#YABookCook with “Daughter of Chaos”

#YABookCook with "Daughter of Chaos" and Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
#YABookCook with “Daughter of Chaos” and Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Tonight’s #YABookCook features Daughter of Chaos by former VOYA reviewer Jen McConnel, and a simple vegetarian entre that even meat lovers will like: roasted butternut squash soup. 

Daughter of Chaos is about a teenage witch named Darlena from present day North Carolina who’s unusual magical powers catch the attention of goddesses from every culture. Hecate, Pele and Persephone; it doesn’t matter who’s messing with Darlena, the only witch she really trusts is her mom–who happens to be a vegetarian. Vegan soup it is!

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup: Ingredients

  • 1-2 pounds of cut up butternut squash
  • 2 small apples
  • 1/2 an onion
  • salt
  • 2-4 T olive oil
  • a dash of nutmeg

Directions

Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Lay out squash and sliced apples on the paper. Drizzle with 1-2 Tablespoons of olive oil.
Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Lay out squash and sliced apples on the paper. Drizzle with 1-2 Tablespoons of olive oil.
Sprinkle with salt.
Sprinkle with salt.
Roast in a 375 degree oven for 30 minutes.
Roast in a 375 degree oven for 30 minutes.
Let cool. This part is really important! Once when I made this I was in a rush and I burned myself.
Let cool. This part is really important! Once when I made this I was in a rush and burned myself.
While the squash and apples roast, sauté onion in 1-2 Tablespoons of olive oil for 5- 10 minutes until they turn brown. Be sure to stir frequently so they don't burn to the bottom of the pot.
While the squash and apples roast, sauté onion in 1-2 Tablespoons of olive oil for 5-10 minutes until they turn brown. Be sure to stir frequently so they don’t burn to the bottom of the pot.
After everything is cool, blend the squash, apples and onions with 2 cups of water until smooth.
After everything is cool, blend the squash, apples and onions with 2 cups of water until smooth.
Return soup to the stove to heat it up for ten minutes on low heat. Then sprinkle with nutmeg.
Return soup to the stove to simmer for ten minutes on low heat. Then sprinkle with nutmeg.
Yum!
Yum!

 

Now for the book review:

Daughter of Chaos by Jen McConnel features a teenage heroine with a very bad attitude problem–which is what makes Darlena so much fun to root for. Darlena pretty  much has everything a modern-witch could wish for, reasonable parents, tuition at a fancy private school, a hot ex-boyfriend who’s still into her, and a BFF who’s not afraid to do hexes. But still, Darlena manages to screw everything up in the first ten pages of the book. Hecate, the queen of all witches, pays a visit and Darlena makes a flippant comment that has life-long consequences.

Darlena may have magical powers, but she still has to deal with real life teen issues that suck–a dad who doesn’t understand her, teachers who have to follow boring standardized curriculums, and “the big” question of choosing a future career. That’s YA speculative fiction at its best–fun but also real.

My favorite part of Daughter of Chaos was watching Darlena get her head in the game. You knew she was going master her powers eventually, but you didn’t know if it would happen in time to save the people she loved.

I can’t wait to read more in the (Red Magic) series, and see how author Jen McConnel twists myths from all over the world into one connected plotline.