Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Keith McGowan. THE WITCH'S GUIDE TO COOKING WITH CHILDREN

The title alone would've grabbed me, if I haven't been alerted to this book because it's on next year's Bluebonnet List. When I read the title, I knew I needed to read it right away!

When the first words from the witch's diary say this:

"I love children. Eating them, that is.
I've eaten quite a few children over the centuries. You may wonder where I get them all."

You know it's gonna be good! But that really isn't enough to make a whole book. So then we're introduced to two wonderful children. Eleven-year-old Sol and eight-year-old Connie are siblings. They're unaware of the bizarre situation their parents are in, which is why they aren't curious when their dad drops them off and leaves them in town. However, they're smart kids and are able to figure out some mysteries on their own.

I don't want to give any more away. But you will absolutely love it! The tone reminds me a lot of SCHOOL OF FEAR - with the matter of fact voice and the old-fashioned feel. I loved that tone in Gitty Daneshavari's writing, as well. (LOVE her). But what made me keep reading was the hysterical beginning. What starts out as a sort of re-telling of Hansel & Gretel but ends up way more delicious!

The illustrations by Yoko Tanaka (SPARROW GIRL) give it the old-fashioned, but creepy feel the story deserves! They're perfect!