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Sorcery & Cecelia: or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot (Cecelia and Kate #1)

4.01  ·  Rating Details ·  15,331 Ratings  ·  1,717 Reviews
A great deal is happening in London and the country this season.

For starters, there's the witch who tried to poison Kate at the Royal College of Wizards. There's also the man who seems to be spying on Cecelia. (Though he's not doing a very good job of it--so just what are his intentions?) And then there's Oliver. Ever since he was turned into a tree, he hasn't bothered to
Paperback, 326 pages
Published 2004 by Harcourt (first published April 15th 1988)
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Gail Carriger
One of my all time favorite books, Sorcery and Cecelia started out as a letter game between two brilliant writers. The authors clearly enjoyed themselves and the resulting novel is a joy to read, both as a story and as a window into the fun experienced by to marvelous authors.

Set in Austen-like 1817 England, which just happens to have some very polite magic rolling around, the plot is largely driven by excellent characterization, two strong heroines, and a great deal of humor. There are several
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
A magical marquis, his suspicious friend, and a pair of strong-willed and mischievous young ladies get entangled in Regency-era England. Their story is told entirely in epistolary form, as lifelong friends Kate and Cecilia exchange letters. Kate is experiencing her first Season in London, while Cecy is left home in the country. But life gets unexpectedly complicated when both Kate and Cecy meet up with Thomas (aka the Mysterious Marquis) and his friend James, who are trying to stop a dark magica ...more
A perfectly charming little epistolary tale with a number of problems. This is the story of Kate and Cecelia (does this spelling of the name bother anyone else? I had to type that name three times before I got it right, it seem so unnatural!) two cousins who are seperated for a few months while one experiences the London Season, and the other stays on their country estate, and write letters back and forth to each other. Kate falls into the path of an evil magician, Cecelia trips over related mag ...more
Jan 18, 2017 Tijana added it
Ljubića smeštenih u period Regentstva ima kao partizanskih filmova; fentezi ljubića koji se dešavaju u tom periodu ima... malčice manje.
Sorcery & Cecelia: or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot je sve što mu ime kaže. Imamo dve klinke rođake koje se dopisuju na relaciji provincija-London, zle čarobnjake, dobre čarobnjake, seksi čarobnjake, začarane ibrike za kakao (od plavog porcelana, moliću) i začarane burmutice, dosta humora, balove i haljine na kilo (mnogo haljina. Shvatite me ozbiljno. I rukavi
I quite enjoyed this book! It's a little bit mystery, a little bit fantasy, there's a little magic and a little romance, all set in the early 1800's England.

The story takes place around cousins Cecelia and Kate, one goes to London for the summer, the other remains in the country. Their correspondence begins ordinarily enough (what tea party had been attended, or the trouble with hand-me-down dresses), but you get a sense very early on that Cecelia and Kate are kindred spirits and that there's mo
May 12, 2007 Emma rated it it was amazing
Patricia C. Wrede and Caroline Stevermer first published Sorcery and Cecelia under that that title in 1988. In recent years, thanks to reprints with shiny new cover art by Scott M. Fischer in the case of the edition I read as well as two new sequels, this book has regained popularity and visibility. Aside from that, one of the most important things to know about this book is its alternate title: The Enchanted Chocolate Pot: Being the Correspondence of Two Young Ladies of Quality Regarding Variou ...more
Apr 07, 2008 Rebecca rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 08, 2011 Carol. rated it liked it
Recommends it for: readers interested in young adult/ magic/ historical fiction
Bit of a slog at the beginning, which is likely due to my own problems with the story structure. It begins as exchanged letters between two teenage girls, seemingly Victorian era. I can see how this would be attractive to collaborating authors, and fans of letter writing everywhere, but I always have trouble wrapping my head around that kind of narrative. Once it gets going, it gets a little better. The authors do a decent jobs of within-letter asides that help explain things, but it's clearly b ...more
Sep 11, 2008 Kathryn rated it really liked it
When Cecy is forced to stay behind in the countryside when her cousin (and dearest friend) Kate goes to London for all the parties and social connections of the season, a correspondence ensues to keep one another informed of all the delicious goings-on of friends and family members, fashion trends and the like. However, they are also intelligent young women and soon the plot begins to thicken as two seemingly unrelated "suspicious incidents" involving maddening-yet-charming young men and bouts o ...more
I first read this book a bajillion (okay, fifteen) years ago and remembered nothing about it (which makes sense, since I was like nine). When I found this hiding on my shelves, I decided to give it another visit, since I was in a terrible slump, and OMG I cannot recomment this DELIGHTFUL little treat of a book more. It's Regency fun with ADDED MAGIC and hilarious, wonderful narrators. Kate and Cecelia, cousins and best friends, exchange letters in an alternate 1817 England where young men run th ...more
Apr 05, 2017 Alexa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a delightful novel! I thoroughly enjoyed getting stuck in Cecy & Kate's story, which was a combination of magic and whimsy and friendship and romance. It did take me a little time to properly warm up to the epistolary style (as I don't read stories like that often), but it was definitely a story I was fully invested in by the end.
Aug 07, 2008 Amy rated it really liked it
Shelves: regency, read-in-2009
As the title states, this is a book of letters between two young ladies in England in the post-Napoleonic war era. In many ways, it reads like a 'typical' regency romance novel. Two young girls are corresponding; one is in London for the season, the other has been deemed too immature and likely to get in trouble and so remains on the country estate. The letters are filled with descriptions of items of clothing, dance, and people typical of that era.

