cover image Ready, Set, Dough!

Ready, Set, Dough!

Kelly J. Baptist. Crown, $16.99 (176p) ISBN 978-0-593-42917-4

Kentwood Academy sixth grader Zoe, an aspiring journalist, dreams of owning a Horizon WordPro GT laptop. Her parents aren’t in a position to buy her an expensive device, however, so she splits her time between the computers at the library and her older brother’s friend’s house to crank out her column for the school’s paper. When Kentwood’s Spring fundraiser rolls around—during which students sell cookie dough to help fund their extracurriculars and win prizes—Zoe realizes that one of the fundraising rewards is a WordPro. She persuades her best friend Felix to help her come up with ideas to win the competition, but selling cookie dough isn’t easy—especially when the competition, privileged classmate Amaya, has access to her affluent family’s connections to drive sales. Zoe becomes laser-focused on achieving her goals, and uses any opportunity to sell cookie dough, even if it means missing family and friends’ important milestones or putting herself in potentially dangerous situations. Baptist explores themes of class and wealth disparity through Zoe’s stubbornly determined first-person POV, and enriches the narrative with distinct and unforgettably rendered characters. Protagonists are racially diverse. Ages 8–10. (Oct.)