Yummy: A History of Desserts

Random/Graphic. Oct. 2021. 240p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9780593124376; pap. $12.99. ISBN 9780593124383.
Gr 6 Up–A small, winged, green-haired, brown-skinned, bespectacled “food sprite” called Peri is an enthusiastic tour guide through the world of dessert history, accompanied by two other sprites: light-skinned, pink-haired Fee, who adores stories, and brown-skinned, blue-haired Fada, who loves science and chocolate. The narrators’ tiny size allows the desserts to take prominence; chapters are devoted to ice cream, cake, brownies, doughnuts, pie, gummies, cookies, and macarons. Peri’s history of each type of dessert is sprinkled with stories (such as “The Legend of the Waffle Cone”), interview corners, and science labs, each of which has a different colored background to set it apart from the main narrative. Most chapters are preceded by a world map indicating where that dessert has appeared throughout history; Elliott does not shy away from the role of trade, colonization, and enslavement as she discusses how certain foods spread across the globe and baked goods were adapted to local tastes. The book is full of entertaining nuggets on an appealing topic, and recipes are included, complete with a list of ingredients and equipment and step-by-step instructions. Back matter includes a bibliography.
VERDICT As Peri muses dreamily, “You ever just think about cake?” Great British Baking Show fans, as well as those who love to eat, bake, and share desserts, will devour this sweet treat of a nonfiction graphic novel.

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