The Donut Chef

Book review by
Patricia Tauzer, Common Sense Media
The Donut Chef Book Poster Image
Deliciously illustrated Seuss-like tale.

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age 18+
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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

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Violence & Scariness

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this simple rhyming Golden Book, much like a Dr. Seuss classic, is both silly and instructive. Kids and parents alike will love the wordplay, the playful yet sophisticated illustrations, and a lesson that will ring true to donut lovers in particular.

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What's the story?

When two donut chefs begin to compete for business, they challenge each other to bake more and more outlandish creations. In the end, it takes a little girl and wish for something simple to bring the original donut chef back to earth, and make him a real success.

Is it any good?

Kids will enjoy the clever rhymes that play like a Dr. Seuss creation; even more, they will be fascinated by the illustrations, which are out of this world. 

Anyone who has devoured a fresh, warm glazed donut knows exactly why Debbie Sue makes her request, and why, of all the exotic flavors the chef creates, "most folks love a glazed the BEST!" No surprise there. Theirs is a story about the absurd lengths to which competition can drive us, and even more importantly a lesson in why keeping things simple is often best.

Created using Photoshop, the scenes are bright, geometric, and sophisticated. They are as at home here in a children's book as they might be on the cover of the New Yorker. Bob Staake is a prolific and cleverly innovative artist who has created an amazing portfolio of work.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about donuts, of course. Which is your favorite and why? What was the donut chef's goal in the first place? What happened when the second baker moved next door? Why do you think they each tried to come up with one new kind of donut after another? How did that change their business? How come they forgot about the glazed donut, and how much people liked it? How do you feel about exotic food? Or do you agree with Debbie Sue?

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