Doughnuts and Doom (With Preview)
Doughnuts and Doom is one of those modern fantasies for which I’m still looking for a good genre name. You know the kind… Young people work in a coffee shop — but they’re werewolves! Or they work at a call center — but they’re also on a fantasy quest! Or they’re looking to find a purpose in life now that they’re out of school — but they’re also witches! Or they throw a college party — but they’re fairies!
It’s a fascinating blend of young adult concerns, feeling out of place and not yet settled, looking for love and trying to find a profession (not just a job), but layered over with magic and mythical creatures. I was calling them “hipster fantasy” but “hipster” has an unintended negative connotation. Maybe “young urban magic”, or yum? (No, that’s terrible.)
Anyway, as created by Balazs Lorinczi, Margot Grapes runs a potion shop while trying (and failing) to pass her witch license test. (She also has a Muppet-y extended triangle nose, which is cute.) Her familiar is an adorable snake named Stanley.
Elena works at the doughnut shop where Margot goes for treats. She’s also a guitarist. Their meeting has unforeseen results when some magic goes rogue.
The blue tinting makes the story feel rather dreamlike to me, but when magic occurs, it flares baby pink for contrast. They’re a cute couple, and it’s fun seeing them get to know each other. I also liked seeing them support and encourage each other.
There are two major questions raised by the story left unanswered, unfortunately. One can be assumed, but I did wonder what the cause of the vendetta against Margot was. As a result, I found this a slight read, enjoyable enough in the moment, but not particularly memorable. Rather like the doughnuts in the title.
Here’s a preview of the first few pages.
(The publisher provided the preview and a digital review copy.)