The Taste of Snow Author:Stephen V. Masse When winter arrives in the Austrian Alps, eleven-year-old Nicole Kinders is given a candy cane by the mysterious shopkeeper, Boznik, who tells her that the candy cane is magic. After her first taste, it seems the whole world becomes more colorful, more delicious, and more dangerous. A quarrel between students on the tram home from school leads N... more »icole to intervene, beginning a frightening series of events that threaten Nicole. She finds herself losing the joy of holiday preparations, and realizes that the vexing secret she keeps is influencing every part of her life. She finds no help from the magic candy cane, and decides she must return it to the shopkeeper.« less
I enjoyed reading The Taste of Snow. Masse nails the preteen attitude and whimsy of Nicole. She is skeptical about the reality of "magic" yet can't help but wonder if it could really exist. The story isn't all peaches and cream. There were some fairly vivid parts and stories-within-a-story that were perhaps not appropriate for younger audiences (more than one near-death experience, for example). I found myself interested in the local foods and traditions of the Austrian Christmas and wanting to learn more about it. It was a very short read and would be good for a reluctant reader because of its large print and fairly brisk pace. There were very strong Christian themes throughout the book which I appreciated. The end of the book has a charming little cookbook that features some of the recipes mentioned in the story. This is a fun read, one that I enjoyed and would read again.
(Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book and was compensated for my review. The opinions stated are my own.)