Maire is a baker with an extraordinary gift: she can infuse her treats with emotions and abilities, which are then passed on to those who eat them. She doesn’t know why she can do this and remembers nothing of who she is or where she came from.
When marauders raid her town, Maire is captured and sold to the eccentric Allemas, who enslaves her and demands that she produce sinister confections, including a witch’s gingerbread cottage, a living cookie boy, and size-altering cakes.
During her captivity, Maire is visited by Fyel, a ghostly being who is reluctant to reveal his connection to her. The more often they meet, the more her memories return, and she begins to piece together who and what she really is—as well as past mistakes that yield cosmic consequences.
From the author of The Paper Magician series comes a haunting and otherworldly tale of folly and consequence, forgiveness and redemption.
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.00(d)|
About the Author
Born in Salt Lake City, Charlie N. Holmberg was raised a Trekkie alongside three sisters who also have boy names. She graduated from BYU, plays the ukulele, owns too many pairs of glasses, and hopes to one day own a dog.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Maire is a baker that is able to infuse emotions with her baked goods. She has no memory of her life before the past few years One morning, her village is raided and she’s taken as a slave and sold to Allemas, a being that seems to know her before her memory blank. This book sounded really good, but as I read more, it was really not for me. It was a little bit too much based in a fantasy setting for me to get into. The characters were definitely a bit different. The writing was well done. It just wasn’t for me. **I received an ARC of this story in exchange for an honest review
Magic Bitter, Magic Sweet is the latest book by Charlie N. Holmberg. Mairie is a baker in Carmine. She has no memory of her past. Mairie was found by Franc and Arrice. They took in Mairie and helped her. It has been four and a half years since they found her. Then one day Mairie is out and notices a strange glow. It is a type of being glowing before her but is not whole (cannot touch him). He seems to know Mairie, but she (of course) does not know who he is. He tells her to run. Their village is being attacked by marauders (they ransack, kill, and kidnap people). Mairie (runs in the wrong direction) hides in a cupboard inside her bakery. The men quickly find her and take her along with Cleric Tuck (who Mairie was interested in). The marauders make them walk for days until they put the people in cages. They are selling them as slaves. Mairie is bought quickly by Allemas after examining her (he seems to know her). Allemas takes Mairie to his cottage where he locks her up (and forgets about the basic needs of humans—food, water, etc.). Allemas soon returns with baking supplies. Mairie has a special gift. She can make people feel things with her baking. Mairie is not sure what Allemas wants at first. Then when Allemas discovers that there is more to Mairie and her talents, he sets out to exploit them. This turns out to be a journey for Mairie. She looks out for the apparition and sees it again (after she finds half a beautiful crystal). The apparition knows Mairie, but he cannot tell her anything. Mairie has to discover her past for herself. She ends up going full circle in her discovery to find out what happened to her, how Allemas knows her, and her relationship to the unusual apparition that goes by Fyel. Magic Bitter, Magic Sweet was a sleeper novel. It is slow paced, strange (just plain odd), and confusing. I have to admit that it never did completely make sense and the ending did not help (maybe it is just me). I give Magic Bitter, Magic Sweet 2.5 out of 5 stars (good idea, but did not like the final product). I prefer Charlie N. Holmberg’s first books. They had something special, magical in them that this novel was lacking. The writing is good (which helps). Ms. Holmberg makes scenes come alive with her words (which is why she got the 2.5 stars). The book does have a good message if you make it to the end. I am not sure if I will be reading any more books by this author. They would have to sound really good for me to try them. I’m sorry but Magic Bitter, Magic Sweet was just not for me. I received a complimentary copy of Magic Bitter, Magic Sweet from NetGalley in exchange for an honest evaluation of the novel. The opinions and comments expressed above are strictly my own.
When I started reading Magic Bitter, Magic Sweet I wasn’t sure what to expect. All I knew of the novel was that the main character could infuse what she bakes with feelings. I sort of thought it was going to be magical realism similar to Sarah Addison Allen, and I thought a novel about a woman who owns a bakery and makes magical baked goods would be awesome (if anyone knows of a book like that please let me know). This is not that novel. Magic Bitter, Magic Sweet is a fantasy novel. It’s set in a fantasy world where magic and gods are real. It starts out with Maire in her bakery, but swiftly turns darker. Most of the town is slaughtered by bandits and Maire is sold into slavery. There are some brutal violent bits, I started to get afraid there was going to be rape (I don’t handle those scenes well and I would have quit right there) but there is not. Even though it is not the story I thought I was going to be reading, Magic Bitter, Magic Sweet has the excellent writing that I have come to expect from Holmberg, strong well developed characters and careful world building. I definitely recommend fans of fantasy read this novel.