The Witch's Guide to Cooking with Children
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Witch's Guide to Cooking With Children, a clever update of "Hansel and Gretel," will appeal to kids who aren't upset by scary, violence-tinged humor, as a modern-day witch (who is in fact the same one from the fairy tale) gleefully takes unwanted children off their parents' hands -- and eats them. Kids who don't like scary stories may have trouble with the cannibalism, the parental betrayal, and Yoko Tanaka's highly stylized illustrations, which could be nightmare fodder for some kids and a delight to others.
What's the story?
Eleven-year-old Sol and his 8-year-old sister, Connie, have just moved to a new town when they meet a strange old lady and her cocker spaniel. Unbeknownst to them, the old lady is the same witch from the \"Hansel and Gretel\" story, who's gone from that day to this devouring unfortunate children whose parents can't wait to be rid of them -- and working on her cookbook, THE WITCH'S GUIDE TO COOKING WITH CHILDREN. Before long, the kids start to notice that things are a bit off, from their parents' strange behavior to the cocker spaniel's odd-looking bone.
Is it any good?
Both the story and the illustrations are clever and imaginative, and won't be every kid's dish -- some will love the creepiness, while others will do better with something sunnier. The narrative is sometimes disjointed and leaves many questions unanswered at the book's end, leaving room for answers in the sequel, The Witch's Curse.
Kids who don't like scary stories may have trouble with the cannibalism, the parental betrayal, and Yoko Tanaka's highly stylized illustrations, which could be nightmare fodder for some kids and a delight to others.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about how The Witch's Guide to Cooking With Children compares with other versions of the "Hansel and Gretel" story. How is it similar? How is it different?
The evil witch Fay's victims are kids, good and bad, whose parents don't want them and don't care what it takes to get rid of them. Are there are parents like this in real life? Are they the scariest thing about the story?
Why is it funny that a character who eats children has a dog named J. Swift?
|Topics:||Adventures, Book characters, Brothers and sisters, Cats, dogs, and mice, Fairy tales, Misfits and underdogs, Science and nature|
|Publisher:||Henry Holt & Company, Inc.|
|Publication date:||September 1, 2009|
|Number of pages:||192|
|Publisher's recommended age(s):||9 - 12|
|Available on:||Paperback, Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle|