Friday, October 26, 2012

Maybelle and the Haunted Cupcake

With Halloween just around the corner (although it looks to be a rather wet one here on the East Coast), what better time to curl up with a book about a haunted dessert? The cupcake in question is  decorated with pink icing, chopped nuts, and chocolate sprinkles. The eponymous Maybelle is a cockroach. Yes, cockroach. She lives under a refrigerator in an apartment owned by Mr. and Mrs. Peabody. The couple's cat, Ramona, is home and meal source to Maybelle's best friend, Henry the Flea.

Mrs. Peabody has just baked a batch of cupcakes for a bake sale and Maybelle can't wait to get her six legs on them. Henry reminds her of The Rules:

"When it's light, stay out of sight; if you're spied, better hide; never meet with human feet."

Maybelle intends to wait till night when fate intervenes in the shape of Bernice, a picnic ant with a bad head cold. Unable to find her way back to her nest, Bernice crowns Maybelle her new queen and does her best to fetch food for her sovereign. Heedless of The Rules, Bernice puts herself in danger time and time again and it is up to Maybelle to rescue her. In gratitude, Bernice hijacks an entire cupcake, albeit a mini one, carrying it on back. The silliness continues after the Peabodys discover what appears to be a haunted cupcake walking on its own across their kitchen floor.

An entertaining read, this book is sure to resonate with kids just starting to read short chapter books. The story bounces along at a lively place, the humor is abundant, and the clever black and white illustrations add to the charm. The Haunted Cupcake is number three in a series. I certainly intend to pick up the first two, Maybelle in the Soup and Maybelle Goes to Tea

Maybelle and the Haunted Cupcake
by Katie Speck
illustrations by Paul Ratz de Tagyos
Henry Holt, 65 pages
Published: August 2012

1 comment:

  1. I'm not sure my daughter would be interested in reading about a cockroach but maybe the illustration of the big bow will persuade her to try it! Thanks for participating in the October Carnival of Children's Literature.