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Bliss (Bliss Bakery Trilogy Series #1)

Bliss (Bliss Bakery Trilogy Series #1)

3.9 437
by Kathryn Littlewood

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Rosemary Bliss's family has a secret. It's the Bliss Cookery Booke—an ancient, leather-bound volume of enchanted recipes like Singing Gingersnaps.

Rose and her siblings are supposed to keep the Cookery Booke locked away while their parents are out of town, but then a mysterious stranger shows up. "Aunt" Lily rides a motorcycle and also whips


Rosemary Bliss's family has a secret. It's the Bliss Cookery Booke—an ancient, leather-bound volume of enchanted recipes like Singing Gingersnaps.

Rose and her siblings are supposed to keep the Cookery Booke locked away while their parents are out of town, but then a mysterious stranger shows up. "Aunt" Lily rides a motorcycle and also whips up exotic (but delicious) dishes for dinner. Soon boring, non-magical recipes feel like life before Aunt Lily—a lot less fun.

So Rose and her siblings experiment with just a couple of recipes from the forbidden Cookery Booke. A few Love Muffins and Cookies of Truth couldn't cause too much trouble . . . could they?

Kathryn Littlewood's culinary caper blends rich emotional flavor with truly enchanting wit, yielding one heaping portion of hilarious family adventure.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The Follow Your Bliss Bakery has a remedy for everything. Stone Sleep Snickerdoodles can cure sleepwalking, and Fluffy White Macaroons once lifted a neighbor right out of a well. When the Bliss parents go on a business trip, they leave the key to their magical Bliss Cookery Booke with 12-year-old Rosemary, and things go haywire. “Aunt” Lily (a distant cousin) shows up, charming Rosemary’s siblings, but Rosemary senses Lily’s true aim: to steal the book. The only way to test Lily’s trustworthiness is to whip up some of the magical recipes and observe her reactions. After Rosemary’s brother distributes their experiments to the whole town, creating crowds of love-struck teenagers, nuns who can’t hold their tongues, and general mayhem, Rosemary wonders if she’s fit to be a “kitchen magician” after all. Littlewood’s first novel mixes the sincere and the silly with entertaining results. This lighthearted family adventure offers a well-meaning and believably insecure heroine, as well as boisterous sibling interactions, and the open-ended finale suggests that readers can expect to see the Bliss family again soon. Ages 8–12. Agent: Michael Stearns and Ted Malawer, the Inkhouse. (Feb.)
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"This sweet (but never syrupy) story has surprising substance and broad appeal. A humorous tone, clear, thoughtful writing, and a brisk pace will also ensure that this one is gobbled up quickly."
The Bulletin for the Center for Children's Books
“This sweet (but never syrupy) story has surprising substance and broad appeal. A humorous tone, clear, thoughtful writing, and a brisk pace will also ensure that this one is gobbled up quickly.”
Children's Literature - Beverley Fahey
The people of Calamity Falls are fortunate to have in their midst the Bliss Bakery that turns our delectable treats and with the help of the Bliss Cookery Booke and a few magical ingredients, like tears of a heartbroken girl or a vial of a good man's last breath, can cure just about any need of the residents of the small town. Rosemary, the oldest and most responsible of the Bliss children finds herself in charge of the bakery when her parents are called to a neighboring town to harness a severe flu outbreak with their magical ingredients. Her strict orders are to guard the magic cookbook and under no circumstances reveal its whereabouts. No sooner do her parents leave then a mysterious woman riding a motorcycle and calling herself Aunt Lily arrives on the scene. She appeals to Rosemary's insecurity and promises her fame on Lily's proposed cooking show to bring the Cookery Booke out of hiding. With the full backing of brother Ty and younger siblings they bake batches of Love Muffins and Cookies of Truth that result in mayhem and hilarity. As the youngsters work to unravel the catastrophe and return everything to normal before their parents' return, readers are treated to a madcap adventure. The quirky, eccentric family brings loads of humor to this tale that ends with a hint of a sequel. The ingredients of magic, humor, adventure, and family blend to create one very fun read. Reviewer: Beverley Fahey
VOYA - Kaitlin Connors
The Bliss family owns a small bakery in Calamity Falls and the recipes they use are magical—literally. The Bliss Cookery Booke holds multiple generations' secret recipes that can cure influenza, make people speak and walk backwards, and even mend a broken heart. Due to the amazing powers of the Bliss family baked goods, the Bliss parents are called away to help save another town. The children, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme, are left to run the bakery when the mysterious Aunt Lily appears with a heightened interest in the family's recipe book. Rosemary, the eldest daughter is determined to prove herself as a magical baker and responsible young adult. Will meddling with the family's book, however, create more harm than good? Kathryn Littlewood's Bliss is a jaunty, humorous tale that will be sure to entice middle school readers. Rosemary Bliss, twelve-years old, perfectly embodies the adolescent desire to be seen in a more mature light while still attempting to fit in and be accepted by her siblings and peers. The children's attempts at magic and the subsequent flubs simply make this cannot-put-it-down delectable. Aunt Lilly adds an extra menacing element, giving the story more depth and suspense. Littlewood sets the stage for a sequel which readers will eagerly anticipate upon devouring this enjoyable morsel. Reviewer: Kaitlin Connors
Kirkus Reviews
Twelve-year-old Rose and her siblings stir up trouble in Calamity Falls when they experiment with some old family recipes after their parents leave the Bliss bakery in their hands. Ever since she saw "her mother fold a lightning bolt into a bowl of batter," Rose has known "her parents made magic in the Bliss bakery." Their secret recipes, guarded in the Bliss Cookery Booke, have discreetly averted many catastrophes in Calamity Falls. Next to her gorgeous brother Ty, her funny brother Sage and her adorable sister Leigh, dependable Rose feels invisible, but she longs to be a "good baker wizard." When her parents go away, Rose is left in charge of the Cookery Booke and warned to let no one open or move it. Immediately, a mysterious stranger named Lily arrives, announcing she's a distant cousin who's come to help with the bakery. Rose suspects Lily really wants the Booke, but she falls under Lily's insidious influence and finds herself baking and dispensing Love Muffins and Cookies of Truth with hilarious results. As Rose bakes her way out of trouble, she must choose between Lily and her own family. A heroine with baking in her blood and a zany plot liberally sprinkled with humor blend into fun family adventure. Black-and-white spot art highlights story elements. Lighthearted bliss. (Fantasy. 8-12)
Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“This sweet (but never syrupy) story has surprising substance and broad appeal. A humorous tone, clear, thoughtful writing, and a brisk pace will also ensure that this one is gobbled up quickly.”
Washington Post
“Delicious and exciting.”
Wall Street Journal
“Quite delicious and very funny.”
Boston Globe
“Middle-grade readers who enjoy slapstick humor and fantastical adventures will get a generous helping of each here in what amounts to an impressive debut.”
Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“This sweet (but never syrupy) story has surprising substance and broad appeal. A humorous tone, clear, thoughtful writing, and a brisk pace will also ensure that this one is gobbled up quickly.”
School Library Journal
Gr 3–6—Twelve-year-old Rose's mother is an excellent baker, and the lightning bolt or weasel's yawn that she adds to normal ingredients gives her cookies and muffins an extra little something that helps keep trouble at bay in their town. Combating a summer flu epidemic, the mayor of neighboring Humbleton begs the Bliss parents to come to his town to make their almond croissants, known for abating flu symptoms. They demur: How will they keep their home-based bakery operational while they are gone, and who will take care of their four children? They finally agree that Rose and teenage Ty can keep things running with the help of their neighbor and the bakery assistant. Before leaving, the parents lock away the Bliss Cookery Booke and entrust the key to Rose, with instructions that there will be no magic and that the Booke is not to be disturbed. Soon, beautiful, enigmatic Aunt Lily arrives and seems to cast a spell on the children. When she tells them of her plans to host a TV show featuring the most wonderful recipes in the world, Ty and Sage immediately want to let their aunt see the cookbook. As a compromise, Rose agrees that she and Ty can try out a few of the recipes, showing Lily the finished products. Chaos quickly ensues throughout the town when one recipe after another goes slightly wrong. Humor abounds in this sweet story that stresses the importance of family, and readers will enjoy getting to know the eccentric Bliss family. The cliff-hanger ending hints at a sequel.—Kim Dare, Fairfax County Public Schools, VA

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Bliss Bakery Trilogy Series , #1
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.70(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.50(d)
870L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

Kathryn Littlewood is a writer, actress, comedienne, and bon vivant who lives in New York City, works often in Los Angeles, and has a sweet tooth for pain au chocolat and sweet novels for middle-grade readers. This, her third novel, joins Bliss and A Dash of Magic in the Bliss trilogy.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Bliss 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 437 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I didn't get this as a book on my nook, but as a book at the library. Nook or not- this book is very good. Filled with magic and mystery, this book is something you will want to read in one setting. I couldn't stop reading, and I WILL be on the lookout for Littlewood's work and books to follow Bliss.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A sweet and "good for all ages" book. It is simply refreshing. Thank you B&N for this tasteful Free Friday selection. So far, it is NOT filled with horrible language.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was very nice Barnes and Noble gave a book on free Fridays, for the younger sect. 9-11 year olds can read this themselves and really enjoy it. I liked it too. It is a good clean book about a wonderful 12 year old girl, trying to figure out life and her place in a strange but blissfully wonderful family and the delightfully odd town they live in. 126 pages. Well edited. No drugs, violence, cursing, sex or depressive thoughts. All tweens and even 9 year olds should find this book enjoyable. THANK YOU B&N for thinking of the youngsters! AD
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you don't like the Free Friday books, just type in 0.00 in the search screen. There are many free books to choose from! Stop your bellyaching! I look forward to Friday's,even if I don't want the book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It is a total easy read but you have to have a hard/Long book knowledge because it csn get confusing sometimes. But overall its a great book for people who have read Harry Potter or my be a little to young for it. 5-5 for sure!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Magical, exciting, and interesting, I loved this book and can't wait for a sequel. It was predictable, but still good. And BTW to Beverly Fahey from Children's Literature on the Editor Reviews, Rosemary is NOT the oldest of the Bliss syblings. Bkwrm ;D
EGHunter01 More than 1 year ago
Review title: Sheer Bliss. An engaging storyline will keep readers' attention for hours. The cast of characters are sure to amaze and delight readers and at times have them laughing-out-loud at the bizarre behavior. Readers will learn to dream big, yet seek warmth, acceptance, and respect as they pursue their dream or future goal. **A great weekend was spent "eating up" this "delicious" torte tale, yummy reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a fun read. While this is a book meant for young readers, any adult who has a sense of whimsy and who enjoys occasionally visiting or revisiting books from childhood might enjoy this. Note how many adults are Harry Potter fans, or enjoyed the books Coraline or The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman! For those readers annoyed that this "kiddie" book was offered for Free Fridays - please stop giving these books 1 star reviews unless you have read and did not enjoy the book. This confuses those who are checking the ratings for a book. Send an email to the B&N powers that be, that you want something else for Free Fridays. And keep in mind that you are not the only reader in the world. Readers of all ages and tastes are being catered to here.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love it
65tdy More than 1 year ago
Bliss is a really fun read for all ages. Doesn't matter that it is slated for younger people. I found it light, fun, and entertaining. Don't know why some people seem to think we should be age grouped. If it is fun to read and you enjoy reading, why not. I am, by the way, a 69 year old and I found this book fun!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Do not rate books simply because you didn't care for the free Friday selection if it wasn't in your genre of books skip it its free for goodness sakes !!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is really good everyone should read it I can't wait for the next one to come out on feb. Maybe the 12th of feb. I love this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Oh ya this rocks ..........bliss all day long
