“This novel is a recipe for success.” —Kirkus Reviews
A thirteen-year-old chef has a lot to prove as she tries to run a five-star restaurant, repay a greedy loan shark, and outsmart the Elven mafia in this entertaining novel that combines all the best ingredients—fantasy, humor, adventure, action, cute boys, and a feisty heroine!
Lailu Loganberry is an expert at hunting dangerous beasts. And she’s even better at cooking them!
For years Lailu has trained to be the best chef in the city. Her specialty? Monster cuisine. When her mentor agrees to open a new restaurant with Lailu as the head chef, she’s never been more excited. But her celebration is cut short when she discovers that her mentor borrowed money from Mr. Boss, a vicious loan shark. If they can’t pay him back, Lailu will not only lose her restaurant—she’ll have to cook for Mr. Boss for the rest of her life.
As Lailu scrambles to raise the money in time, she becomes trapped in a deadly conflict between the king’s cold-blooded assassin, the terrifying elf mafia, and Mr. Boss’ ruthless crew. Worst of all, her only hope in outsmarting Mr. Boss lies with the one person she hates—Greg, the most annoying boy in school and her rival in the restaurant business.
But like Lailu always says, if you can’t stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen. And she’s determined to succeed, no matter the cost!
About the Author
Heidi Lang managed to stumble upon the two best jobs in the world: writing for kids and walking dogs. If she’s not out on the trails surrounded by wagging tails and puppy kisses, she’s probably hunched over her laptop working on her next book. She lives in northern California with her husband and two adventure-loving dogs, and she is the coauthor of A Dash of Dragon and A Hint of Hydra. Find her on Twitter @HidLang, or visit the website she shares with her writing partner at HeidiandKatiWrite.com.
Kati Bartkowski was originally drawn to illustration before she got swept up in the world of words. Nowadays she’s a fan of creating fantastical creatures and feisty heroines in both mediums. If she’s not reading, writing, or drawing, she’s probably chasing after her high energy little girl. She lives in northern California and is the coauthor of A Dash of Dragon and A Hint of Hydra. Find her on Twitter @KTBartkowski, or visit the website she shares with her writing partner at HeidiandKatiWrite.com.
The plot rockets along, the third-person narration peppered by agreeably colloquial dialogue. Mix a dash of humor with some action and adventure, throw in a couple of cute boys plus a gutsy heroine—this novel is a recipe for success—perfect for Top Chef fans with a penchant for the fantastical.
This middle grade fantasy introduces an exciting world where engaging human and magical characters live together. The title tackles themes of abandonment, loneliness, risk-taking, trust, and friendship. Readers are likely to become wrapped up in Laila’s story and anxious to know what her fate will be.
Lailu Loganberry is a girl with a goal. A graduate of the Chef’s Academy at a precocious 13, Lailu thinks that good food should be accessible to everyone, not just the privileged. She’s thrilled when her eccentric mentor, Master Slipshod, agrees to open a new restaurant, but her excitement dims exponentially when she learns that Slipshod borrowed the money for the restaurant from notorious loan shark Mr. Boss, and bartered Lailu’s freedom away to boot. Luckily, Lailu’s specialty is mystic cooking: she hunts and cooksmagical creatures (krakens, batyrdactyls, and, hopefully, dragons), and monster cuisine fetches a high price—if only she can convince people to come to her restaurant instead of flocking to the door of her nemesis, Greg, the wealthy and obnoxious boy from the Chef’s Academy, who always seems to be turning up at the worst possible times. Rich secondary characters—Lailu’s sticky fingered friend, an elf mafia, the king’s executioner, and a would-be hero—round out this recipe for success. A wildly inventive fantasy with wide appeal. — Maggie Reagan — Booklist