Imagine a magical recipe to make all your dreams come true!
Fiona Dunbar was born in Hertfordshire. She grew up trailing around jazz clubs with her jazz musician stepfather and left school when she was sixteen to go to Art College. Fiona was a regular at the Camden Palace, her and a friend would spend all Thursday night making their clothes for the Friday night's clubbing. When Fiona realised she wouldn't be a famous artist, she began a commercial art career in TV and advertising. After a stint doing illustration for Punch, which she really enjoyed, Fiona began illustrating for picture books by other authors. It was at this time that she met her lovely American lawyer husband Pano. After living in New York for a number of years, where her two children were born, Fiona settled back in North London and began to write for children instead of drawing for them! Fiona now lives in North London and is an active fundraiser for her children's primary school. She loves helping out with the Christmas pantomime and puts her eighties dressmaking skills to good use by making costumes! When she's not writing, painting or gardening, Fiona loves nothing better than to cook. Her creations might not be as magical as Lulu's but they bring just as much pleasure in the end!
Gr 4-7-Magic and cooking combine when Lulu Baker, 13, finds herself pitted against her father's gruesome fiancee. As ex-supermodel Varaminta le Bone and her loathsome son, Torquil, begin to take over Lulu's home, she is not pleased. While firming up wedding plans, the duo resort to blackmail and try to isolate the girl from her father, and she realizes that something has to be done. Her deliverance comes in the form of a mysterious cookbook discovered in strange Mister O's bookshop. It contains a recipe for cookies that cause the consumer to speak only the truth. Now it's a race against time as Lulu must find the rare ingredients for the sweets and discover a way to get her enemies to eat them before that final walk down the aisle. A sorceress/taxi driver Cassandra comes to her rescue, providing the condiments and clues to foil the le Bones. The writing is crisp and inventive, though the story is nothing new and the plot relies too heavily on the tired conceit of a magical character to solve all of the heroine's problems. In spite of this deus ex machina, the book will definitely delight kids captivated by modern fairy tales. Tasty, if not entirely filling, fare.-Elizabeth Bird, New York Public Library Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Witty and wicked, a brill read. -- Mizz 20040601