By Kathryn Littlewood
Number of pages: 375
What’s the basic story line?
The Bliss family owns a magical bakery that uses an ancient Cookery Book full of secret family recipes. When the parents are called away, they leave the children in charge of the bakery. Only Rose, the 12-year-old daughter, is entrusted with the key to the book’s hiding place, but her parents forbid her to use the magical recipes. During the parents’ absence, an unexpected guest shows up. She is a glamorous and mysterious woman who tells the children she is their Aunt Lily. Rose and her siblings cannot resist the urge to impress Aunt Lily by trying out the magical recipes. When the children distribute Love Muffins and Cookies of Truth to the bakery customers, there are chaotic and hilarious results.
Are the characters believable?
The main characters, the four Bliss children, are portrayed realistically, particularly the main character, Rose. She is insecure about her looks, her abilities and whether or not her parents and siblings love her. In the course of the adventures during her parents’ absence, Rose learns how special she is and how much her family loves her and depends upon her. Aunt Lily is also believable. She uses her charm, good looks and the right words to persuade people to do what she wants them to do. The other characters in the book are not as believable. They are like cartoons; their characters are quirky and exaggerated in humorous ways to make the book more entertaining.
On a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being best), how would you rate this book?
I would rate this book a 9. The first two chapters before the parents leave are long and drawn out. The plot is clever and original. The children learn valuable lessons about family togetherness and secret-keeping. The book is laugh-out-loud funny and would make a great movie or chapter-by-chapter bedtime story.