A contemporary retelling of a Midsummer Night’s Dream with a diverse cast.
Eleven-year-old Mimi Mackson feels lost in her big Indian American family, everyone else has something they are good at. Her Dad’s a renowned food writer and her mom’s a successful businesswoman. Her three older siblings are all great at things like acting, sports, and music.
It’s easy to feel invisible. Sure she has baking but she’s not sure she’s the greatest at it, she loves it though, and wants to prove she’s not the least talented member of her family. So when a new bakery called the While Away comes to town and offers a contest for young bakers she knows exactly how to do it. Plus she’ll get to meet her idol, Puffy Fay.
But strange things start happening in the Mackson household when her father returns from his business trip he’s suddenly lost his refined sense of taste. Without him to help her there is no way she’ll win the contest
Missing her friend Emma who moved out of the country earlier in the year and mourning the fact she won’t win the contest, Mimi retreats to the woods behind her house and finds herself drawn deeper in by a strangely familiar song. She meets a strange boy named Vik, he shows her parts of the forest she’s never seen before.
What’s more, he likes baking and together they find a book that tells all about the different ingredients Mimi could use for the contest. With this and Vik’s help, Mimi can’t help but win!
But things are getting stranger with her dad, and her sibling’s romantic issues cause trouble as well. It all seems to lead back to her baking, but baking can’t be magical, can it? As the contest approaches Mimi learns everything isn’t what it seems and must choose once and for all what is most important to her.
Mimi is a great heroine, and the way baking is integrated into this book is amazing. Every treat that Mimi bakes is one I want to try, except perhaps for the one that has a spoilery consequence. But they all sound tasty none the less and the cast of supporting characters from her big family to the staff at the While Away Bakery is easy to fall in love with.
Five Favorite Things
- Mimi’s Friendship with Vik
- Mrs. T
- Mimi’s family
- The book was easy to follow even without having read Shakespeare.
- The desserts.
This was easily a 4.5 book. Cute, funny, and engaging, I’ll probably read it again this year.