Mmmmm! Soup Joumou! by author Carline Smothers and illustrator Fuuji Takashi

Reading Age: baby – 10 years

Grade Level: 0 to grade 5

Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1st edition

Publication Date: June 5, 2017

In this picture book, a young girl partakes in the celebration of Haiti’s Independence Day by shopping with her family for soup joumou ingredients then watching the preparation of the soup. She learns about the soup’s significance. The family enjoys the meal. The colors and artwork in this book are warm and attractive. All details are easily discernible. The text is enough information for a young child. For an older child, extra research about Haiti’s Independence Day as well as varied recipes for soup joumou would increase knowledge about this important day in history.

MasterChef Junior Bakes!: Bold Recipes and Essential Techniques to Inspire Young Bakers: A Baking Book by MasterChef Junior

Reading Level: 7 – 9 years

Publisher: Clarkson Potter

Publication Date: October 8, 2019

This cookbook features photographs and tips from the contestants on the MasterChef television show. These youngsters range in age from 8 years to 13 years. The foods are delectable and are easy to more complex to prepare. In addition to baked goods this cookbook includes puddings, custards and ice creams. A getting prepared section enlightens young chefs about how to bake safely and cleanly. Additionally home challenges and science of baking are included.

Callaloo: A Jazz Folktale by author Marjuan Canady and illustrator Nabeeh Bilal

Reading Level: 3 – 7 years

Publisher: Sepia Works, LLC

Publication Date: November 18, 2013

A young boy named Winston loves eating callaloo which is a popular Caribbean meal. His aunt asks him to go to the store to buy a bush that she needs to make more callaloo. On his way, Winston stops to buy not one but two frozen treats and eats them. He boards a train and suddenly finds that he is no longer in New York but on the beautiful island of Tobago. He decides to get some crabs. Winston encounters several Caribbean folklore creatures that are somewhat creepy and mysterious after he collects the crabs and eventually releases them. He learns not to take more than he needs. This story is entertaining and teaches a lesson about greed. Unfamiliar words are bold throughout the text. There is a glossary in the back of the book. My Book Eyes enjoyed learning about the Caribbean mythical creatures. Illustrations match the text and add gloom, darkness and slight scare when needed but nothing that a young child couldn’t handle. This picture book ends happily with Winston safe at home. It can be read anytime of the year however, it would be a great read at a Halloween party by a storyteller who knows how to tell a spooky story.

Every Night Is Pizza Night by author J. Kenji Lopez-Alt and illustrator Gianna Ruggiero

Grade Level: Preschool – 2

Publisher: Norton Young Readers

Publication Date: September 1, 2020

A finicky eater named Pipo only wants to consume pizza for dinner. She believes pizza is the best food. Pipo visits and assists neighbors while they prepare their treasured dishes. Initially some of the ingredients seem repelling to her however upon tasting the finished products, she discovers that these meals are delicious. Inclusion of foods that are not typically found in childrens’ books increases knowledge of various cultures and foods i.e. tagine, red beans and rice and bibimbap. The more known dumpling is also included. Illustrations show colorful details and add diverse culinary shops for eyes to peruse. Readers may be enticed to try new cuisines after reading this picture book. A pizza recipe is included.

Popsicle Cookbook Healthy and Easy Ice Pop Recipes for Kids and Adults by Kaitlyn Donnelly

Publication Date: May 5, 2019

With the warm weather upon us, it is nice to snack on something cooling. These popsicles are a tasty and chilly treat. This cookbook features helpful hints for making popsicles in its basic section. The author discusses popsicle molds, fruit, chocolate, berries, yogurt and vegetables in recipes. Popsicles for adult palates are added. Conversion tables are inside this cookbook.

Food Network Magazine The Big, Fun Kids Cookbook: 150+ Recipes for Young Chefs by author Maile Carpenter

Kids cook

Age Range: 8 years – 12 years

Publisher: Hearst Home Kids

Publication Date: April 7, 2020

This is an excellent time for children to learn science, math, art, engineering and technology as they relate to cooking by participating in culinary projects. This cookbook boasts over 150 recipes. The photographs are mouth watering. Kids can make dishes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert and snack. Food games, quizzes and coloring pages are included. My Book Eyes enjoys learning to create fake-out cakes. Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pies from Nowhere: How Georgia Gilmore Sustained the Montgomery Bus Boycott by author Dee Romito and illustrator Laura Freeman

PiesAge Range: 6 – 9 years

Publisher: little bee books

Publucation Date: Novenber 6, 2018

This picture book biography sheds light on Georgia Gilmore, a cook, who made a significant contribution to the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott by preparing meals. She worked collectively with others who were interested in raising money to purchase vehicles and fuel so that the Black community could still travel in Alabama while seeking justice by boycotting public transportation. After she testified in court about the mistreatment she experienced by a bus driver, Georgia Gilmore was fired from her job. She opened a home based restaurant. All people loved her cooking. Dr. King and other civil rights leaders often ate at Georgia’s. Illustrations are large with high contrasting colors which makes this a terrific book for children to view in a group setting. Included is an author’s note and a recipe for Georgia Gilmore’s Homemade Pound Cake. My Book Eyes finds it interesting to read about how different people worked to create civil rights changes.

In Search of the Gingerbread Man

Gingerbread man

In Search of the Gingerbread Man by author/illustrator Timi Bliss with a contribution by Chef Michelle Gayer

Publisher: Independently Published

Publication Date: August 1, 2019

In this rhyming picture book, a girl named Charlie accompanies her mother to a bakery called the Salty Tart. Charlie and her mother assist Chef Michelle Gayer in making gingerbread cookies. The story becomes a mystery when a cookie escapes the kitchen. Children will eagerly turn pages or listen intently to the reader as they follow clues then learn the gingerbread man’s motive for leaving the bakery. Illustrations are colorful with characters that portray a variety of societal  roles. My Book Eyes finds this book ideal for children 2 – 8 years of age with the younger end being captivated by the story and illustrations and the older end enjoying following the included recipes for cookies and icing.

 

Pete the Cat and the Perfect Pizza Party

Lets the cat

Pete the Cat and the Perfect Pizza Party by author James Dean and illustrator Kimberly Dean

Age Range: 4 – 8 years

Publisher: HarperCollins

Publication Date: September 3, 2019

Pete is throwing a pizza party however many of his friends prefer different toppings than Pete’s pepperoni. With everyone’s input, they put together a combination pizza that is pleasing to all. My Book Eyes liked seeing other activities that characters do during the party i.e. bouncy house. The art is vibrant and follows the Pete the Cat style.

Thank You, Omu!

download (1)

Thank You, Omu! by author/ illustrator Oge Mora

Age Range: 4 – 7 years

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Publication Date: October 2, 2018

A woman named Omu cooks up a fragrant stew. The aroma alerts the olfactory senses of many townspeople. Each person follows the scent to Omu’s house. She graciously gives visitors portions of her stew which eventually leaves her without any for herself. The townspeople show Omu similar kindness. The collage illustrations show varieties in occupations and ethnicities. My Book Eyes marveled at discussions that this book could generate including collaboration, helping others, occupations to name a few.

Oge Mora plans to be at Children’s Day at the Brooklyn Book Festival on September 21, 2019 at 2:00 PM. Click on EVENTS above for information about Brooklyn Book Festival.

Thank You, Omu! was selected by Jumpstart Read for the Record 2019 to be read nationally on November 7, 2019. https://www.jstart.org/read-for-the-record/