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Thunder Cake, by Patricia Polacco

I distinctly remember certain books from childhood. Mom collected children's books of her favorite illustrators. She kept a great stack in the living room. Rotating the books every few months, we'd never get tired of them.

It was exciting to see which books she would bring down from the attic. There's something special about reading a familiar story. The illustrations come to life; the imaginary smells and feels come back to you.

My favorite rainy day book is Thunder Cake, by Patricia Polacco. It's the story of girl who overcomes her fear of thunderstorms with the help of her grandmother, "Babushka." They gather the ingredients for a special cake as the dark and gloomy storm approaches. The warm, rustic color scheme and whimsical illustrations bring you right in to Babushka's farmhouse. Polacco did an excellent job characterizing Babuska's "grandma traits". Russian floral prints cover her sweater and head scarf. Her home is simple with beautiful icons tucked in corners of the room.  Babuska's wardrobe is practical yet gentle and welcoming. She wears old farm boots but the edge of her lace petticoat can be spotted peaking out from her billowing skirt.

Here is a excerpt from the book to whet your appetite:

"Her eyes surveyed the black clouds a way off in the distance. Then she strode into the kitchen. Her worn hands pulled a thick book from the shelf above the wood stove.
'Let's find that recipe, child,' she crowed as she lovingly fingered the grease-stained pages to a creased spot.
'Here it is...Thunder Cake!'
She carefully penned the ingredients on a piece of notepaper. ' Now lets gather all the things we'll need!' she exclaimed as she scurried toward the back door."

"Thunder Cake" by Patricia Polacco | Book Review by

"Thunder Cake" by Patricia Polacco | Book Review by"Thunder Cake" by Patricia Polacco | Book Review by

Don't remember having this book at home. I must have discovered it when doing Book It! for school. But, you can be certain that this book will go on my Wist List for my girls.

And of course, after reading the book, I'll have to make the cake! The original recipe is included at the end of the book.


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