Beverly Billingsly Takes the Cake

Overview

What's the most important part of any birthday celebration? The cake, of course! And who better to create Oliver Shumacher's birthday confection than his best friend, Beverly. She even has the perfect recipe: The Caramel Candy Castle Cake. Just gazing upon it sends Beverly on a magical journey through the land of cake. Surely the multitalented bear can pull it off . . . or can she?
Loaded with color, humor, and the irrepressible determination ...

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Overview

What's the most important part of any birthday celebration? The cake, of course! And who better to create Oliver Shumacher's birthday confection than his best friend, Beverly. She even has the perfect recipe: The Caramel Candy Castle Cake. Just gazing upon it sends Beverly on a magical journey through the land of cake. Surely the multitalented bear can pull it off . . . or can she?
Loaded with color, humor, and the irrepressible determination that is Beverly's trademark, this could well be Beverly Billingsly's sweetest adventure yet!

Beverly runs into a problem while making the "caramel candy castle cake" for Oliver's party, but her creativity and her mother's encouragement save the day.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Beverly wants to do something special for Oliver's birthday. Since the birthday cake is so important, she decides to bake one for her friend—with her mom's help, of course. She finds the perfect recipe—a beautiful castle cake—and she dreams about it every day until it is time to make the special gift. Everything goes according to plan until her mother receives a phone call from Beverly's aunt. Beverly decides to pour the cake batter into the pans while she waits for her mother. When the cake comes out of the oven, it will not come out of the pans! Beverly forgot to grease the pans. Needless to say, her dream cake remains a dream and she becomes very discouraged, running to her room in tears. When her mother coaxes her out of the bedroom, Beverly receives a surprise. Her mother has arranged the cake layers into a pattern and encourages Beverly to determine how she will decorate it. The botched cake becomes a beautiful butterfly cake and is the hit of Oliver's birthday party after all. Children learn that there is a solution to every problem, even when that problem seems insurmountable. Stadler's illustrations are large, colorful, and simple. The characters are abstract enough that the reader can imagine them to be anything or anyone—bears, dogs, or humans. Even without the words, it is obvious what Beverly has done this time in the author's fourth book in the series. 2005, Gulliver Books/Harcourt, Ages 3 to 7.
—Debbie West
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-In her fourth picture-book adventure, Beverly Billingsly plans to make the perfect Caramel Candy Castle Cake for her friend Oliver's birthday. However, things don't go quite according to plan when the little animal forgets to grease the pan, and her mother has to cut the cake in half to remove it. Beverly wails in frustration, but finds a solution when her mother encourages her to view the problem from a new angle. Stadler cleverly works the ultimate resolution into the story (making a butterfly cake) by dropping lots of visual hints along the way. The bright gouache illustrations, bound by chunky black lines, convey Beverly's anguish and triumph through the expert use of white space, expressions, and patterns. This is a plucky heroine in league with Ian Falconer's Olivia and Kay Thompson's Eloise.-Kathleen Kelly MacMillan, Maryland School for the Deaf, Columbia Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Beverly meets her match in a caramel-candy castle cake, a generous present she's making for a friend's birthday. It nearly undoes her until her mother lends a hand in Stadler's fourth outing with the engaging young bear. Beverly decides to make her classmate a birthday cake to remember, one she swoons simply thinking about. It will be majestic, but also a piece of work, her mother warns her. When her mother leaves the kitchen for a second, Beverly puts the batter in the pans and slips them in the oven, Clever Beverly, except she forgot to grease the pans. Disaster is averted when her mother has an idea and Beverly brings it to life. It's a nice touch to have Mom coming to the rescue; Beverly doesn't have to have all the answers and moms are supposed to be there in times of need. Stadler's party-colored artwork, with its thick, raw, black outlining manages to convey a tender vulnerability in all its guilelessness. (Picture book. 3-6)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780152053574
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 3/1/2005
  • Series: Gulliver Books
  • Edition description: Ages 3 to 7
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 3 - 7 Years
  • Lexile: NC710L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 9.80 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

ALEXANDER STADLER is the author-illustrator of Lila Bloom and Duncan Rumplemeyer's Bad Birthday, as well as to the Beverly books. He lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

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