Little Chef, Big Curse by Tilney Cotton
Published by Scholastic Australia
Little Chef, Big Curse is a tale rich in wild imaginings; a story that any young reader would be keen to immerse themselves in.
A wonderfully written story follows the trials and triumphs of our hero, Matty. A poor orphan who is under the wretched guardianship of Fenella Flinch, an unlikely and repulsive guardian whose goal in life seems to be to profit off selling revolting appetizers to the unsuspecting public.
The great question that boggles Matty is: why is he under the care of Fenella? And where does his great talent for cooking come from? Can these two answers provide him with the key to his dream?
Because Matty does have a dream – he desires to become a world famous chef and leave behind forever his atrocious existence with Fenella Finch.
The reader is enticed by an ancient and magical story of the Moon Mice, whose malice against the human race is long and far-reaching so much so that the long ago Moon Mice cast an unthinkable spell against humanity. Although the curse remains a secret (and relatively forgotten in the modern world) it may be just the thing that could save Matty Swink from his wretched existence.
Along for the wild adventure is Princess Meg, the finicky royal whose taste buds Matty must tantalize if he is to win the Kingdoms Cooking Caper and therefore fulfill his dream of becoming a famous chef. Although Meg begins life as a pernickety Princess, Matty soon realizes she is invaluable to him on his quest to solve the Moon Mice curse and win the Kings Cooking Caper unfolds.
The quirky tale is wrapped in a world of fantasy, everything from the food (Magical Mumpy Mystery Mash), to Fenella with her wig of dog hair, to those Magical Mice from Gastromo. Of course a happy ending is waiting for brave Matty but the trials he must first pass will keep the reader on tenterhooks, not to mention the murderous scandals placed throughout.
This would be a fun story to share aloud with a young reader who is keen on fantasy fiction, or a fabulous book for a more fluent reader to curl up with on a rainy day.
CKT Book Reviewer
Author: Tilney Cotton
Title: Little Chef, Big Curse
Publisher: Scholastic Australia
Published: February 2014