Wednesday, November 22, 2017

A Cooked-Up Fairy Tale by Penny Parker Klostermann and illustrated by Ben Mantle

Random House Publishing
ISBN: 9781101932322
Hardcover $17.99
My thoughts: There seems to be a lot of interest in the writing world to take classic fairy tales and make them over, weave them together, or piggy back them on stories not even relative to the genre. Folks are calling these "fractured" fairy tales.

So the author of A Cooked-Up Fairy Tale has taken a contemporary boy, placed him in the land of fairy tales, given him a love of cooking and stirred the pot to have his ingredients include items from fairy tales.

This is a cute story and fun to read. The illustrations are cute, colorful, and replete with lots of expression and action.

Now if you, the parent, know your fairy tales, you'll get the gist of things. If your child isn't up to "snuff" in his or her knowledge of all things fairy tales, he may miss the connections. So some of the connectivity will be lost and leave the child muddled as they try to reason matters out. But of course, we don't want to "overthink" a picture book written for youngsters.

So how does Chat With Vera actually feel about A Cooked-Up Fairy Tale? Well, I like it and I don't like it. So given that those feelings hit both ends of the spectrum, I'm thinking perhaps this is a 3 out of 5 star rating. But given the illustrations are quite good in a cute way, I'll say a 4-star rating. And given the fact that the scene about Cinderella's pumpkin chariot being a pumpkin pie because our contemporary kid had baked the pumpkin into a pie was so roll-over-on-the-floor funny, I'd say definitely a 4-star. The only downside was the fact that little kids might miss some connections.

So go ahead and check one out at the library and enjoy. Well, just go ahead and buy one because when were fairy tales so funny?

About the book: From the creators of There Was an Old Dragon Who Swallowed a Knight comes a fun fractured fairy tale about an aspiring chef who mistakenly turns story ingredients into delectable dishes. . . . Uh-oh!

In the magical land of fairy tales, William doesn't quite fit in. He'd rather poach pears than pursue princesses, and he values gnocchi over knighthood. . . .

When he stumbles on a delivery of food destined for Fairy-Tale Headquarters (a pumpkin, apples, and a few measly beans), he decides to spice things up and whips the paltry ingredients into delectable dishes. But as you might have guessed, Snow White's wicked stepmother doesn't exactly want her magic apple baked and drizzled with caramel.

The team that brought you There Was an Old Dragon Who Swallowed a Knight delivers a hilariously fractured, whipped, and souffleed fairy tale that is chock-full of delicious details and jokes to satisfy every appetite!

DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher to facilitate a review of this cute, funny, tickle-your-funnybone picture book. Opinions are just mine, alone and are freely given.


  1. Thanks for your honest review of A COOKED-UP FAIRY TALE. Glad you liked the spread with Cinderella riding in the pumpkin pie. It happens to be my favorite spread the entire book which says a lot, because Ben Mantle did such an amazing job!
    Happy reading!

    1. Thank you, Penny, for taking the time to visit, read my comments, and leave your own. It means a lot to me to have an author whose book I'm reviewing stop by and say "Hi." I absolutely love picture books and though I've raised my five children who gave me 13 grandchildren and 1 great-grand I still love to read and review them.

      I share them with the grands still young enough to enjoy, neighbor kids, and also give them to the Christian school from which I've retired. Your book has found a wonderful home in the school's library.

    2. I love picture books, too, Vera. I'm a retired teacher also and it makes me smile to think of my book in the your school's library.


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