Sizzling Book Club Pick for December: Sorcery & Cecelia, Or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot

Sorcery and Cecelia, or The Changed Chocolate Pot - a fantasy Regency romance in epistolary style

Time to announce the December book club pick! I went with something a little different, but something that I know many of you already love. Our selection is Sorcery and Cecelia, or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot by Patricia C. Wrede and Caroline Stevermer.

Here's the summary:

Since they were children, cousins Kate and Cecelia have been inseparable. But in 1817, as they approach adulthood, their families force them to spend a summer apart. As Cecelia fights boredom in her small country town, Kate visits London to mingle with the brightest lights of English society.

Sorcery and Cecelia - ebook cover (a pot of ink and quill on a parchment background) At the initiation of a powerful magician into the Royal College of Wizards, Kate finds herself alone with a mysterious witch who offers her a sip from a chocolate pot. When Kate refuses the drink, the chocolate burns through her dress and the witch disappears. It seems that strange forces are convening to destroy a beloved wizard, and only Kate and Cecelia can stop the plot.

But for two girls who have to contend with the pressures of choosing dresses and beaux for their debuts, deadly magic is only one of their concerns.

The story is told in epistolary style with letters back and forth that are terribly easy to sink into. There's magic adjacent to Regency manners, romance and mystery – there's a lot to enjoy in this book, y'all.

The book is available digitally and in paperback. As always, All Romance eBooks is offering the 50% eBook Buck rebate if you use code SBTBARE at checkout. Plus, since Open Road Media is the digital publisher, coupons are welcome (Yay!).

The rebate will be valid from December 1-14, 2012. 

And if paper is your preference, you can find a copy at Amazon, BN, or your local independent bookseller, or perhaps your local library. (That's a US library link – if there's a website that collates other library catalogs in other countries, please let me know!) 

I'm working on setting up a chat date and as soon as I have details I will let you know.

I hope you give this book a try if you've never read it, and if you already have, that you'll join us for the chat. This is an immensely creative and delightful book, and I hope you enjoy it.

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  1. 1
    Rebekah Ward says:

    I love Sorcery and Cecelia!  So much.  So, so, so, so much!

  2. 2

    I can’t believe the library actually has a copy of a book club pick.  i might actually get to participate in the chat this month!

  3. 3

    …. whoa. This actually sounds relevant to my interests. :)

  4. 4
    cleo says:

    I love this book and I’m so, so glad that it’s found an audience.  I read it way back when it first came out, and it seemed like my roommates and I were the only people on the planet who’d even heard of it.  And now it’s been re-released, with a snazzy cover, and 2 sequels, and it’s the SBTB book club choice.  Woo-hoo!

  5. 5
    SB Sarah says:

    I’ve been trying to mix up the book club picks with new and older titles so there’s a greater chance that they’re in the library. I’m glad your library has a copy! YAY!

  6. 6
    SB Sarah says:

    I’m so happy y’all are excited! This book will charm you right out of your pelisse.

  7. 7
    CarrieS says:

    This has been on my TBR pile FOREVER – am so excited!

  8. 8
    GHN says:

    Loved this book when I first read it – and the follow ups are also fun. So CarrieS, nip this book right out of that TBR pile and get ready for some good, lighthearted fun!

  9. 9

    My library rarely has anything i want to read.  Mayor Bloomberg cut the funds to the libraries in Brooklyn and Queens, so we rarely get books.  As it is, only 3 libraries have this book, so I actually have to wait for it to arrive.  The November book only arrived on Thursday and I only found it because of a typo. smh. i wonder how many other books were actually in there that i didn’t see because of typos.

  10. 10
    ridiculousspider says:

    Woo!  I actually bought this last month.  I think it was mentioned in a previous post on here.  It sounds awesome.  Can’t wait to read it.

  11. 11
    snarkhunter says:

    I love this book SO MUCH.

  12. 12
    Lostshadows says:

    :D I added that to my tbr pile a few months ago.

  13. 13
    Pheebers says:

    Can All Romance books be read on a kindle?

  14. 14

    I just finished reading Sorcery and Cecelia, and I loved it. I’m excited for the chat!

  15. 15

    Yes, you can read All Romance books on your Kindle. You just have to buy them in Kindle format and then transfer them to your reader via USB. The extra pain-in-the-ass steps are the reason I almost always end up buying the books from Amazon. If you have a Kindle Fire, though, you can download the books from AR as PDFs and open them without any trouble.

