Book Review: Toads and Diamonds by Heather Tomlinson

Rating: 3.7 out of 5 stars

Genre: Fiction

Age Recommended: 11 and up


Toads and Diamonds is an unusual book full of folklore. The author has woven together an amazing story of courage and survival.

Diribani is a girl from a small village. She is going to the well one day, when she meets a goddess. The goddess blesses Diribani so that whenever she speaks, precious jewels and flowers fall from her mouth.

When Diribani comes home from the well, her step-mother and step-sister, Tana, are astounded by her gift. Soon after though, Diribani’s step-mother starts to panic because if Diribani is found to have such a gift, many people would want to kidnap her.

Tana goes to the well later in the day, and meets the same goddess. However, this time, the goddess blesses Tana in a unique way. Toads and snakes fall from her mouth whenever she speaks.

The two sisters go to see a festival where the king is present and in front of him, they accidentally speak. Diribani is taken in by the prince’s court but Tana is hunted like a dog.

The king is kind to Diribani but in the eyes of the king’s advisor, Diribani and Tana are both witches. Diribani convinces the king’s court that she can be of some help, and every jewel that falls from her mouth is sold or kept in the treasury.

Meanwhile, Tana is still running for her life and staying wherever she can along the way. One day soon after, Diribani is wandering in the palace during the night when the king’s advisor kidnaps her and takes her away.

Will Diribani be able to escape from the clutches of the king’s advisor and find her step-sister again?


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