Book review by Aarene Storms: A Wizard's Guide to Defensive Baking

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

A Wizard's Guide to Defensive Baking by T. Kingfisher

Mona isn't a powerful wizard who can set cities on fire or use puddles of water as a walkie-talkie. Mona's little magic is all about baking. 

Her familiar is a gingerbread cookie, and she maintains a magically carnivorous, semi-sentient sourdough starter called "Bob."

When the city is threatened by invaders, and wizards of all levels are targeted by assassins, Mona draws on her friendship with a street urchin and her affinity with baked goods to survive.

Ridiculous? Yes: delightfully ridiculous, as befits a work by T. Kingfisher. Magical tropes are turned upside down, inside out, and then kneaded well before being shoved into the oven to bake until golden brown.

If you like fractured fairy tales and light, funny stories, make this your next read. It's fluffy, it's fun, and it's even gluten-free. But if there is malice in your heart, be sure to watch out for Bob the Sourdough.

No sex, no cussing. Some blood, a few (non-gory) dead bodies, plus an army of re-animated dead horses that arrives in the nick of time.

Highly recommended for readers 12 to adult.

Aarene Storms is a librarian who reads and reviews books for all ages. She can be reached at  


Unknown April 22, 2021 at 3:28 PM  

Finding author T. Kingfisher (pseudonym for Ursula Vernon) is one of the bright things that happened during the pandemic for me. Her books are funny, clever, and the perfect thing to read during hard times. I recommend them all.

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