cover image How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World

How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World

Marjorie Priceman, Majorie Priceman. Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers, $16 (40pp) ISBN 978-0-679-83705-3

A yen to bake sends a girl on a worldwide shopping spree to gather ingredients for that favorite all-American treat, apple pie. Priceman ( The Tiny, Tiny Boy and the Big, Big Cow ) is a master of whimsy (the chicken chosen to lay the eggs, for example, falls to earth in a parachute). Energetic watercolors radiate an offbeat nostalgia; although they're not moored in any particular period, they contain an appealing jumble of details, from Edwardian (an antique pram; turn-of-the-century millinery) through the present day (a yellow school bus). Priceman addresses her audience directly, an astute device that draws readers in and lets them accompany the pinafore-clad, Madeleine-esque cook on her travels, from the Italian countryside (she's there for the semolina wheat) to Sri Lanka (for cinnamon, from the bark of the kurundu tree) to Jamaica (for the sugar cane) and home via Vermont (the apples, of course). At last, the pie is baked and feasted upon by the girl and all the friends she has made on her travels. For those inevitably salivating by the final page, a recipe is included. Ages 4-8. (May)