Max makes a cake

Michelle Edwards

Book - 2014

Max finds the perfect way to make a unique Passover surprise birthday cake for his mother.

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Location Call Number   Status
Children's Room j394.267/Edwards Checked In
Picture books
New York : Random House [2014]
First edition
Item Description
"A PJ Library Book Club selection."
Physical Description
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 26 cm
Main Author
Michelle Edwards (-)
Other Authors
Charles Santoso (illustrator)
Review by Booklist Reviews

The Passover story of the Jews fleeing Pharaoh blends nicely here with the story of a little boy hurrying to make a cake. Max Osher is at the age when he can do many things all by himself, such as dressing (though his yarmulke ends up a little off center) and even reciting the four questions for Passover in Hebrew and English for the seder. As Max feeds the baby, Trudy, he explains why they eat matzo on this night, because the Jewish people, once freed by Pharaoh, had to "hurry, hurry, hurry" away, with their bread on their backs. This resulted in sun-baked, cracker-like bread. Max and his father have to hurry, too, during Trudy's nap, to make a special Passover birthday cake for Max and Trudy's mother. But Trudy won't nap, leaving Max alone in the kitchen facing a deadline. His construction of a "hurry, hurry, hurry" matzo cake (recipe included, natch) from matzos, cream cheese, and jam is a triumph of self-sufficiency. Warmly tinted, wood-textured illustrations fit this gentle, informative book. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

It's Mom's birthday, so she has to have a cake. But Dad has baby duty, and it's looking less and less likely that he and son Max will be able to make the kosher-for-Passover cake mix they bought at the supermarket. Unable to wait any longer, Max invents a chametz-free cake that's "different from all other cakes" and well within the grasp of any young, aspiring chef: a stack of matzo that uses jam-sweetened cream cheese for frosting and filling. In his first book for children, illustrator/concept artist Santoso astutely renders Max's journey from itchy exasperation to triumphant ingenuity, while Edwards (Room for the Baby) makes some nice parallels between his impatience and the "hurry, hurry, hurry" that characterized the ancient Israelites' flight from Egypt. The ending is ripe for replication. Ages 3–7. Illustrator's agent: Shannon Associates. (Jan.) [Page ]. Copyright 2014 PWxyz LLC

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

PreS-Gr 2—Max is quite proud of himself. He can dress himself and almost tie his shoes, and he knows the Four Questions for Passover in both Hebrew and English. He's more than happy to show off this skill to baby sister, Trudy, who will, according to tradition, ask the questions at the Seder meal herself one day. In the meantime, though, he wants to "hurry, hurry, hurry" like the Israelites out of Egypt in order to bake a surprise birthday-Passover cake for Mama. He and Daddy will make it with a special Passover mix while Trudy naps. But the baby's fussiness keeps getting in the way of best-laid plans. Frustrated, Max decides to take matters into his own hands. Cream cheese and red jam mixed together make a delicious frosting. But what about the cake? Getting creative, the youngster fashions a "layer" cake (matzoh-frosting-matzoh) for the perfect "hurry, hurry, hurry" Passover cake. Santoso's realistic digital renderings of Max's face capture the expressions of one determined little boy. A recipe and a short description of the Passover story are included. A light introduction to a Jewish holiday.—Roxanne Burg, Orange County Public Library, CA [Page 92]. (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Wanting help to bake a surprise Passover birthday cake for his mommy, little Max becomes increasingly frustrated by a baby sister whose fussing requires all of their father's attention. By the National Jewish Book Award-winning author of Chicken Man.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Baby sisters can be so annoying!That's what Max thinks. Max needs his daddy's help—right now!—to bake a surprise Passover birthday cake for his mommy. But as baby Trudy fusses instead of napping, and Daddy tries to settle her down, their time to bake is slipping away.With her warm and pithy storytelling, Michelle Edwards captures the moment in a child's life when he realizes that he has the power to do things on his own.