I am very happy today to join The Midnight Garden in their blog tour of All Four Stars as a review stop! You can find all of the tour stops here.
All Four Stars by Tara DairmanGoodreads:
Release Date: July 10, 2014
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
“A scrumptious gem of a story!”—Jennifer A. Nielsen, New York Timesbestselling author of The False Prince
Meet Gladys Gatsby: New York’s toughest restaurant critic. (Just don’t tell anyone that she’s in sixth grade.)
Gladys Gatsby has been cooking gourmet dishes since the age of seven, only her fast-food-loving parents have no idea! Now she’s eleven, and after a crème brûlée accident (just a small fire), Gladys is cut off from the kitchen (and her allowance). She’s devastated but soon finds just the right opportunity to pay her parents back when she’s mistakenly contacted to write a restaurant review for one of the largest newspapers in the world.
But in order to meet her deadline and keep her dream job, Gladys must cook her way into the heart of her sixth-grade archenemy and sneak into New York City—all while keeping her identity a secret! Easy as pie, right?
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Four stars go to All Four Stars!
Gladys Gatsby is a foodie. At eleven years old, her greatest hobby is cooking, and she would rather spend her break making new dishes than playing with her friends. Too bad her family finds the idea of cooking repulsive and after a (minor) cooking accident, she is banned from the kitchen for the foreseeable future. A mistake at the New York Standard newspaper gives Gladys a grand opportunity--to write a food review for the paper! But pulling off the story may not happen as easily as she expected.
This book was utterly adorable, and so fun to read. It was so light-hearted, and had me laughing aloud several times! The descriptions were phenomenal, and by the end of the book, I was dying for home cooked meal. Dairman did an excellent job putting this story together. It flowed very well, and reading about the different dishes that Gladys tried making and/or ate was quite neat. Her reviews of said dishes were fantastically funny, as well, and truly made the book. Reading about Gladys' parents meals were grotesque. They made my stomach hurt just thinking about them! But when she spoke of the desserts? There was actual drool.
Gladys perspective is very interesting to read from. She's a determined character, with a good head on her shoulders and watching her grow as the book progressed was wonderful. Gladys really grew into herself, and became more confident in her future and desires by the end of All Four Stars. I really love when that happens. I adored watching her make friends, and become close to those around her. This book isn't just about one girl's passion, but how she comes to realize that there is more to life than just food/cooking--though that's quite important as well!
This is a great book for middle grade fans. It's short. It's sweet. And absolutely delicious! I really would like to see what's next for Gladys, and her career as a restaurant reviewer. This book is so perfectly adorable. Anyone who gives it a shot will be able to find something within its pages to love.
Thank you to the ladies at The Midnight Garden for allowing me to join the tour, and to Putnam for the e-copy for review!