"Some things could only be found in Sidwell it seemed: pink apples, black owls, and my brother, James."
Twelve-year-old Twig's town in the Berkshires is said to hide a winged beast, the Monster of Sidwell, and the rumors draw as many tourists as the town's famed pink apple orchards. Twig lives in the orchard with her mysterious brother James and her reclusive mother, a baker of irresistible apple pies. Because of a family secret, an ancient curse,Twig has had to isolate herself from other kids. Then a family with two girls, Julia and Agate, moves into the cottage next door. They are descendants of the witch who put the spell on Twig's family. But Julia turns out to be Twig's first true friend, and her ally in trying to undo the curse and smooth the path to true love for Agate and James. @goodreads
I thought this book was soooooo good.
Twig and her brother James live with their mom. She owns an orchard that has pink apples.
She makes pies, pink cider, cupcakes etc. I want some of each at this moment right now! :)
Twig's mom left their dad, left the city and doesn't go out with anyone or have people over. Poor Twig doesn't have any friends either. You see years ago there was a curse put on Twig's family by a witch (Agnes Early) who's heart was broken by one of their descendants. This wasn't intentional by him, it happened to be a war thing. Anyhoo, Agnes put a curse on the family. Here is said curse:
The men of the Fowler family have carried the same curse ever since Agnes Early put a spell on the one she was meant to marry. That man was my four-times-great-grandfather Lowell.
What he did to hurt her so, I didn't know, but I knew the effects on our family. This is the secret we kept, which divided us from all others. Agnes Early set her spell to work, and ever since, the men in our family have had wings.
Yes, the men all have wings. Twig's brother James has wings. He's smart as a whip and has taken online courses and could go to any college, but can't leave the house... only he does leave.. he flies in the night..
There is also someone going around leaving graffiti all over town and on rocks in the woods saying: DON'T TAKE OUR HOME AWAY! They have some rare black Saw-Whet Owls in the woods and some of the jerks in the town want to cut down said woods for crap no one needs. I'm not sure if there are really black saw-whet owls but here is a picture of a cute one in real life :)
Some new people move into the house next door where the witch lived many years ago. There are two girls named Julia and Agate. They become friends with Twig even though her mom doesn't want that to happen. The whole family is really nice right down to their collie :) They happen to be descendants of Agnes.. oops.
They eventually all help Twig find a cure for the curse, help the owls, find out what happened to the witch, and a few other things... but... I'm not telling you any of that.
This was a great story and I'm so glad I took the time to read it. The author also put a surprise recipe of Pink Apple Pie in the back of the book so I'm going to add it here, I hope you enjoy and if anyone makes the pie.. I want a piece brought to my house :)
PINK APPLE PIE
1-1/2 cups flour
3/4 cup butter
1/4 cup sugar
4-1/2 tablespoons cold water
You can also use two premade 9-inch crusts bought at the market. Or see below for crumble-top variation
6 to 8 medium apples
1 cup seedless strawberry jam
3 tablespoons seedless raspberry jam
MAKING THE PASTRY:
Preheat oven to 375. Butter a nine-inch pie plate.
Sift flour into the bowl. Mix in butter (with your fingers!), smooshing it into the flour. Add sugar and mix. Add cold water a little at a time (you may not need it all). Mix until it forms a dough.
Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill in fridge for 20 minutes.
Remove dough from the fridge. Let stand at room temperature for a few minutes if necessary until slightly softened.
Divide pastry into two balls and roll out with rolling pin. Put one crust into the pie plate and form to the plate's size. Save the second for the top of the pie.
MAKING THE FILLING:
Peel, core and slice apples. Mix in strawberry jam and place the apple/jam mixture in pastry in pie plate. Dollop with spoonfuls of raspberry jam.
Cover the apple mixture with second pastry crust. Pinch crusts together with wet fingers around the sides.
Pierce top of pie with fork (you can make a design if you'd like) to release air as it bakes.
Bake for approximately 40 mins at 375.
*VARIATION CRUMBLE TOPPING*
If using this topping, make half the pastry recipe above (3/4 cup flour, 6 tablespoons butter, 2 tablespoons sugar, 2-1/4 tablespoons cold water). This will make one crust. Fill the crust as above, then add topping.
1 cup flour
1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
Mix the flour with cut-up butter (with your fingers!) until it forms crumbs. Add sugar and mix. Sprinkle on top of pie.
Bake for approximately 40 mins at 375.
AMAZON LINK TO THE BOOK: