Reviews for Gingerbread Baby
Booklist Monthly Selections - #2 November 1999
Ages 4^-8. Once again Brett has given her own special spin to a classic. Obnoxious, cocky Gingerbread Baby is definitely a cookie for the millennium. Equally modern is his owner, Matti, a Swiss boy who bakes Gingerbread Baby all by himself. As the escaped cookie wreaks havoc on the snow-covered village, it is pursued by the expected cast of animals and town folk. Meanwhile, Matti is at home working diligently on a surefire plan to catch his errant creation, with his progress monitored in side-panel pictures. Brett's signature artwork is intriguingly detailed and delightfully old-fashioned: the Swiss locale gives the book a wonderful holiday feeling, as do the cookies and confections that decorate the picture borders. A special lift-the-flap illustration at the back reveals how clever Matti eventually triumphs. ((Reviewed November 15, 1999)) Copyright 2000 Booklist Reviews
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2000 Spring
When a gingerbread baby escapes from the oven, he leads everyone except the boy Matti on a wild chase. In her trademark decorative borders, Brett shows how Matti stays home and bakes a gingerbread house, into which he secretly entices the gingerbread baby. Brett's detailed illustrations offer more interest than does the story--a moderately amusing new take on a familiar tale.Copyright 2000 Horn Book Guide Reviews
Library Talk Reviews 2000 January
Jan Brett has done it again. This time she has taken the classic tale of the Gingerbread Man, added a few new characters, and woven a new and exciting story. The main character is a cookie baby, who escapes from Matti, the little boy who made him. Matti finds the gingerbread man recipe in a "worn-looking cookbook with old-fashioned writing on the cover." The directions say to bake the gingerbread cookie for a full eight minutes and do not peek, but in his eagerness to see the finished man, Matti opens the door, and out pops Gingerbread Baby. The adventures of Gingerbread Baby are illustrated in beautiful pictures. The illustrations' vivid colors and dramatic character expressions come together with the text to give the story an endearing quality. The wonderful details on each page and in the borders are reminiscent of Bretts's earlier books. Many folks try to catch Gingerbread Baby, including Matti's mother and father, a tabby cat, a dog, some goats, two little girls, a pig, and, of course, a fox. The end of the story is quite clever and charming and not nearly as tragic as that of the original tale. This will make a great addition to any home or school library. Highly Recommended. Eileen Welsh, First Grade Teacher, St. John the Evangelist School, Morrisville, Pennsylvania © 2000 Linworth Publishing, Inc.
Publishers Weekly Reviews 1999 September #3
Brett (The Mitten; Comet's Nine Lives) presents a rather wordy and wandering version of "The Gingerbread Boy." Impatient for the gingerbread man to bake the full eight minutes that is specified in the cookbook, Matti opens the oven door prematurely and a doughy baby jumps out instead: "I am the Gingerbread Baby,/ Fresh from the pan./ If you want me,/ Catch me if you can." The cherubic child remains at home while his parents and a smattering of animals lead a cumulative chase through the Swiss countryside, depicted in minutely detailed pictures. Within the artist's characteristically intricate borders, windowlike cutouts shaped like gingerbread cookie cutters reveal Matti's activities at home: he bakes, constructs and decorates an elaborate gingerbread house, which he then places in a clearing in the woods. Well ahead of his pursuers, the fugitive cookie discovers the elaborate structure and happily takes refuge inside. The grand finale allows youngsters to lift a flap shaped like the gingerbread house to uncover its new resident, smiling and winking. Brett's fetching art offsets her rather facile narrative in a book likely to please her faithful fans and holiday gift shoppers. Ages 4-8. (Oct.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal Reviews 1999 November
PreS-Gr 2-One might ask if there is a need for yet another retelling of "The Gingerbread Boy." If it's this version, the answer is "yes!" Although the story remains true to the original tale, Brett has added her own touches and a surprise ending. The gingerbread baby slyly eludes both humans and animals, including the wily fox. It takes a very clever little boy to outwit and catch the spicy treat. The illustrations are pure Brett and feature warm colors against a snow-white landscape. The expressive human and animal forms carry this rollicking tale along to its conclusion. Many of the pages have intricate frames depicting scenes from the story and cookie-shaped cutouts that will delight youngsters. Because this story has more characters than other versions, the author cuts some of the repetition to preserve the fast pace. Of course, the familiar refrain "Catch me if you can!" will have little ones joining in and rooting for the gingerbread baby. A delightful confection.-Barbara Buckley, Jericho Public Library, NY Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.