The twist is the inclusion of magic. In this wo
Jul 28, 2011 Lindsey rated it it was amazing
I first read this book as a teenager after searching out basically anything and everything of Patrica Wrede's (her Enchanted Forest Chronicles series basically represents my entire middle school reading experience considering how many times I've re-read it...). I was in love with it from the get-go; a novel written entirely in letters between two deviously smart and witty cousins trying to keep themselves and their odiously enigmatic love interests safe from certain disaster at the hands of witc ...more
Nope. Officially bailed on this one. Read to about 50% and was forcing myself to read further every time I picked it up. The only interesting thing that happened was very early where Kate (or was it Cecelia? They are basically the same) one of the writing protagonists, stumbles into a strange room where a wizard tries to kill her with poisoned chocolate thinking she was someone in disguise. Ok great. Nothing else happens.

I loved the premise and the letter writing 2 authors but there was no meat
Jun 09, 2007 Punk rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult, fantasy
YA Fiction. I had a lot of trouble getting past the first three pages of this -- it was exposition heavy and did not grab my attention -- but once I gave it another shot, I found it utterly charming. Cousins Cecelia and Kate write each other letters during the summer of 1817, while Kate is in London for the Season and Cecelia is stuck at home in the country. This is another of those Englands that just has magic lying around to spare, no big thing, it's just there, good for fighting off Napoleon ...more
Dec 13, 2015 Amy rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Future Georgette Heyer Lovers, and lovers of Howl's Moving Castle
Recommended to Amy by: Elevetha
Delicious. Witty, unpredictable, and very fun. I meant to read only a few chapters before going to bed, but ended up reading the entire thing in one sitting. I love the epistolary style, Regency feel, and twisting plot (with adorable romance thrown in for good measure). It is one of those books that would have garnered a 5 star review from me a few years earlier, but a few things bugged me.
Such as, all the Regency slang thrown about. It was goofy and delightful but kept me from taking anything
Jan 12, 2008 Karene rated it liked it
I enjoyed this book. It's light and entertaining enough to be worth reading despite a few major flaws. To anyone who picks up this book, I would suggest first reading the "Afterword" at the end of the book (it really should have been a "Foreword"). It explains how the book came to be, doesn't contain any plot spoilers, and I think had I read the book with that knowledge I might have enjoyed it even more. My main complaints were, first, that the language in the book is a little too contrived. The ...more
Jul 16, 2008 Becky rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Becky by: Heather
Elisabeth Bennet meets Harry Potter. Well, sort of. I loved, loved, loved this Jane Austen-esque novel that follows the format of letters written between two cousins. Actually, that is how the book was originally written. The two authors adopted the personas and wrote letters to each other, creating the story.

Being Jane Austen-esque, it is of course a romance with much attention paid to social etiquettes and proprieties (and improprieties). However, the magic is largely the intrigue that is thro
Mar 03, 2014 Jess rated it it was amazing

1) Regency
2) Magic
3) Epistolary
4) Romance

Forever bitter that I couldn't move this ahead. THANKS A LOT, MIREILLE.
I wonder what's so natural about the pairing of Jane Austen-esque Regency romantic comedy and magic -- because this book reminded me incredibly of Mary Robinette Kowal's Shades of Milk and Honey, or a lighter/fluffier Susanna Clarke. (In fact, I might follow this up with my long-awaited JS&MN reread, maybe?) Or even Gail Carriger's Soulless, though that one's in the Victorian era; also an appropriate comparison, considering I noticed on GR just now that Carriger cites this as one of her favo ...more
Jun 04, 2007 thefourthvine rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens-teen, sff
This book was pretty much made for me. I love epistolary novels (and had played the letter game before reading this), I love light-hearted, humorous stories, I love SF/F, and I love the Regency period.

