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Mr. Putter & Tabby Bake the Cake Paperback – November 30, 1994


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 3-Mr. Putter is determined to bake a cake for his neighbor, Mrs. Teaberry, for Christmas. He wants it to be completely unlike the fruitcakes she usually eats during the holidays-"Something light. Something airy. Something that would not break a person's toe." Readers will discover that this is no easy undertaking since he has no pans, has never baked from scratch, and has no cookbook. This low-key holiday story focuses on the loving care that many gifts lack. Young cooks will empathize with Mr. Putter's failures and be encouraged by his persistence and eventual success. The tale's combination of concern and humor is further enhanced by the appealing pencil, watercolor, and gouache cartoons. Though this title is not as enchanting as the first two "Mr. Putter and Tabby" adventures (both Harcourt, 1994), it belongs in most beginning-to-read collections.
Gale W. Sherman, Pocatello Public Library, ID
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Gr. 1-3. Mr. Putter and Tabby continue to enjoy their twilight years together in a read-alone that combines simple, lyrical writing and gentle humor. This time out, it's the holiday season. Concerned that his neighbor, Mrs. Teaberry, devours so much heavy fruitcake, Mr. Putter decides to bake her "a light and airy" cake. After several mishaps, with Tabby at his side he finally delivers a beautiful cake on Christmas morning--then promptly falls asleep in Mrs. Teaberry's chair. Howard's relaxed, mixed-media pictures catch the nuances of the cozy, affectionate relationship between an old man and a cat with all the right moves. Julie Corsaro --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 6 - 9 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 4
  • Lexile Measure: 500L (What's this?)
  • Series: Mr. Putter & Tabby
  • Paperback: 44 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; First Edition, First Printing edition (November 30, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0152002146
  • ISBN-13: 978-0152002145
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.2 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #47,477 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Cynthia Rylant is the author of numerous distinguished novels and picture books for young readers. In addition to her beginning-reader series: Henry and Mudge, Poppleton, and Mr. Putter and Tabby, as well as her Cobble Street Cousins early-chapter series, she is also the author of the Newbery Medal-winning Missing May, the Newbery Honor Book A Fine White Dust, and two Caldecott Honor-winning picture books.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Melissa Santiago on December 7, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This is such a wonderful book. Christmas is coming and Mr. Putter is trying to choose a gift for Mrs. Teaberry. She likes such strange things including fruitcake (which, Mr. Putter notes, "could break her toe if she dropped it."). Mr. Putter sets out to bake Mrs. Teaberry a "light and airy" cake for Christmas, but baking isn't as easy as it seems! Mr. Putter and Tabby end up spending a fortune just for the supplies and it takes several tries (and a long night) to make just the right cake. After staying up all night baking, Mr. Putter falls asleep right after Mrs. Teaberry receives her present. She, of course, chooses to wait until he awakens before she tries it. My son and I both love all the Mr. Putter and Tabby books and this book is one of our two favorites (the other being "Pick the Pears"). I never get tired of reading this one and my son never gets tired of hearing it! I can't wait until he can read it to me. This book is also good at Christmastime.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By "alleah" on July 29, 2002
Format: Paperback
The Mr. Putter and Tabby series are the sort of books that I would have loved to have when I was a beginning reader. I know that I would have read them over and over again to no end, even once they began to fall apart from constant use. That's why I am so glad that Mr. Putter and Tabby are around now while my youngest brother is learning to read. The non-repetitious (words are repeated, but not enough to become explicit), non-rhyming storytelling contained within the books makes them a pleasure to read continually, unlike many other easy-reader books. And in my opinion, the Mr. Putter and Tabby books are a step in front of Ms. Rylant's Henry and Mudge collection, due to the fact that, in their own way, they create an appreciation for the elderly as the reader comes to love Mr. Putter, the aging main character whose only companion is his cat, Tabby.
In Mr. Putter and Tabby Bake the Cake, Christmas is soon approaching, and Mr. Putter must decide what to give Mrs. Teaberry, his fruit-cake-loving next-door neighbor. Mr. Putter does not understand how anyone could enjoy a fruit cake, and so he sets out to make Mrs. Teaberry a "light and airy" cake for Christmas, one that "could not break her toe if she dropped it." Young readers will follow along with Mr. Putter and his good cat Tabby as they try to make Mrs. Teaberry's cake, from start to finish. Mishap prevails, leaving you to wonder if they will ever get through in time. It all adds up to a cheery Christmas story about giving and the saying, "It's the thought that counts!"
Mr. Howard's cartoon-style illustrations greatly enhance this wonderful story, which is written in such a format to be used as either a 3-chapter book for the beginning reader, or a bedtime story that is longer in length. Either way, the Mr. Putter and Tabby books would be a great find for emerging readers' shelves. Like having a kindly old grandpa next door, they only make life richer!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 9, 2000
Format: Paperback
A delightful Christmas story that emphasizes giving of oneself and pokes a little fun at commercialism. Mr. Putter is as "light and airy" (or light and HAIRY as my five-year-old points out in chapter 4) as ever. Mr. Putter teaches us that we are never too old to learn!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By kennedy19 on November 27, 2002
Format: Paperback
This is another winner from the "Mr. Putter and Tabby" series. Old Mr. Putter and his old cat like to sit and watch the snow, but they must act soon if they want to think of something to give their nice neighbor, Mrs. Teaberry, for Christmas. Knowing her unlikely fondness for fruitcake, the intrepid pair decide to bake her one that wouldn't "break her toe if she dropped it." After much ado, they finally succeed in their effort, and fall asleep on Christmas morning in Mrs. Teaberry's house, having just delivered the cake. In the end, Mr. Putter goes home with "a very nice toaster that sang 'America the Beautiful' when the bread popped up." This gentle, subtle humor runs throughout the book and goes well with the colorful, expressive illustrations. Mr. Putter's persistence in trying to bake a cake is admirable. Furthermore, like many good Christmas books, this one shows the importance of giving. A fine book for kids who are just beginning to read.
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Format: Paperback
Mr. Putter loves giving presents at Christmas time but although he starts planning in July it always takes him until December to decide what to give his neighbor and friend, Mrs. Teaberry. He knows that she likes salt shakers that walk, dresses for her teapots etc. What he can't believe is that she actually likes fruitcake! SO he decides that this Christmas she needs a "light and airy cake". Only one problem! Mr. Putter doesn't know how to bake a cake nor does he have any of the equipment.

Mr. Putter and Tabby, his cat, go to visit Mary Sue, the owner of the Sweet Shop. Mary Sue gladly helps him purchase all that he needs and so on Christmas Eve we see Mr. Putter baking the cake. How many times will it take him before he succeeds? What will Mrs. Teabody think of his gift? What happens on Christmas Day?

This is a delightful, well-written and beautifully illustrated book which is one of our young son's favorites. Just adorable! Highly recommended!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Another sweet and funny story from Cynthia Rylant! My children (ages 7 and 8) love Mr. Putter & Tabby, but I think parents enjoy these books just as much! In this story, Mr. Putter navigates baking for the first time, with the goal of giving a Christmas cake to his friend Mrs. Teaberry. Mr. Putter embodies perseverance and the spirit of giving in this book! While the holiday figures into the story, my kids enjoy the book year-round. Perfect for a child just entering chapter books.
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