  16. 16

    That’s super exciting! This was one of the first books which got me into Victorian romances and it’s so good! I had the fortune of hearing Patricia Wrede speak at the National Book Festival several years ago and she was superb.

  17. 17
    Nita says:

    Super awesome! Love this book (and the sequels). For those of you that are having a hard time getting it from a library, it’s worth a buy. Really. Both authors have terrific solo work as well.

  18. 18
    jliedl says:

    Just one of my favourite books ever! What a great pick, thanks.

  19. 19
    Kathrynhowe says:

    For those of you who haven’t read the book yet, you’re in for a huge treat!  Lots of fun, romance and Regency detail.  It’s one of my top ten books of all time.

  20. 20
    M. says:

    YESSSSSSS! I adore this book! So excited to re-read it!

  21. 21
    Terrie says:

    Oh, this is lovely to see.  I remember devouring books by Patricia C. Wrede decades ago.  Her fantasy novels are romances with a light touch and I really loved them.  Perfect fun to read and strong, intelligent heroines when they weren’t always easy to find.  I see rereading in my immediate future.  This just reminds me of some of the other fantasy writers I liked: Robin McKinley for “The Hero and the Crown” and “the Blue Sword”; Diana Wynn Jones for “Fire and Hemlock”; Patrica K. McKillip for the Riddle Master of Hed trilogy (okay, not so heavy on the romance but great fantasy).  J.K. Rowling probably has some debt owed to Jones for the Chrestomanci series. 

  22. 22
    Mary says:

    I love this book! The sequels, not so much, but this is on my favorite books shelf.

  23. 23
    Heather says:

    Picked up a copy of this just this evening at the used bookstore I work at. :) Gonna try to actually read the book in time for the next discussion.

  24. 24
    henofthewoods says:

    As a resident of NYC you are still invited to get a NYPL card and they have an ebook version of the book available for download right this minute.
    Also, if you search further you will find that there are two copies in the Brooklyn central storage from 1988 plus an ebook version in Brooklyn. That isn’t as impressive as the 77 copies of Dealing with Dragons in the Queens Public Library system, but they have another few copies of the book available in the Queens Central Library Young adult section, the 2003 printing, and some branch has the 2004 printing.
    Don’t give up on the first page of results. There are 5 pages of Patricia Wrede titles in Brooklyn and 4 pages in Queens.
    They will ship the book you want to the branch you want.

  25. 25
    JaneDrew says:

    Eee! So excited to see this—I’ve loved it since forever, stalked it in used book stores for _years_ (this was before the re-release and the sequels with the spiffy matching covers), and would LOVE to hear what folks have to say.

  26. 26
    cleo says:

    Exactly.  I loaned my tattered, well loved copy to one of my best friends sometime in the early 90s and it set her off on a (long and discouraging) quest to get her own copy.  When I found out about the reprint, my first thought was that finally my friend could get her own copy – and she did.

  27. 27

    This was probably the first regency romance I ever read. LOVE :D

  28. 28
    Carrie G says:

    According to the authors, this book was a “happy accident” that developed from a writing exercise. They didn’t set out to write a book when they started this, but once finished they got together and realized they actually had a publishable book! They sent letters to each other and stayed in character, and part of the exercise was they absolutely did not know what the other had in mind with each new development, so the book went off in all sorts of interesting directions. It’s similar to the role-playing my daughters do online. They don’t know where the next person to add to the story will take the plot.

    I love Patricia C Wrede and read her JF and YA books to my kids over the years. While I enjoy Sorcery and Cecilia, Wrede’s Enchanted Forest Chronicles (Calling on Dragons, etc) will always be my favorites by her.

  29. 29
    Jazzlet says:

    I was wondering what to read, and a re-read of Sorcery & Cecelia is just fitting the bill :-)

  30. 30

    An earlier book by Stevermer, The Serpent’s Egg, set in an alt-history Elizabethan England, apparently evolved out of the same sort of writing exercise mentioned by CarrieG, though the finished product is not an epistolary novel.
    I read Sorcery and Cecelia in college, when it first came out, and really enjoyed it. Glad to see it’s been re-released, and I love the new covers, especially the second one pictured (the original was godawful.)

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