The Confectioner’s Guild by Claire Luana
Published: TODAY (23rd October 2018)
YA Fantasy, Mystery
I was given an advance reader copy (ARC) in exchange for an honest review. Receiving a free copy has in no way affected my opinion about the book. Thank you to the publisher, author and Netgalley for providing me a copy!
Wren is extremely skilled in making sweet treats, which is why a crumpy confectionery shop owner Master Oldrick took her in from the streets four years earlier. Wren’s cupcakes can work wonders but she never imagined that they might contain magic. Wren is swept up from Master Oldrick’s shop to the prestigious Confectioner’s Guild where she will join the Gifted. But then the leader of the Guild suddenly falls down dead before her. Poisoned by her cupcake.
The Confectioner’s Guild is a delightful mystery with magical elements. It is a light-read and action-packed throughout which makes it almost impossible to put down.
When the Guild’s leader is poisoned, Wren is accussed of murdering him. She has to clear her name and find the real culprit before the notoriously violent Grand Inquisitor returns to town to force the confession out of her. Overall, the plot follows a rather typical mystery storyline but the Confectioner’s Guild has something extra to offer: it is so silly. I was laughing with tears in my eyes at so many different points of the book. Most of the book’s sillyness is thanks to Wren who is rather horny and very daft throughout the story. She is supposed to find the real murderer but she has a bad tendency of procrastinating this important task by fantasizing about every other male character she happens to meet. Also, she takes pretty long to understand new pieces of evidence; something new comes up and 20 pages later Wren still hasn’t understood the importance of this new information. Usually I’m annoyed at characters who seem like they haven’t got a clue but this time I found Wren pretty entertaining. ‘I don’t know who will discover the real killer but I know who definitely won’t’ became my own personal joke.
My copy included TWO MAPS. I LOVE maps:
The country where everything takes place is tangled up in delicious politics. A king is in charge, but also the different Guilds (a separate one for all kinds of artistry) have a lot of power. The magic manifests randomly in very few, and it can only be called upon through a state of flow while working. I really liked how the magic was entangled into the politics of Maradis and how it can be infused into food or objects. My only complaint about the magic is that we don’t get to see enough of it. Baking is so delightful to read about that I would have liked to have a whole lot more of it. Also, I would have liked to see the Guild members to be more furiously passionate about their craft. In a way I was expecting to meet a bunch of cupcake perfectionists but – unfortunately – many of the characters are quite normal.
All together, the Confectioner’s Guild is not a literary masterpiece but it was really fun to read and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I’m not usually hooked by light contemporaries so this kind of light fantasies are perfect when I need something fun and easy to read. I’m planning to continue on with the series, and I’m especially motivated to do so because there is no need to wait long for the next instalments (!!!)
In fact, the second part of this trilogy, The Confectioner’s Coup, will be published already on the 19th of November 2018, and the last book in the series, The Confectioner’s Truth, will be out on the 10th of December 2018! An excert of the second book was included with my ARC copy and after reading it, I’m already excited for the next book in this series.
Have you read or are you planning to read The Confectioner’s Guild? Do you have any other recommendations for fantasy light-reads? I would love to know!
Thank you so much reading!