Hi everyone, welcome to June’s first post. This post will detail a cute trilogy of reads I found quite by chance about the most adorable food-loving young girl and her culinary adventures. If you like smart young girls who have more confidence in the kitchen than me, then go ahead and press the button below.
The first installment starts with All Four Stars where we meet eleven-year-old Gladys Gatsby. Gladys has been cooking gourmet dishes since the age of seven, only her fast food loving parents have no idea. Her dream is to become a restaurant critic – but with parents who won’t cook unless they are microwaving, and friends who would laugh at her if they knew how much she loved creme brulee and arugula, she’s never even come close to eating a real four-star meal. But everything changes when Gladys gets an email from the world-famous New York Standard newspaper. After reading Gladys’s food writing in an essay contest, they think she’s a professional writer and want her to review New York’s hottest new desert bistro. Gladys can’t believe her luck! But to keep her dream job, she’ll have to cook her way into the heart of her sixth-grade nemesis and sneak into the city without her parents knowing – all while keeping her identity a secret. Easy as pie, right?
My review: What an awesome read this was!! I loved the characters and plot immensely!! Gladys has found a place in my heart and my kitchen!! This is great for all foodies no matter their age!! With every page I found myself immersed in the world of haute cuisine and newspaper articles. This read felt a bit like a movie screenplay!!
The second title in this trilogy is The stars of summer where young Gladys is looking forward to a quiet summer of cooking and eating after successfully completing her first restaurant review for the New York Standard newspaper. But her plans quickly go away when her friend Charissa Bentley delivers Gladys’s birthday gift: a free summer at Camp Bentley. As Gladys feared, camp life is not easy. She struggles to pass her swim test, fails to keep the other campers happy while planning lunches, and can’t seem to get away from the annoying new “celebrity” camper. Worst of all, there’s no time to sneak away for her latest reviewing assignment: finding the best hot dog in New York City.
My review: Ah…summer…the season of backyard baseball games, sprinkler hopping, summer camps, swimming and eating!!! Every American kid’s dream!! Not this kid though. Gladys’ secret job as a restaurant critic is under threat, summer camp forces her to act like a “normal” kid, when she clearly isn’t!! Filled with mystery and a whole lot of summer camp dramas, this read will satisfy ardent fans of light-hearted stories. Mind you, with a character like Gladys we’re getting some scenes filled with food galore!! Hope you enjoy this second installment!!
And the last title Stars so sweet takes us back home after the summer holidays to the beginning of middle school. Gladys Gatsby’s stomach is full of butterflies about starting middle school. But her concerns go beyond juggling school work and losing touch with old friends; she also has to worry about looming deadlines from her undercover job as the New York Standard’s youngest restaurant critic. When her editor pushes for a face-to-face meeting, Gladys knows she must come clean to the grown-ups in her life about her job. Her perfectly planned reveal is put on hold, though, when her parents arrive home with a surprise: Gladys’s aunt Lydia – one of the only adults who knows her secret – fresh off a plane from Paris. This book sees Gladys facing her biggest challenge yet: being true to herself and honest with her friends and family, regardless of what those around her think.
My review: A fitting end to a delectable little series!! Filled with mouth-watering dishes amongst the middle school dramas, secretive cooking sessions and possible young love about to bloom. Gladys is a very inspiring character. She goes about to make her dreams come true no matter what the obstacles she faces. I love how Tara Dairman has given the characters a more modern and realistic view of the lives kids lead today!! An amazing and inspiring series for young food lovers to enjoy!!
All three of these were so great they received 5 ⭐ each from me!!
I hope you all find these delightfully delicious reads and enjoy them as much as I did!!
Stay safe and keep reading