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Monday, July 9, 2012

Review: Evertaster by Adam Glendon Sidwell

TITLE: Evertaster                         AUTHOR: Adam Glendon Sidwell
PUB: Future House Pub            PUB DATE: 6/14/12
FORMAT: Kindle ebook            SOURCE: purchased

What if there were a taste so delicious that if you found it, you’d never want to eat anything else again?
When eleven year-old Guster Johnsonville rejects his mother's casserole for the umpteenth time, she takes him to the city of New Orleans to find him something to eat. There, in a dark, abandoned corner of the city, they meet a dying pastry maker who tells them of a legendary recipe called the Gastronomy of Peace -- a recipe created hundreds of years ago, shrouded in secrecy, and sought after by connoisseurs everywhere. 
So begins a perilous adventure that will take Guster, his clever sister Mariah, and the rest of the Johnsonvilles on an adventure to ancient ruins, faraway jungles and forgotten caves, where they discover that their search is more than just a quest to satisfy Guster’s cravings -- it is a quest that could change humanity forever.

THREE WORDS: Deliciously Fun & Original

MY REVIEW: Sometimes reading a book- a really, really awesome book- is an experience equivalent to savoring something super yummy. Well, reading Adam Glendon Sidwell’s Evertaster was like snacking on the most delectable, homemade cupcakes...yeah, it’s that good!

Guster Johnsonville takes being a picky eater to a whole new level. Nothing makes his taste buds dance. Fed up with his fickle ways, his mother takes him to New Orleans to find something he’ll eat and they come across a dying baker who changes their lives. The baker tells them of the Gastronomy of Peace, an ancient and secret recipe that could change the world and before he can tell them the whole story they’re attacked by mysterious chefs in red. Suddenly Guster, his mom, his sister and two brothers find themselves on the run from a secret society and in search of the secret ingredients for the Gastronomy of Peace. With only a strange, old egg beater as a map, the Johnsonvilles head out on the adventure of their lives that takes them across the globe.

Smart. Refreshing. Wonderfully written. Full of superb characters and exciting adventure. These are just a few ways to describe this fantastic MG book! Evertaster is bursting with flavor, fun and fabulousness.

Sidwell has created one of the most original, well-crafted and imaginative  MG stories I’ve come across in a long time. I love the idea of being an Evertaster, someone who doesn’t simply taste their food, but taste the soil it grew in, the ocean wind that blew across a lemon, the clovers the cows, whose milk you’re drinking, ate, the rain that fell upon the veggies. Or as it says in the book:

            Someone who tastes every flavor that ever touched every ingredient in his food. They taste time. They taste history. (Kindle, location 1450)

This book pulled me in from page one (I couldn’t put it down!) and held me enchanted till the very last word. The author writes with a clever, addicting voice that will captivate readers of all ages and the settings are vivid and lush. The story is quite cinematic and I could see every detail play out in my mind and almost taste every scrumptious tidbit.

The adventure is exciting and suspenseful with a mystery that is like the Da Vinci code for kids. There are enough thrills, twists and bad guys to keep even the most discerning palates satisfied. And I love that the whole Johnsonville family takes this journey together. Not many MG books feature parental characters that are significantly involved throughout the whole plot, but in Evertaster Mrs. Johnsonville is an important (and great!) character. But that doesn’t mean that the younger characters aren’t courageous heroes and heroines, because they are.  Guster and his siblings are charming, clever young characters that readers will easily relate to.

I love how the book concludes, but I’m ecstatic that the adventures will continue in the sequel.

MY FINAL THOUGHTS: From the spellbinding adventure, original story and engaging characters, I love everything about this dazzling and imaginative debut! This book reminds me of why I adore MG fiction (and makes me want to bake!). A MUST read book that I recommend for readers all ages!


Find the author: Site / Goodreads / Twitter / Facebook
Purchase: Amazon / B&N / Book Depository
In between books, Adam Glendon Sidwell uses the power of computers to make monsters, robots and zombies come to life for blockbuster movies such as Pirates of the Caribbean, King Kong, Transformers and Tron. After spending countless hours in front of a keyboard meticulously adjusting tentacles, calibrating hydraulics, and brushing monkey fur, he is delighted at the prospect of modifying his creations with the flick of a few deftly placed adjectives. He's been eating food since age 7, so feels very qualified to write this book. He once showed a famous movie star where the bathroom was. Adam currently lives in Los Angeles, where he can't wait to fall into the sea.


Randi M said...

I'm so excited for this book! And you've written a lovely review. :) Thank you for sharing it and for sharing the trailer, as well. I hadn't seen the trailer yet! Yay for awesome middle grades books!

Crystal Clifton said...

This book sounds amazing and I will so have it one way or another very informing interview

Jax's Book Magic said...

How adorable does this book sound.

Anonymous said...

Wow....I must read this! Thanks for much for featuring it. And don't you love it when you feel that way about a book?

Jenn said...

Wow, thanks for the review! This is definitely going on my to-read list!

TuRtLe's Adventures and Escapes: Imagination Required!lm mom Mmm said...

I have a condition which causes me to have no appetite, and the things that I eat make me sick. This book sounds like an exciting tale, and I hope I get a chance to win and read about how Guston finally can eat without it tasting awful! Belch!
Thanks for the chance at the giveaway!