Lucci’s charming art seems to burst off the pages, bringing vibrant life to Isaac’s seaside village and the mouthwatering lollipops, cakes, and doughnuts that are sure to capture readers’ hearts and appetites. Townsfolk are lively, illustrated in otherworldly forms with elfin ears and cyclops eyes, and Gary, the singing baker who takes Isaac on a detailed hunt for the missing sticky buns, proves charming in his attempts to save the day. Young readers will be spellbound by the town's marketplace—“truly a place no other could equal”—where kaleidoscopic scenery, magic tricks,and animal entertainers steal the show.
Parents, meanwhile, will appreciate how the story’s educational opportunities, like the measuring chart on Isaac’s wall, can spark learning discussions for younger audiences. Some readers will pause at some forced or repeated rhymes (store/Tudor appears two spreads in a row) and may wonder what the bigger message is behind Isaac’s quest for tasty delicacies, but the tale’s sheer gaiety wins out in the end. The author’s attention to emotions, namely Isaac’s crusade to preserve his tranquil mood, is a welcome and resonant theme. For those who crave frivolity and carefree indulgence, this upbeat story will hit the spot.
Takeaway: A delightful morsel of merrymaking, baking, and fantasy exploration.
Great for fans of: Anika Denise’s Baking Day at Grandma’s. Dee Leone’s Dough Knights and Dragons.
Design and typography: A
Marketing copy: C