cover image Bake Infinite Pie with X + Y

Bake Infinite Pie with X + Y

Eugenia Cheng, illus. by Amber Ren. Little, Brown, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-7595-5686-7

When children X and Y begin dreaming of “infinite pie,” a family member suggests boundless combinations for baking and eating treats in this kid-friendly introduction to the concept. While X wants “an infinitely wide pie,” Y wants “an infinitely tall pie.” “How can we make infinite pie when it isn’t real?” the children muse. Luckily, their imaginative Aunt Z has some ideas, and the trio are soon mixing, rolling, cutting, folding, and baking their way through mathematical concepts including exponentials, fractals, Zeno’s paradox, and more (detailed in back matter). The mottled, uncluttered backgrounds of Ren’s ink and digital illustrations focus attention on warm-skinned, dark-haired X, Y, and Z, and the concept-forward pastries they cook up (for example, a Koch snowflake). Though readers would benefit from an initial definition of infinity, Cheng’s frequently lengthy, dialogue-driven text encourages curiosity about rather than fear of math. Back matter includes an author’s note and pie recipe. Ages 4–8. (Feb.)