Posted 20 hours ago

A Wizard's Guide to Defensive Baking

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I really enjoyed the worldbuilding touches of how different magic worked and different wizards, and would have loved to spend time with more of the city's wizards (before spoilery things happen). Her relationship to her family and her doughy familiars – namely, sourdough starter Bob and one very protective gingerbread man – are as adorable as they are funny. Kingfisher’s latest in a run of excellent middle grade fantasies featuring intrepid children and young teens, including Summer in Orcus and Minor Mage. Which is ridiculous and insane and she’s very aware of the fact that there are lots of adults who weren’t adulting very well at all. And he is the least thing our fourteen year old magician dreams up when asked to defend her whole town from flesh eating savages.

Bob the sourdough starter is hilarious and steals every scene (and that ranks right up there with things I never thought I'd say about a book, along with spiders are cool). Mona’s wry and often disgusted commentary on what’s happening around her and just how far the situation has been left to go awry reads like both Sixteen Ways and the Discworld. I kept waiting for the little gingerbread man to run down the road shouting, "you can't catch me," but that could be because I just read The Big Over Easy. An assassin is stalking the streets of Mona’s city, preying on magic folk, and it appears that Mona is his next target. It’s fun to see Mona bringing a rather stale gingerbread man to life, but to have the gingerbread man unexpectedly develop its own personality is, well, icing on the cake.So far, so good, but with the evil wizard hunting down ALL the mages, no matter how quirky, it becomes a matter of survival. And that’s the point at which she discovers that EVERYONE has been hoping that someone else would fix the mess. A] knack for creating colorful, instantly memorable characters, and inhuman creatures capable of inspiring awe and wonder. Una novela juvenil entrañable, adictiva y con una chispa especial gracias a su genial narradora, su ambientación es realmente lo que hace la lectura un poco de "lugar feliz" al menos para mi (la ciudad medieval con magia, hechiceros y conspiraciones) pero también tiene momentos bastante oscurillos y sorprende con alguno de sus giros y reflexiones.

Both funny and completely believable, the way Mona’s desperate efforts to save the day made this a gripping read so that I stayed up far too late to discover what happened. I caught myself holding my breath during moments of danger, I found myself smiling at the Duchess, fearing for Spindle (Mona’s new friend from the more unsavory parts of town), and almost crying when Mona was faced with decisions and responsibilities no 14-year-old girl should have to face. Despite not being sure whether it would be light-hearted and humourous or darker with super high stakes, I enjoyed this audiobook!

She has a comfortable life in her aunt's bakery making gingerbread men dance and biscuits go fluffy. She accidentally made a sourdough starter familiar when she was terrified and now it is sorta alive, burbles at her when she comes to feed it or grab some material off it to make bread and she has named it Bob. The ending felt a little abrupt, but was meaningful and in keeping with the messages and themes throughout. The 103 third parties who use cookies on this service do so for their purposes of displaying and measuring personalized ads, generating audience insights, and developing and improving products.

On the scale of Kingfisher, I'd say Nine Goblins < Defensive Baking < Minor Mage < The Tomato Thief. After all, Mona didn’t kill that girl but the person who did seems to be assassinating magical folks exclusively.The story, in typical Kingfisher style, is packed with most creatively delicious (and deliciously creative) ideas.

It felt like Sixteen Ways to Defend a Walled City because to a certain extent Mona and Orhan are in the same position. I was really sad at the end this was a standalone novel since I loved being in this world with a wizard who learned how baking could help to save a kingdom. I did like that it explored why the adults not doing their jobs in the damn first place and then relying on a child to save everyone was such an awful thing, because a lot of YA fantasies either don’t have adults at all or the adults are plainly evil instead of merely sleeping on the job, and the implications of making children step up are kinda…skipped over.I live in Vienna, Austria and, apart from reading, I enjoy movies, video games, thunderstorms, eternally bickering couples, coffee, and anything made of chocolate. I’m quite happy the story is finished and offered a satisfying ending but I would definitely not be opposed to the further adventures of Mona or her friends. A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking is, like Minor Mage and Summer in Orcus, somewhat darker than may be the norm for middle grade fantasies.

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