Egg and Spoon (Paperback)

By Gregory Maguire

Candlewick Press (MA), 9780763680169, 496pp.

Publication Date: August 4, 2015



"A beautiful reminder that fairy tales are at their best when they illuminate the precarious balance between lighthearted childhood and the darkness and danger of adulthood." School Library Journal(starred review)
Elena Rudina lives in the impoverished Russian countryside, and there is no food. But then a train arrives in the village, a train carrying a cornucopia of food, untold wealth, and a noble family destined to visit the Tsar in Saint Petersburg a family that includes Ekaterina, a girl of Elena's age. When the two girls lives collide, an adventure is set in motion, an escapade that includes mistaken identity, a monk locked in a tower, a prince traveling incognito, and in a starring role only Gregory Maguire could have conjured Baba Yaga, witch of Russian folklore, in her ambulatory house perched on chicken legs.

About the Author

Gregory Maguire is the author of the incredibly popular books in the Wicked Years series, including Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, which inspired the musical. He is also the author of several books for children, including What-the-Dickens, a New York Times bestseller. Gregory Maguire lives outside Boston.

Conversation Starters from

  1. As the story unfolds, the narrator reveals more and more about himself. Does your opinion of him change along the way? How trustworthy is he? How likable? Why does he risk so much for Elena?generic viagra price canada
  2. What are the major differences that divide Elena and Cat at the beginning of Egg & Spoon? By the end, what are their common bonds?generic viagra price canada
  3. The Firebird is described as the “bright soul of all the Russias” (page 4). What does that mean? How can a country have a soul? Does America have one?generic viagra price canada
  4. Great-Aunt Sophia has gone to enormous trouble and expense so that Cat can be introduced to the Tsar’s godson. Why? What does the older woman want for her niece? What does Cat want for herself?generic viagra price canada
  5. “Ambition without direction,” Peter Petrovich tells Elena (page 28), “is like milk without a cup.” What does he mean by this? Which characters in the novel prove his point? How?generic viagra price canada
  6. Russian aristocrats in this novel seem more likely to speak French than Russian. What does this suggest about their attachment to their homeland? They also tend to doubt the existence of Baba Yaga and the Firebird. Why?generic viagra price canada
  7. “I am life,” says Baba Yaga (page 144) soon after she meets Cat. What do you think she means by that? Do you agree with her? Why or why not?generic viagra price canada
  8. Baba Yaga’s wicked wit sometimes flies right over the heads of her listeners. What are some of her jokes that you caught? What are some of her zany, comic anachronisms (puns, references, or quotes from our time, not Tsarist Russia’s)? Which are your favorites? Why?generic viagra price canada
  9. “There is enough world for everyone,” says the dragon (page 386). “But everyone cries in want of more.” Do you agree? Why is it so difficult to know the difference between enough and more than enough?generic viagra price canada
  10. What is the significance of the title? Does it refer to one particular egg in this novel full of remarkable eggs? What connection does an egg have with a spoon? “Does being in possession of a spoon give you more right to the egg?” the narrator asks (page 188). What do you think?generic viagra price canada