The Sugar Plum Bakers: A Tale of 12 Holiday Treats

Melissa de la Cruz Studio. Sept. 2023. 48p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781368089579.
K-Gr 2–This picture book explores the yummy goodness of the holidays with the help of fairies and the baked goods they are preparing for delivery to children the world over. Unfortunately, one of the bakers is causing a bit of havoc with his not-so-helping hand: Echo wants to help, but he isn’t having success. The fairies get frustrated with him, as they are running out of time to have their delicacies ready before the impending snowstorm. But when they realize Echo is gone, they start to understand what he added to each of the recipes with his own special type of zing. Readers will see in Echo’s story how everyone has special gifts to add to any team. Country flags on pages with treats help readers identify where that treat is from. Lui’s illustrations of whimsical fairies working together to make the treats will have readers licking their lips and wanting recipes to try at home. Luckily, Tanumihardja shares an easy recipe for brigadeiros in the back of the book for young bakers. Explanations of each featured specialty add to the overall lesson that while treats from around the world might all be different, they are equally delicious—just like how all members of a team are important.
VERDICT A fun addition to holiday literature that incorporates the importance of teamwork and diversity.

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