Skip to main content
Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
The Search for Delicious

The Search for Delicious

Natalie Babbitt; Illustrated by the author

Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)

BUY THE BOOK

Gaylen, the King's messenger, a skinny boy of twelve, is off to poll the kingdom, traveling from town to farmstead to town on his horse, Marrow. At first it is merely a question of disagreement at the royal castle over which food should stand for Delicious in the new dictionary. But soon it seems that the search for Delicious had better succeed if civil war is to be avoided.

Gaylen's quest leads him to the woldweller, a wise, 900-year-old creature who lives alone at the precise center of the forest; to Canto, the minstrel who sings him an old song about a mermaid child and who gives him a peculiar good-luck charm; to the underground domain of the dwarfs; and finally to Ardis who might save the kingdom from havoc.

The Search for Delicious is a 1969 New York Times Book Review Notable Children's Book of the Year.

NYTBR Notable Children's BOTY, Horn Book Magazine Fanfare List, New York Times Book Review Notable Children's Books of the Year

Search for Delicious


In his workroom at the top of the tower, DeCree, the Prime Minister, was pacing up and down. Occasionally he would pause, throw up his arms in a gesture of helplessness, and then resume his pacing. From her...

Praise for The Search for Delicious

“Spirited and humorous, sensitive without ever being sad.” —The New York Times Book Review

“Fantasy-adventure that's as fresh and sparkling as spring water. It's truly delicious.” —The New York Times

“The writing is distinguished by an immediate clarity and true poetry. . . . A wholly delightful story.” —The Horn Book Magazine

“The definition of this well-constructed story, combining fine imagery, humor, strong characterizations, legend, and an unobtrusive theme of good versus evil is: a good book for children hungry for light entertainment.” —School Library Journal, Starred Review

“Here is a beguiling tale, here is a story perfectly suited for reading in the still of an endless summer twilight.” —Publishers Weekly

“Fresh and imaginative, this play on words and on human foibles is a welcome and happy book.” —Cleveland Plain Dealer

“A made-up fairy tale that works. . . . This one is for kids who thrive on the discovery of new words.” —McCall's

-

Reviews from Goodreads

Natalie Babbitt; Illustrated by the author

Artist and writer Natalie Babbitt (1932–2016) is the award-winning author of the modern classic Tuck Everlasting and many other brilliantly original books for young people. As the mother of three small children, she began her career in 1966 by illustrating The Forty-Ninth Magician, written by her husband, Samuel Babbitt. She soon tried her own hand at writing, publishing two picture books in verse. Her first novel, TheSearch for Delicious, was published in 1969 and established her reputation for creating magical tales with profound meaning. Kneeknock Rise earned Babbitt a Newbery Honor in 1971, and she went on to write—and often illustrate—many more picture books, story collections,and novels. She also illustrated the five volumes in the Small Poems series by Valerie Worth. In 2002, Tuck Everlasting was adapted into a major motion picture, and in 2016 a musical version premiered on Broadway. Born and raised in Ohio, Natalie Babbitt lived her adult life in the Northeast.

image of Natalie Babbitto

Natalie Babbitt

Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)

Latest on Facebook

LATEST ON TWITTER