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Thursday, March 07, 2013

Daring You To Read...The Sweetest Spell by Suzanne Selfors

I have to start this Daring You To Read post off my saying that if anyone here dislikes being transported back to their childhood and chocolate, you are nuts. And for those of you who are like me that love both of the aforementioned things, than this book is beyond perfect for you.
It's no secret that I am a fairytale re-telling nut, but it's rare that you find any fairytale re-tellings that aren't related to princesses or the Brothers Grimm. Believe it or not, THE SWEETEST SPELL is neither, which makes it so much better. This story is actually a re-telling of THE UGLY DUCKLING. I don't know about you guys, but this was one of my favorite books when I was little. Coming from a Dad that is 6'5 and a mom that is 5'8 and the shortest one on her side of the family, I have height in my genes. And when I say that I mean I was the tallest girl in my group of friends and grade for quite some time. When I say that, I mean a long time. I was the first girl to walk at my grade 8 graduation. I stuck out like a sore thumb and, I mean, face it, a girl who towers over the guys is just weird. So I was my own little version of the ugly duckling, though I'm glad to report not anymore because the guys in my town finally hit puberty. Thus when I heard about this book, I snatched it right up and never regretted it for a second.
Emmeline Thistle happens to be one of the poor girls in her little village. She's known for two things. First, her mangled foot that makes all village men and women view her as a bad omen that can never be loved. Instead of it being flat it was born curled, thus walking is more of a hobbling for her and its extremely painful since all of her weight is dispersed on the side of her foot instead of the bottom of it. Secondly, her unusual connection with cows. The day she was left to die in the forest, she lived because several cows stood in a circle around her, protecting her from the hungry animals that lurk among the trees at night. Ever since the milkman's cows would wander to her home and stick their heads through her bedroom window to check on her. (I like to joke that she's sort of an awesome cow whisperer). Either way, we soon find out that this is because she has the power to churn milk into chocolate--a rare delicacy in her kingdom. Who can imagine living in a world without chocolate?! I don't even have a big sweet tooth and I need my small share of chocolate!
But back to the point, her special powers make her desired by everyone from her old crush in her old village to the King and Queen who are fighting a mounting debt. Eventually abducted and taken away from home, it is up to Owen, the boy who saved her from death after a flood wiped out her entire village to save her. It seems that everyone now wants a piece of poor, mangled Emmeline and she has trouble differentiating between those who want to use her for her new-found glorious abilities and those who just love her for her. But the one thing she is sure of is despite all of her new-found attention, she only craves that of Owen Oak--the dairyman's son. And let me tell you, when you meet Owen, you'll root for these two like no tomorrow. It was the cutest little romance I've ever seen. Our brave hero goes to the ends of his made-up land to save our unique heroine. And while it is cliche in the sense that all fairytales are, I must admit that this one is rather deliciously cliche. I never once rolled my eyes and instead I flipped pages at a rapid pace because I did not want it to end, but I couldn't get enough!
And, like any fairytale, this story contains morals. Obviously this is about showing that one can always be loved despite their flaws and to never allow negative perceptions of you to control your life. It's a story that can resonate with young girls in the world these days since outer appearances tend to mean so much. You also are delivered many other morals at the hands of secondary characters who learn that they can't judge someone by their outward appearance because they can truly be the sweetest person in the world on the inside.
I think this book can be loved by just about anyone. Mothers, college students, teenage daughters, younger young adults. Anyone. And I highly recommend checking it out. It's sweet, it's cute, and it takes you on a great journey. While it stays true to the original tale of THE UGLY DUCKLING, making the overall synopsis of the book obvious, Selfors manages to shock us time and time again with amazing plot twists that leave us craving for more. It initially upset me severely to see that this book was a stand-alone and not a series because I did get so attached to the tale and the characters, but, upon reflection, I realized that this book was so amazing that it doesn't need any other companion novels though I would still totally love one because I am the worlds biggest fan of Emmeline and Owen and forever will be. I don't want to let them go!
I highly encourage anyone to go check out my review linked below. In my opinion, this is not a book to be ignored. I've forced many people to read it because of my adoration of its sweet tale and I have yet to find a negative opinion of it. If there were any of my dares to take, it would be this one.
Emmeline Thistle, a dirt-scratcher's daughter, has escaped death twice-first, on the night she was born, and second, on the day her entire village was swept away by flood. Left with nothing and no one, Emmeline discovers her rare and mysterious ability-she can churn milk into chocolate, a delicacy more precious than gold.

Suddenly, the most unwanted girl in Anglund finds herself desired by all. But Emmeline only wants one-Owen Oak, a dairyman's son, whose slow smiles and lingering glances once tempted her to believe she might someday be loved for herself. But others will stop at nothing to use her gift for their own gains-no matter what the cost to Emmeline.

Magic and romance entwine in this fantastical world where true love and chocolate conquer all.

Daring You To Read is a weekly feature here on Tynga’s Reviews where we dare you to read some of our favorite older releases (at least 6 months old). All the books/series we choose to feature are titles we adored and think you should give them a shot! We think it’s a super awesome way to discover that special book who might have slipped off your radar!
You’ve already read the book? Let’s us know what you thought!
You are accepting the dare? We’d love to know!
Have a dare of your own? Leave a comment ^^
Do you think you can take this fantastical dare?

I'm a 18 year old from a small town in New Jersey that's a newcomer to the book blogging world. Because I am an incoming senior in high school the closest thing that I have to a job is being a volunteer at the town library, so I spend most of my time reading and persuading my parents to let me buy more books!

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3 People left their mark' :

  1. Ahhhhhh I really liked this one! I didn't love it QUITE as much as you but I still thought it was great.
    My Daring You To HAS to be Pantomime by Laura Lam!

  2. I remember seeing this around but I hadn't really spent much time investigating it. Although I adore fairy tales with princesses, I like checking out all kinds of fairy tales and this one would fit the bill.

  3. I've never heard of this one before. Great pick, Lili!