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Bauer, Joan.
New York : Viking, 2011
IL 5-8, RL 5.0
ISBN 0670012823

(3 booktalks)
Click on the book to read Amazon reviews
Booktalk #1

Foster McFee is on the run.  She and her mother have had to pack up in the middle of the night and leave to get away from her mother's abusive boyfriend.  All she can take is a pillowcase filled with mementos from her late father.  And her determination to succeed in spite of her severe learning disability.  When they stop, they find themselves in a small town in West Virginia.  Living in a borrowed trailer, the two find the community welcoming and their hopes rising.  Foster begins to do what she loves most -- bake.  Her dream is to have her own cooking show on the Food Network but for now, her baked goods are selling like crazy at Angry Wayne's Bar and Grill while her mother pursues her dream of becoming more than a back up singer.  Another wonderful story by Joan Bauer.

Booktalk #2

Twelve year old Foster McFee and her mother flee Memphis, an Elvis impersonator and an abusive relationship but mistakenly leave behind her most prized possession – the pillowcase holding all memories of her dad who was killed in Iraq. Settling in the town of Culpepper, West Virginia, which is facing its own hard times, mom and daughter make quick friends aided by Foster’s baking talents. Macon, with his plans to become a young documentary filmmaker, befriends Foster as she aims to become a famous television chef like Sonny Kroll. She manages to tackle life’s challenges through her amazing baked goods. But Foster now has to face her biggest challenge. She can’t read! Her baking turns out to be a lifesaver and her key to success while inspiring others – one cupcake at a time!   (Booktalk from the Louisiana Young Readers’ Choice Committee for 2014 Louisiana Young Readers’ Choice nominee)

Booktalk #3

 Who likes to eat cupcakes? Yeah, that’s what I thought. Ok, now here’s another question. Who likes to bake cupcakes? Well, that is what 12-year-old Foster McFee loves to do. In fact, her dream is to one day have her very own cooking show on the Food Network, just like her favorite chef, Sonny Kroll. That’s a big dream, but maybe it will happen. Foster does make delicious cupcakes. Everybody says so. But right now, she and her mom are down on their luck. They have left Memphis, Tennessee in order to escape her mom’s creepy, Elvis-impersonator ex-boyfriend. And now they have ended up in Culpepper, a tiny town in West Virginia, where they don’t know anyone. At first, Foster has a hard time figuring out how to fit in, but soon enough she finds a way to use her baking skills. She even makes some friends. But when someone figures out what Foster can’t do, she’s ready to leave Culpepper for good. But with the help of the town’s strangest and most famous resident, Foster gets the help she needs and decides to stay. And it’s a good thing, too, because Foster’s cupcakes just might save the day. (Booktalk by Elizabeth Daigle for 2014 Louisiana Young Readers’ Choice nominee)

SUBJECTS:     Baking -- Fiction.
                        Cupcakes -- Fiction.
                        Country life -- West Virginia -- Fiction.
                        Literacy -- Fiction.
                        Single-parent families -- Fiction.
                        West Virginia -- Fiction.

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