The Golden Spoon by Jessa Maxwell

Read Time:3 Minute, 31 Second

In The Golden Spoon, six bakers arrive at the Grafton estate in Vermont for the “Bake Week” competition, filmed in the childhood home of the show’s celebrated host, Betsy Martin. While Betsy is renowned as “America’s Grandmother,” she’s not as amiable off-camera. However, things take a sinister turn when the baking competition kicks off with minor sabotage, but it soon escalates to murder, with everyone becoming a suspect.

Book review of The Golden Spoon

The Golden Spoon is a novel that may not fit the classic definition of a mystery novel, but it still manages to keep readers engaged until the very end. The story is centered around a baking competition at Grafton, a Vermont estate owned by Betsy Martin, a famous baker and the show’s host. As the competition progresses, the body of one of the contestants is discovered, and everyone becomes a suspect.

One of the unique aspects of The Golden Spoon is its use of multiple point-of-view characters. Each chapter is told from the perspective of one of the eight main characters, which includes the judges and the contestants. This allows readers to get into the heads of each character and understand their motivations, which in turn helps to eliminate suspects and narrow down the possible culprits. While this may not be what one expects from a typical mystery novel, it still provides an interesting perspective and keeps readers engaged in the story.

However, the characters themselves are not the book’s strongest point. They are somewhat one-dimensional and predictable, which makes it difficult for readers to connect with them on a deeper level. The characters are too stereotypical, and at times, caricatures of their respective professions or personalities. For example, the character of Gerald, a mathematician, is reduced to a non-mathematician’s idea of what a mathematician should be, which is a bit disappointing.

Perhaps the biggest issue with The Golden Spoon is its attempt to address toxic masculinity. While this is an important issue that needs to be addressed, it feels forced and out of place in the context of the story. It almost feels like the author is trying too hard to make a statement, which detracts from the overall enjoyment of the book.

Despite this, the story itself is well-paced and engaging. The author manages to keep the tension high throughout the book, and the twist at the end is unexpected yet satisfying. However, there are a few loose ends that go unexplained, which can be frustrating for readers who crave closure in mystery novels.

Final verdict:

In conclusion, The Golden Spoon is not a traditional mystery novel, but it is still a well-written and engaging story. The use of multiple point-of-view characters provides a unique perspective, and the pacing and tension keep readers engaged until the end. However, the characters are somewhat one-dimensional, and the attempt to address toxic masculinity feels forced and out of place. Overall, The Golden Spoon is a decent read for those who enjoy baking, reading, and a good mystery, but it may not be everyone’s cup of tea.

Our Score


  • Engaging plot: Despite not being a typical mystery novel, “The Golden Spoon” has an interesting plot that will keep readers invested and curious to know what happens next.
  • Well-paced: The book is paced well, and readers won’t find themselves getting bored or losing interest in the story.
  • Unique perspective: The use of multiple point-of-view characters gives readers insight into different perspectives, adding depth to the story.


  • Not a typical mystery novel: As mentioned, “The Golden Spoon” is not a traditional mystery novel and might disappoint readers who were expecting a more typical mystery plot.
  • One-dimensional characters: While the characters are distinct from each other, they lack depth and complexity, which might make it hard for readers to become emotionally invested in them.
  • Unsatisfying ending: The book’s ending might leave some readers feeling unsatisfied, as some questions are left unanswered and the resolution might not meet their expectations.
The Golden SpoonPublisher ‏ : ‎ Atria Books (March 7, 2023)
Language ‏ : ‎ English
Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 288 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1668008009
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1668008003
Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 14.7 ounces
Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches

About Article Author

Marcus Wright

Marcus Wright is an avowed serializer and bibliophile. His perfect weekend plan is a series marathon followed by reading a good book. Optimistic by nature, he is always able to see the bright side of things.
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