my publishers know about it yet so don't mention it!!

Watch the video for more of Anthony's answers . .