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The Great Cake Bake Hardcover – May 1, 2005


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 1-3–A young woman enters every contest that comes her way–usually with disastrous results. Determined to win her town's Fourth of July cake bake, she tries some of her ideas out on the mayor, but her replica of the Boston Tea Party spews liquid in his face and her Statue of Liberty cake explodes when he lights the torch. On the big day of the contest, she arrives with a huge and elaborate confection that re-creates the town of old Boston, complete with a cobblestone street. Dressed as Paul Revere, she mounts a horse and gingerly guides it onto the cake. Suddenly, the animal rears and her entry, along with all of the others, goes flying into the air. The matter is resolved when the mayor announces that he and Donna Rae are to be married and next year, she'll be a judge, not a contestant in the bake-off. With detail and humor, the richly hued illustrations capture the look and feel of small-town America in a not-so-distant past. The art and the folksy telling are like a cross between a county fair and The Music Man. Children may enjoy the silliness of the pictures but are unlikely to relate to the competition, the mayor's affections for Donna Rae, or the neat and tidy resolution.–Linda M. Kenton, San Rafael Public Library, CA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Gr. 1-3. Donna Rae makes an entire riverfront out of cake, with a harbor of tea, for the Fourth of July cake bake, but when she invites the mayor over for a preview, tea splashes everywhere. Undaunted, she constructs a Statue of Liberty cake, but when the mayor lights the torch, it explodes (and singes off his mustache). Her final cake construction is of the entire town of Boston, with Donna Rae herself as Paul Revere. It comes to an even more spectacular end, but the mayor proposes to Donna Rae, ensuring that she will be judge rather than contestant the following year. This lightly amusing tale takes place in a sort of generic mid-twentieth-century small town. Vivid colors and sharp, glossy edges give a hyperrealistic aura to the art. GraceAnne DeCandido
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Kindergarten - 3
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Walker Childrens; 1st edition (May 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802789501
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802789501
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 0.3 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,384,888 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By History_of_Art_Geek on July 15, 2007
Format: Hardcover
The Great Cake Bake is Matt Collins first picture book; yet, his work surpasses many veteran artists. His illustrations are vivid and polished, shiny is probably a better word. The expressions are animated, and comical. The illustrations are funny, and beg a second look. I also love the animal antics. On nearly every spread Donna Rae's cat and bunny rabbit appear in the scenes. Her pets are either peeking from behind a post, or struggling to get a better view. It's cute, and adds to the fun.

This is my first experience with a Helen Ketteman's work, and I must say I'm impressed. Ketteman's writing is humorous without over embellishing. She's description, yet the terminology is age appropriate. The book is recommended for children 5 to 8, which I think is appropriate as it takes about 5-minutes to read aloud. The author sets the scene, grabs the reader's attention, and keeps us interested until the end. This book has accompanied my 6-year old to bed every night in the last few weeks. He adores it.
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By Melissa Sack VINE VOICE on July 6, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Donna Rae really wants to win the prize in the cake contest this year. She tries her hand a various cakes. She tests her cake out on the mayor. The first cake she bakes is a Boston Tea Party cake that end up spraying liquid all over the mayor. Then she bakes a Statue of Liberty cake that explodes when they light the torch. Her last cake is a replica of the old town of Boston. Find out the mayors plan to make sure Donna Rae is not in the contest next year!

What did you like or not like about the book?

The book is full of adventure. You never know what will happen next.

Would you recommend the book? Why or Why not?

Yes. It is a great book to read around the Fourth of July.
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By Patricia Gent on September 2, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This book's illustrations are so well done and enjoyable, with lot's of background detail. They compliment the fun, lighthearted story perfectly. A book you will never be tired of reading!
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