Review of Gingerbread Men and Toad's Wart

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Kelyn
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Review of Gingerbread Men and Toad's Wart

Post by Kelyn »

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Gingerbread Men and Toad's Wart" by Daniel Kamin.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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Cresella is a most unusual witch. Her skin is a very human shade of pink, not the beautiful green of a typical witch. Her nose has no hook or warts, and her hands are quite smooth and unknarled. This is somewhat embarrassing at the bi-annual Witch’s Assemblies. She also has a most annoying (to the other witches) tendency to be… shudder… kind. Badgered and baited by the other witches for her entire life, when she falls in love with Walter (a human), they are determined to sabotage the relationship in any way they can. When Astrid, Cresella’s life-long frenemy, starts stirring the pot and brings in Cresella’s satyr ex-boyfriend, things really start to get interesting. (Satyr – noun - one of a class of lustful, drunken woodland gods – Mirriam Webster online dictionary). In Helios’ case, the emphasis is on lustful.

Gingerbread Men and Toad’s Wart, by Daniel Kamin, is relatively short, weighing in at only sixty-two pages. Within this brief narrative, Kamin introduces us to the world of the Thicket Beyond – beyond the human world that is. It’s not far. All you need to do is step through the shimmer of the veil, endure a (blessedly) short G-force experience, and you’re there! It is a world of magic, but not quite as we’re used to seeing it. There are witches (for hire – providing guaranteed scares for your heart-stopping pleasure), gingerbread men who really do run away and taunt their pursuers to catch them (very popular at Christmas parties), and rather insolent fairies, among other mythical and supernatural creatures.

Given that the book is not a long one, character development and world-building are somewhat limited. However, the author has ensured that the characters’ personalities are such that they wend their way into the reader’s heart. Of necessity, only the two main characters and one side character (Cresella’s ex-boyfriend) are given backstories. Of the three, we see growth and maturation primarily in Cresella’s case (as the main protagonist). In the course of the book, we watch her go from doubting her very worth as a person to an assured young woman with the means and determination to achieve her dreams and goals. Not bad for only sixty-two pages!

World-building could better be described as scene-building in this book. We are treated to tantalizing glimpses of the whole of the Thicket Beyond, but the areas best illuminated are scenes where the most action takes place. Walter’s home, where Cresella feels the first butterflies of burgeoning love for him, is a good example of this. Even then, details are largely left to the reader’s imagination guided by clues in the narrative.

Racial discrimination is the central theme of this book, though it has been woven into the narrative in such a way that it seamlessly blends with the story. The denizens of the Thicket Beyond, especially Cresella’s fellow witches, find a witch/human relationship highly undesirable and destined to fail. At first, even Cresella does not believe it could possibly work. Walter’s human friends also look askance at their relationship. It is a bias that must be overcome, at least between the two of them, if their bond with each other is to grow.

It is rare for me to award full stars to a book, but Gingerbread Men and Toad’s Wart has easily achieved it. There is not a single thing I disliked about this book. It was written with an eye towards relatable main characters and eliciting emotion for them from the reader (of course, depending on the character, that may involve admiration, fondness, exasperation, disdain, or even disgust ). Engagement with the characters is one of my favorite things to discover in the books I read. The book has been expertly edited. Stunningly, I found only a single error in its pages. Therefore, I happily award Gingerbread Men and Toad’s Wart 4 out of 4 stars. Should you have the pleasure of visiting the Thicket Beyond, I should warn you to be careful of the abominable snowmen. They can be quite aggressive.

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Gingerbread Men and Toad's Wart
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Nonso Ok
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Post by Nonso Ok »

Sounds like an amazing book I should check out. Your description of Crisella got me hooked. Great job
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Niens Now
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Post by Niens Now »

Gods and witches usually make the best subjects for captivating storylines. Thank you for a great review.
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Chiwelite O
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Post by Chiwelite O »

An expertly edited book would always be a yes for me. Great review you have here.
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Pearl Thomas
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Post by Pearl Thomas »

I'm intrigued to know how the issue of racial discrimination has been blended into such a story. Your review was damn interesting to read. Amazing!
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Luchris_michael
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Post by Luchris_michael »

It sounds like an amazing book. The storyline is a good one. Great review.
collinsogw555
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Post by collinsogw555 »

I would like to pick this interesting and fast-paced book which has to do with the love of witches and humans. This love story would be an excellent read for me. Thanks for your review.
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Angel_gaze
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Post by Angel_gaze »

What an absolutely fabulous review. I am quite desperate to visit the Thicket Beyond after your wonderful introduction. Excuse me, I'm off to buy a book.
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Kelyn
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Post by Kelyn »

Nonso Ok wrote: ↑10 Oct 2021, 03:26 Sounds like an amazing book I should check out. Your description of Crisella got me hooked. Great job
I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! Thanks for dropping by and commenting!
Books are my self-medication. 8)
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Kelyn
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Latest Review: Gingerbread Men and Toad's Wart by Daniel Kamin
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Post by Kelyn »

Niens Now wrote: ↑10 Oct 2021, 06:04 Gods and witches usually make the best subjects for captivating storylines. Thank you for a great review.
They certainly make it more interesting! Thanks for stopping in and commenting!
Books are my self-medication. 8)
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Kelyn
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Latest Review: Gingerbread Men and Toad's Wart by Daniel Kamin
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Post by Kelyn »

Chiwelite O wrote: ↑10 Oct 2021, 06:05 An expertly edited book would always be a yes for me. Great review you have here.
Thank you for the compliment! An exceptionally well-edited book is hard to find. I was pleased with this one. Thanks for stopping in and commenting. It is appreciated.
Books are my self-medication. 8)
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Kelyn
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Latest Review: Gingerbread Men and Toad's Wart by Daniel Kamin
Reading Device: B018QAYM7C

Post by Kelyn »

Pearl Thomas wrote: ↑10 Oct 2021, 09:08 I'm intrigued to know how the issue of racial discrimination has been blended into such a story. Your review was damn interesting to read. Amazing!
It was well-integrated into the narrative in a way that made it almost a subconscious find for me, but if you look at the overall story, there it is! Thanks for the compliment and for dropping by and commenting!
Books are my self-medication. 8)
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Kelyn
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Latest Review: Gingerbread Men and Toad's Wart by Daniel Kamin
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Post by Kelyn »

Luchris_michael wrote: ↑10 Oct 2021, 11:55 It sounds like an amazing book. The storyline is a good one. Great review.
I found it to be extremely entertaining reading. Thanks for stopping in and commenting!
Books are my self-medication. 8)
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Kelyn
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Latest Review: Gingerbread Men and Toad's Wart by Daniel Kamin
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Post by Kelyn »

collinsogw555 wrote: ↑10 Oct 2021, 21:08 I would like to pick this interesting and fast-paced book which has to do with the love of witches and humans. This love story would be an excellent read for me. Thanks for your review.
I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! I appreciate your stopping by and commenting!
Books are my self-medication. 8)
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Kelyn
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Latest Review: Gingerbread Men and Toad's Wart by Daniel Kamin
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Post by Kelyn »

Angel_gaze wrote: ↑12 Oct 2021, 09:09 What an absolutely fabulous review. I am quite desperate to visit the Thicket Beyond after your wonderful introduction. Excuse me, I'm off to buy a book.
It is a wondrous place. I'd like to visit there myself! Have fun and thanks for dropping by and commenting!
Books are my self-medication. 8)
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