on February 10, 2007
This is absolutely the best piece of children's writing I've ever read. The rhyme and meter are strong and playful. Kleven teases us with internal rhymes and alliterations. My three year old and I read this all the time.
The basic story line is that, on a cloudy day, a canine baker whips up a magic sun bread recipe that brings out the sun and everyone's joy. The book does to the reader what the bread did to the characters.
My three-year-old daughter and I made the recipe on the back cover, and I have to say it's a disappointment: dry and heavy. I'd halve the butter and maybe beat the egg whites for a lighter texture, but the idea is still great. The mold for the bread is cool too, and it looks happy in the oven.
A definite must-read-to-your-kids.
on December 16, 2002
What I love best about it is the message - that happiness comes from within. The rhythm is nothing less than intoxicating and the illustrations are beautiful. I'm buying one for every child I know.
on June 16, 2001
I'm a second grade teacher whose students adore Sun Bread. The pictures are beautiful and the text is pure fun to read aloud (and chant along with!). The story also presents concepts about the sun in an eloquent and intriguing manner. "It melted all the snows away and brought the shadows out to play" is one of our favorite lines. We also love "It scattered rainbows soft and bright, [and] fed the plants with its clear light." What a charming introduction to photosynthesis! Sun Bread is a delightful, warm, and informative book. Tie it in with a lesson about the garden and breadmaking.
on November 26, 2001
"The wind it whooshed, the snow it whirled,/The rain streamed down; it sloshed and swirled/And washed the colors from the world." It's cold and dark, dank and damp, and everyone in this little village misses the sun who seems to have gone into hiding. In fact, the baker missed the sun so much, she decided to bake a "sunny feast". She worked very hard on her dough until it was just right, shaped it just so, and "it seemed the sun shone in her hands!" Soon the smell of baking bread reached the entire town and everyone hurried to the baker's house for a piece of that wonderful sun bread. "Bread so brilliant, bright, and sunny,/Summer seemed to fill their tummies./Bread so fluffy and so fine,/They felt themselves begin to shine..." The sun bread made everyone feel so good, they forgot about winter and all the bad weather, and ran back outside to dance, play, and maybe, just maybe, coax the real sun out again..... Elisa Kleven has authored a charming and entertaining story that will definitely warm you up on those cold and wet winter days. Her lilting, rhyming text is only outdone by her marvelously bold and busy collage artwork, full of wonderful, expressive animal characters, and intricate detail. Youngsters will love poring over the colorful, and engaging illustrations. Perfect for kids 3-7, Sun Bread is a lovely read-aloud picture book the entire family can enjoy together, and includes an easy to follow recipe on the back cover, so that you can make and eat your own Sun Bread. "This bread, alas, won't make you fly. But it is heavenly - light and high!"
on June 14, 2001
Amazingly talented children's author Elisa Kleven "gets" kids. From her inspiring "The Paper Princess" to her latest adventure, "Sun Bread," Elisa takes readers to a world only the heart understands. Her sense-filled words speak to the hopeful, imaginative, and soulful reader who longs to be taken to a place where magic is possible. Fall asleep on any of the pages in "Sun Bread" and you will be swept off the bleak, snow-bound street and drawn into the toasty home of the ever-cheerful baker. The baker, played by a cuddly brown dog, is a dreamer and a doer and, by example, shares her light with those who doubt. She doesn't preach or lecture. She simply bakes bread, shaping the dough into the promising shape of the sun. The aroma and taste of fresh-baked bread will fill your spirit with sunshine and fun as you watch an enthused animal cast lift their heads in hope. Elisa's "Sun Bread" is more than a book, it's a kaleidoscope of love you will want to share with your children again, and again.
on July 21, 2001
Do your children love animals? How about cookies and bread? This book combines both. A loveable dog is the town baker. To encourage the return of warm weather, he shapes his loaf of bread into a likeness of the sun. The lilting rhymes in the book describe the wonderful aroma and rich, gold, smooth color and texture of the bread with power, sun power. It enticed the sun in the sky to part the clouds, come out shining brightly to behold this luscious bread created by the bakers loving touch. The recipe for sun bread is included in the book as well as colorful illustrations. Ah, the joy of cooking takes on a new meaning. Charming.If you and your children like "Sun Bread", take a look at, "And The Dish Ran Away with the Spoon" by Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummbel, or "Fishing in the Air" by Sharon Creech. Delightful books for children.
on August 4, 2014
Sweet book with an imaginary story and great recipe. I chose to make the bread with the four year old I nanny. We had a blast and enjoyed the bread. The illustrations pull you into the story and keep little children's attention. The magical aspect to the story makes it fun and exciting.
on November 1, 2001
Tangible signs of winter and warmth highlight this finely textured book from the author and illustrator of "The Paper Princess" and "The Puddle Pail." It's wintertime, and all the animals miss the sun. A baker decides to make Sun Bread to make everyone warm again. The bread warms the hearts of all the animals, and the feed some to The Sun, heating its insides to radiate light.
Kleven's illustrations create a wonderful transfer between gray, wintry skies and warm sunny days. She uses collages to great effect; the snow falling from the sky takes on an almost three-dimensional look. The drawings appear chalk-like in style, giving a smooth flow to the storyline. Parents will appreciate the transference of gloom among the animals under the winter skies to smiles under the sunshine. Some enthusiastic children are sure to ask their parents to bake Sun Bread using the recipe on the back of the book. A delight throughout.
on November 8, 2012
This book is just a wonderful story of a solution to unhappiness, frustration, due to a difficult situation. I make bread and have made the bread in this shape so many times and shared it! Each time I shared it, I could feel the love and the expression of thankfulness, peace, comfort, and joy! What wonderful ideas and feelings to have in this world. I did use a different bread recipe, but the concept is still the same, sharing the Sun with all it's cheerfulness, shedding light on everyone and everything, eradicating darkness and gloom, with all of us being reflections of the Sun. Beaming. I use this book to share with others the love of baking bread. We do it in groups, which have included elderly and a 2 yr old with her mother. While mixing the dough, she remarked with a big smile, "Look! Mommy. I'm cookin!" All of our eyes will filled with joy, and a little tear of happiness. Thank you for writing and illustrating this.
on June 22, 2016
This is a delightful story, beautifully illustrated, and my children love it. We have started the tradition of reading this story on the winter solstice and making the sun bread recipe at the back of the book. It isn't the most delicious bread, but it puffs up impressively and it's a fun project for the kids.