A Tangle of Knots by Lisa Graff
Current Mood: sick
Current Song: House score music
Everyone wants to have a talent. In Lisa Graff's newest book, A Tangle of Knots, that's Talent with a capital T. Eleven-year-old Cady is Talented at baking. She can bake pies like nobody else, crafting each treat specifically for the person who's going to eat it. (She'd make a wonderful employee at Willy Wonka's factory - can you imagine?) More than anything, Cady wants a family to call her own. She waits patiently at Miss Mallory's Home for Lost Girls in Poughkeepsie, New York, where she's grown close to kind Miss Mallory, who has happily accompanied her young charge to the Sunshine Bakers of America Annual Cake Bakeoff every year for the last five years.
Cady's path will soon cross with the Ashers. Marigold Asher, who is around Cady's age, is not sure what her Talent is yet, so she tries to do a dozen different things every day. Her older brother, Zane, is Talented at spitting, while her little brother, Will, has a knack for getting lost. They'll also meet a woman searching to regain her memory, a fellow with a hot air balloon, a shopkeeper who likes to steal, and his employee, Toby.
There's also a ferret. Her name is Sally, and she can usually be found at Will's side.
With its interwoven stories about these interesting and Talented characters, A Tangle of Knots will be enjoyed by folks who like Roald Dahl's works for young readers. Fans of Savvy by Ingrid Law should pick up this book and vice-versa. Aspiring bakers will get an added kick out of the recipes that are shared throughout the sweet book.
My favorite passages include:
"Life is the grandest adventure one can go on, isn't it?" the giant said kindly (he seemed to be a very friendly giant). "What else could a person ask for than just to be alive?"
Will knew exactly what a person could ask for. "Monsters," he said. "And cake."
- Page 131
I pictured Turtle Wexler from The Westing Game watching from the wings during this part:
Marigold was typically the type of girl who refrained from whacking surly old men in the shins as hard as she could. But today was not a typical day.
- Page 181
A Tangle of Knots will be floating into bookstores in February 2013.
Related Post: Interview with Lisa Graff