Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 4 - 8Grades 4 - 8V5.435050
National Book Award nominee!

The magic of Savvy meets the complexity of When You Reach Me in this "blithe magical puzzle." --The Wall Street Journal

Told in multiple viewpoints, A Tangle of Knots is a magnificent puzzle. In a slightly magical world where everyone has a Talent, eleven-year-old Cady is an orphan with a phenomenal Talent for cake baking. But little does she know that fate has set her on a journey from the moment she was born. And her destiny leads her to a mysterious address that houses a lost luggage emporium, an old recipe, a family of children searching for their own Talents, and a Talent Thief who will alter her life forever. However, these encounters hold the key to Cady's past and how she became an orphan. If she's lucky, fate may reunite her with her long-lost parent.

Lisa Graff adds a pinch of magic to a sharply crafted plot to create a novel that will have readers wondering about fate and the way we're all connected.


"Lisa Graff has created a beautiful world of deliciously interconnected stories that draw you in." --Abby West, Entertainment Weekly [A-]

* "Subtle and intricate, rich with humor and insight, this quietly magical adventure delights." --Kirkus Reviews, starred review

* "Combining the literary sensibility of E. B. White with the insouciance of Louis Sachar, Graff has written a tangle that should satisfy readers for years to come." --Booklist, starred review

"Graff’s story has a warmth and gentle humor that, along with the premise, calls to mind Ingrid Law’s Savvy." --Publishers Weekly
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published on February 5, 2013 by Philomel Books
ISBN-10: 0399255176
ISBN-13: 9780399255175
15 Book Reviews
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  • applemango
    applemangoSaturday, December 29, 2018 at 2:52 pm55 stars
    This book is about a girl who is an orphan and she has the power to bake cakes and find out which person likes which flavor and depending on their mood the flavor changes. There is a man who steals talents and he has a person below him working for him. That's when the twists start to really knot....
    • bookstory13
      bookstory13Saturday, July 14, 2018 at 6:13 pm44 stars
      A Tangle of Knots is sweet, touching, but also kind of boring. I think it was really good in the beginning but toward the middle nothing seemed to happen. People in A Tangle of Knots have Talents, which means they are really good at something. But the talents are weird, or not useful. I really liked the Talent that was Cady's, though, because it sounded delicious! She could make the perfect cake for anyone and when they tasted it it was a bite of heaven! MMMM! :P Cady is the main character. She's an orphan from Madagascar and got send to her current orphanage because the one she used to be at burned down. She's worried a lot of the time if her family that she gets sent to will not be her perfect family. The antagonist is a guy named the Owner, which is cool because most of the book you don't know his name so it is suspenseful. The Owner's talent is stealing and storing other people's Talents. He causes lots of trouble! There are good messages though, like be proud of who you are, don't be afraid of something you have never done, and accept what you can't change! --BKS
      • bookqueen1o13
        bookqueen1o13Monday, December 5, 2016 at 1:45 pm33 stars
        this wasnt the best book but it wasnt the worst. it was not showing any emotion it was most of the time bland its got to many peoples perspectives. so by the time i got from one chapter i got confused on what was happening. i thought it had a good story line if the author would make it more...lets say emotional.
        • memoiloveit
          memoiloveitMonday, May 30, 2016 at 5:47 pm
          I think this book is fair because talents are important. If the protagonist, Cadence, didn’t have Ms. Mallory to take care of her at the orphanage, she never would have found her real dad. The antagonist, the owner of the Lost Luggage Emporium, makes the story interesting because he tries to steal talents. The author always writes, “...grinned a sideways sort of grin. It was a grin that suggested he knew more about the world than he was letting on,” when the large man in the gray suit meets every main character, which is how he is the most important. I don’t like that he wasn’t mentioned a lot in the story because he united the main characters together with a powder-blue suitcase and gave good advice.
          • mrupp
            mruppThursday, March 24, 2016 at 9:03 am22 stars
            It was OK. I did not finish it, because it just did not get exciting at the beginning. I tried seeing if it would catch up, but it did not. If you can get past the beginning, tell me if it gets better.
            • penguin313
              penguin313Wednesday, February 24, 2016 at 7:53 pm55 stars
              In this book, people are identified by their talents, and when a bunch of different people with talents cross paths, you find out there connections.
              • audreys
                audreysFriday, December 4, 2015 at 10:55 am33 stars
                I think when the little boy gets lost its a hole new adventure.
                • catsrule
                  catsruleSunday, October 25, 2015 at 6:21 pm44 stars
                  This book was good but it was kind of confusing.
                  • demosthenes
                    demosthenesSaturday, October 24, 2015 at 1:46 pm
                    this was good but sort of slow...
                    • avdreader
                      avdreaderFriday, June 19, 2015 at 8:29 pm
                      This book was kind of confusing and changed perspective too much. First, I'm reading from Cady's perspective and on the next chapter, I'm reading form Toby's perspective. I wish they could only be from one person's perspective.