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Although certainly aimed at younger readers, and while the potter-like theme of a magically infused transformation of "ordinary" life, could be an early turn-off, I enjoyed this fun book for it's own merits. It's a quick read, a positive and uplifting story that engages the reader in a, while predictable, certainly a meaningful development of a complex character named Rose. The setting of a bakery in a small town hints at themes of small community life and how a passion like cooking can become a shared blessing, yet the mysterious Aunt Lilly, and the drama of family and looming catastrophe keeps the book engaging for what I imagine will be a wide range of audiences who commit to read at least a few chapters before giving their judgment. I will be looking forward to the sequel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fans of harry potter and Lemony Snicket will enjoy this whimsical return to the magic of harry potter and the heart and wit of a Snicket novel. The main characters are instantly relatable and the plot will have you hooked on the first page, this book only loses a star for its side characters, who seem one dimensional, but still help to move the plot along.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is an excellent story for tweens.  I was thrilled to see something so perfect for my 10 y.o. daughter available as a Friday Freebie last month.  When looking for something quick and fun to read last week, I decided see how it was for myself.  I wasn't expecting such a quality book to be offered for free.  This story is truly delightful, and while probably marketed more to girls, I think boys would enjoy it as well.  Can't wait to read the next one, it really leaves you hanging!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Like Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle for tweens! Loved it. Light- hearted but also explores family values and how we all just want to be accepted for who we are and recognized for our uniquness.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Got this to screen before getting it for my granddaughter. Ended up reading the entire book myself. Truely approprite for preteen through seniors. Will definately purchase the sequel due out next week.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
And I enjoyed this delightful little tale very much. For those complaining about it being a Free Friday selection, I happen to know a few kids that own Nooks. Also, it is free. If you don't want to read it, don't. These reviews are for other readers, it is not the place to review B&N or Nook.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the best book ever! I love this series. If anyone is looking for a book to read, then read this one! There are 3 in total, and I've read the first 2, and I'm waiting to get the third one. You really should really read these books!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Do you like OMG kinda cute stories than read this. Bliss is about how Rosemary Bliss and her 1 little sis and a little bro as well as a older brother mess up town. They try to fix it but nothing is working. Want it yet???
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love to bake and this book was amazing. One of the best books ive ever read. And ive read a LOT of books!! Highly recomended
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am out of the age range, being much older, and still enjoyed it as much as anybody. It's a light and easy read with heart felt moments that kept it interesting thorughout the entire book. I loved it.
lovelybookshelf More than 1 year ago
Bliss by Kathryn Littlewood was last week's Free Fridays Nook selection from Barnes & Noble. It's geared for ages 8 and up, but I'd heard it's a fun read for all ages. I love magical realism - Haruki Murakami and Aimee Bender are two of my favorite authors - so I thought I'd give it a try. Overall, this was a fun read. Many times I laughed out loud. Littlewood has a way of portraying each character, no matter how minor, in a colorful and lively way. Plus, there were secret rooms, magical recipes, strange ingredients that come to life... did I mention secret rooms?! I recognized the villain as such from the moment she entered the story, and knew exactly what she would attempt to do. However, the character had enough complexity that I didn't lose interest, and enjoyed reading what would happen next. When the first recipe was attempted, I thought for sure there was going to be a cliché tie-in with a tween crush that had been mentioned early in Chapter 1. That probably would have made me lose interest in the book entirely. I was so thankful Littlewood didn't do the obvious there! The behavior of the older brother regularly made me groan in an "I'm-embarrassed-for-you" kind of way, such as this moment in Chapter 15: "Ty rolled up one of the sleeves of his T-shirt and flexed his bicep. Then he kissed it. 'I might do some serious damage to this baby.'" I don't know. Maybe 14-year-old boys really do act like this. I know the humor is geared toward kids, though. I do have to say, Rose's whining about not feeling appreciated, not feeling trusted, started to annoy me more and more throughout the story. Her parents trusted her with the key to the cookbook. They left her in charge of protecting it - not her older brother. That point seemed completely lost on Rose. Littlewood does keep the literary bar high in Bliss. She seamlessly weaving words such as copacetic, din, putrid, natty, and elucidate into her sentences. She challenges her young readers' vocabularies without overwhelming them, providing plenty of context clues so they are able to grasp the meaning of new words without reaching for a dictionary. Chapter 13 contains some silly word play (I won't spoil it!) which should amuse young readers, especially. There were also some nice "lessons" in the book: trusting one's own intuition, the importance of expressing your feelings to your loved ones, and a touching moment when Rose saw a particularly annoying customer in a different light. Bliss is the first in a series; the second book, A Dash of Magic, is due out February 12, 2013.