Max Makes a Cake

Michelle Edwards; Charles San­toso, illus.
  • Review
By – August 21, 2014

Max and his dad plan to bake a sur­prise Passover birth­day cake for his mom with a mix they have bought. Five-year-old Max, who is very excit­ed, feels a need to hur­ry to make the cake to be sure it is a sur­prise for his mom. While he is feed­ing baby Trudy, he explains to her that we eat mat­zoh on Pass­over because the Jew­ish peo­ple had to hur­ry hur­ry” out of Egypt and their bread did not have suf­fi­cient time to rise. He and his dad are going to bake while Trudy naps. But his lit­tle sis­ter fuss­es and refus­es to nap, keep­ing their dad busy dur­ing the time they had planned to bake. Max makes a split-sec­ond deci­sion not to wait any longer. Hav­ing pre­pared frost­ing of cream cheese and red jam in advance, he has the idea to make an orig­i­nal cake, one cre­at­ed with lay­ers of mat­zoh inter­spersed with lay­ers of frost­ing. A can­dle fin­ish­es the cre­ation, which the fam­i­ly brings down­stairs to their mom’s paint­ing stu­dio. After mak­ing a wish, mom blows out the can­dle. Max sings Hap­py Birth­day” and also sings the Four Ques­tions in Hebrew and Eng­lish. He real­izes that he has the pow­er to accom­plish grown-up things on his own, includ­ing cre­at­ing a unique hur­ry hur­ry” Passover cake. This charm­ing sto­ry is fol­lowed by a recipe for the read­er to make a hur­ry hur­ry” cake of his own, an expla­na­tion of the Four Ques­tions, and a short ver­sion of the Passover story.

Love­ly wood-tex­tured illus­tra­tions per­fect­ly fit the sto­ry. Col­or­ful end­pa­pers show an exu­ber­ant Max and the cake he is plan­ning to make. Writ­ten by award-win­ning author Michelle Edwards, this sweet Passover sto­ry is rec­om­mend­ed for read­ers and lis­ten­ers from ages 3 – 7.

Shelly Feit has an M.L.S. and a Sixth-year Spe­cial­ist’s Cer­tifi­cate in infor­ma­tion sci­ence. She is the library direc­tor and media spe­cial­ist at the Mori­ah School in Engle­wood, NJ.

Discussion Questions