Good Life

State College author Chet Gottfried tames ‘Cursed City’ with just desserts

Writing a story about ice cream, curses and fantastical creatures may seem like a challenge, but State College resident Chet Gottfried has done just that with his latest book.

“Einar and the Cursed City,” Gottfried’s second young adult novel published this year, tells the story of a young man who sets out to win a dueling competition but becomes involved in a dangerous quest to save a city.

That part of the story revolves around dessert is just one of several elements that Gottfried hopes will appeal to readers of all ages.

Gottfried said others include “my manner of writing, in which each chapter ends on a question to encourage further reading, in other words, suspense. Third, there is the humor of the whole situation. Since reading is a form of relaxation, the ability to laugh at the world is important. Fourth, the larger dangers are bypassed without relying on gore or shock. A person should feel better after reading a novel, and I believe Einar meets that goal.”

When Gottfried and his wife moved to State College from Long Island, N.Y., almost a decade ago, they originally had plans to relocate to Utah after only a year.

“While living here, Sue and I fell in love with State College and have remained ever since then,” Gottfried said.

While the majority of his published works, including several short stories and two books, were written during his time in State College, Gottfried has been writing fiction for most of his life. Although he has dabbled in other genres, fantasy in particular appeals to Gottfried because, “anything can happen. Of course, it helps if there is a sense of logic behind any particular event, but that is not absolutely necessary. A story may feature mythic beasts and ice cream. It’s the best of all worlds.”

“Einar and the Cursed City,” along with Gottfried’s other recent novel, “The Gilded Basilisk,” can be purchased from ReAnimus Press or Amazon. Both are available digitally and in paperback. Readers looking for more of Gottfried’s works can visit his website, Gottfried also promises that some new books are being planned.

“At present, I’m working on a science fiction novel, which is another exploration of humor, as well as a sequel to Einar.”

For more information about Gottfried and his young adult novels, visit or