There are problems with the book, of course - the letter game doesn't make for a perfect novel structure, though I was stunned at how well the two authors here managed to pull it off. And the plot is definitely a bit light. But the voices are delightful and top-notch, and the book is a just a real
Jackie "the Librarian"
Georgette Heyer meets Harry Potter! And it's an epistolary novel!! A little hard to follow - I had trouble keeping the characters straight and could have used a bit more descriptions, but still a lot of fun.
Sadly, its sequel, The Grand Tour is awful, as the girls play passive roles, and merely report on the actions of their husbands as they travel through Europe.
Cute, interesting, fast read. Really fun epistolary novel (written as letters between two friends). I somehow missed posting 2016 reading dates for this.
Jun 18, 2014 Jen rated it it was amazing
During a gap in my NetGalley reads, I was looking for an interim book and happened on Sorcery & Cecelia or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot: Being the correspondence of two Young Ladies of Quality regarding various Magical Scandals in London and the Country. I liked the cover, and the blurb mentioned The Royal College of Wizards, so I ordered it.

And did it ever surpass my expectations! Set in Regency England, the book is a comedy of manners, a paranormal fantasy, an epistolary novel, and an absol
Jane Stewart
Liked the plot. Liked the characters and their capers. But I had a problem with the epistolary method. This could have been a really neat novel if written in the traditional way. As it was, I wanted it to be over.

The entire book consists of letters between Cecy and Kate - an epistolary novel. Therefore most things are “told” not shown, but that is the nature of letters. Each letter has a chatty or gossipy feel talking about clothes, family, friends, and neighbors. The letters also
Dec 15, 2008 Michelle rated it it was amazing
I stumbled across this book on the bookmobile and absolutely loved it. The entire book is written in letters. there are actually two writers and they each took a character and built the book by reacting to what the other wrote. I think it started as a game.

It's period piece (the content of the letters made me think of Jane Austin with the balls and social gatherings) set in an alternative England where magic is a common part of society. One of the girls, Kate, goes to town for the season and wr
Shawn Thrasher
Oct 22, 2013 Shawn Thrasher rated it it was amazing
In the parallel universe where I'm a writer of fantasy fiction, I hope all the books that I write are almost as good as Sorcery and Cecelia. I say "almost" because nothing I could write in any universe can possible surpass this, one of my favorite books of all time. I'm not an expert, but I am going to guess that when this book was first published in 1988, it was delightfully unique. Alternate history, with magic, and epistolary fiction on top of that. All of this has been done since, some of th ...more
Originally read: So, so many years ago!
Number of times read: Too many to count!!

One of my favorite books of all time. I love this book so hard. It's the perfect blend of all of my favorite genres: Regency England, romance, magic, mystery, sassy/strong heroines. This book is EVERYTHING. It completes me.

I first read the book when I was a freshman in high school. It was out of print at the time (and before ebay/amazon/buying all the things online) so I used to check out my local public library's c
This was a fun, fluffy read. It's just what I needed after 4 months of epic epic-ness of my Wheel of Time marathon. Something light, not too deep, but entertaining. It's a Young Adult Regency with a splash or two of magic and a little bit of danger, written in the form of letters between two cousins. Predictable yet enjoyable, especially if you need a break from heavier reading and if you enjoy both Fantasy and Regency historical romance.
Jan 30, 2016 Josiphine rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: people who like Newt's Emerald
Recommended to Josiphine by: Elevetha
Shelves: jolly-good
I was somewhat put off by this just at the start because I do not usually enjoy epistolary novels, but this one was the exception because it was really good! I loved the characters and the setting (and the magic) and I actually think that letters were the perfect format for this. Also magic and Regency England is A++.
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Patricia Collins Wrede was born in Chicago, Illinois and is the eldest of five children. She started writing in seventh grade. She attended Carleton College in Minnesota, where she majored in Biology and managed to avoid taking any English courses at all. She began work on her first novel, Shadow Magic, just after graduating from college in 1974. She finished it five years later and started her se ...more
More about Patricia C. Wrede...

Other Books in the Series

Cecelia and Kate (4 books)
  • The Grand Tour (Cecilia and Kate, #2)
  • The Mislaid Magician: or Ten Years After (Cecelia and Kate, #3)
  • Magic Below Stairs

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“How be caught up in a game and have no idea of the rules.” 154 likes
“In short, if we wish to see anything sensible done about the situation, we will clearly have to do it ourselves.” 39 likes
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