Hugless Douglas and the great cake bake by David Melling
Hugless Douglas series. Hodder, 2016. ISBN 9781444919882
(Age: 5+) Recommended. Cooking. Humour. The series of Hugless Dougless books has created a large fan base, and this, the fifth in the stories about the bear, will be well received. Douglas is big warm and friendly, staring out at the reader as he involves himself in one adventure after another, adventures which all readers will recognise.
With a nod to the many cooking shows on our small screen, this time Douglas follows the trail of honey to find a group of sheep collecting the ingredients they need to make honey cakes. The black faced sheep don his apron for him, and pass down all the food they have collected, as he offers to be involved as well. The process for making the cakes is followed in the story and the mixture eventually made, with admonishments about not eating the mixture before it is cooked.
But as the group stands in line with their plates waiting for the cakes to be taken from the oven, a food fight beaks out and Douglas is so involved that he misses the cakes. When he realises what has happened they have all been eaten. Still hungry he must eat the rejects, the carrot and nuts, but finds them to his liking, even though they are not topped with honey.
This is an easily absorbed story of cooking cakes, of the process involved, of the etiquette of cooking and eating what has been cooked, of waiting your turn, and of the idea that vegetables and nuts can be as good as cake.
Fun filled illustrations will drag the readers' eyes along the pages, following the antics of the black faced sheep and Douglas.