El Deafo meets Inside Out and Back Again in this funny, emotional illustrated middle-grade debut about immigrating to Australia, being upstaged by an annoying little brother, baking cakes and overcoming loss.
When Jingwen moves to Australia, he feels like he’s landed on Mars. Making friends is impossible, since he doesn’t speak English, and he's stuck looking after his little brother Yanghao. But Jingwen knows how to make everything better. If he can just make all of the cakes on the menu of the bakery his father had planned to open—and complete the dream he didn’t have time to finish—then everything will be okay. Sure, he’ll have to break his mother’s most important rule about not using the oven when she’s at work, keep his little brother from spilling his secret, and brush up on his baking skills, but some things are worth the risk.
In her debut novel, Remy Lai captures with humour and heart, what it means to want desperately to belong and just how powerful one wish can be.
Remy Lai studied fine arts, with a major in painting and drawing. She was born in Indonesia, grew up in Singapore, and currently lives in Brisbane, Australia where she writes and draws stories for kids, with her two dogs by her side. Pie in the Sky is her debut middle-grade novel.
The light-hearted and heart-warming approach never diminishes the seriousness of the dilemmas faced by Jingwen’s family. Pie in the Sky is a wonderfully timely book about understanding, tolerance and kindness.
CBCA: Reading Time
This book includes many things that animate my reading palate not least of which are the multiple cake varieties and le Petite Prince (The Little Prince) references. It is a story that examines brotherly love and broken hearts layer by layer then slathers it all with scrumptious messy globs of butter cream; the kind that glues dreams altogether. Sink your teeth into it as soon as you can.
Dims Write Stuff
Looking at immigration, family and grief, this is an exceptionally sweet book, featuring exceptional sweets. Highly recommended for ages 9+.
This book will be loved by a wide range of readers, including keen graphic novel readers, budding cooks, and readers who love stories that make them laugh and make them feel in equal amounts.