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Cover image for A long line of Cakes
A long line of Cakes
First edition.
New York : Scholastic Press, 2018.
Physical Description:
257 pages : map ; 22 cm.
Series title(s):
General Note:
"Two-Time National Book Award Finalist"--Dust jacket.
Aurora County, Mississippi, is only the latest stop on the Cakes' nomadic lifestyle, opening bakeries wherever they go; but Emma Alabama Lane Cake (only girl of the six Cake children) is sick of it, and determined not to form any friendships here because they will just disappear as soon as the family moves again--but Aurora County has other ideas, and so does a girl named Ruby Lavender who plans to teach Emma a thing or two about friendship.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 4.9 8 196041.

Accelerated Reader 4.9.


Call Number
J Wiles, D.

On Order



Two-time National Book Award finalist Deborah Wiles introduces us to the Cakes, a family of traveling bakers, who've just arrived in Wiles's legendary Aurora County, Mississippi.

Emma Lane Cake has five brothers, four dogs, and a family that can't stay put. The Cake family travels from place to place, setting up bakeries in communities that need them. Then, just when Emma feels settled in with new friends . . . they move again.

Now the Cakes have come to Aurora County, and Emma has vowed that this time she is NOT going to get attached to ANYONE or ANYTHING. Why bother, if her father's only going to uproot her again?

But fate has different plans. And so does Ruby Lavender, who is going to show Emma Lane Cake a thing or two about making friendship last.

Author Notes

Deborah Wiles is the author of the picture book Freedom Summer and three novels: Love, Ruby Lavender; The Aurora County All-Stars; and Each Little Bird That Sings, a National Book Award finalist. She has vivid memories of ducking and covering under her school desk during air raid drills at the time of the Cuban Missile Crisis. She also sang in the Glee Club, was a champion speller, and hated Field Day. Deborah lives in Atlanta, Georgia. You can visit her on the web at www.deborahwiles.com .

Reviews 4

School Library Journal Review

Gr 4-6-The Cakes are a family of itinerant bakers, always have been; always will be. They travel from place to place to set up their bakery, then pack up to head to the next locale that needs them. All that moving is getting to 11-year-old Emma Alabama Lane Cake. She's the only daughter in the Cake clan. Her five spirited brothers have each other and an easier time making friends in all the new places than Emma, who is more circumspect. When the family rolls into Halleluia, MS, at midnight, Emma feels that there's something special about the town. Though she longs for a friend, she just can't bear the thought of adding another person to her "friend atlas," only to roll it up to leave yet again. That possible new friend happens to be Ruby Lavender. Readers need not be familiar with any of the "Aurora County" novels to fall in love with the Cakes. The residents are just as quirky, with characters like Parting Shotz and a tutu-wearing dog named Eudora Welty. There's a lot of charm here, from the lovely language and strong sense of place to the often hilarious scenes between the Cakes themselves and the adventures the nosy, gossiping residents get up to. VERDICT This charming novel of belonging is a sweet addition to most collections.-Brenda Kahn, Tenakill Middle School, Closter, NJ © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Horn Book Review

This fourth book set in Aurora County, Mississippi, introduces the Cakes, a family of itinerant bakers who chaotically move from town to town--as Emma's father vaguely tells her, they come when needed and will stay "as long as it takes." Eight Cakes and multiple past characters (see, for example, Love, Ruby Lavender) create a large, quirky population, albeit one with few depths. (c) Copyright 2019. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Review

A small Southern town welcomes Emma and her family, self-styled "itinerant bakers."Eleven-year-old Emma Alabama Lane Cake, her five brothers, their four dogs, and their two eccentric parents travel from place to place because, as patriarch Leo Cake likes to remind his family, "There is so much need in the world, after all, and cake is one simple way to soothe it." The family never stays long, and they never visit the same town twice. However, when they enter Halleluia, the setting of two previous Aurora County novels (Love, Ruby Lavender, 2001, and The Aurora County All-Stars, 2007), it feels both familiar and enchanting. Emma is heartbroken about constantly having to leave her friends behind with each move. So, though the trees seem to whisper a welcome to her, she has decided not to make any new friends this time. Despite her best efforts, Emma is befriended by Ruby Lavender, who is "not very sweet" but pertinacious in her goodness, and together they hatch a plan to keep the family from moving again. The Cakes and Ruby are white, but Halleluia's population of oddball inhabitants includes warmly realized black characters, befitting the Mississippi setting. Wiles' nimble and buoyant prose speaks of yearning, the sweet blossoming of friendship, and the comfort of belonging.At turns ebullient and sober, this tale is as reassuring and tantalizing as the scent of freshly baked pastries. (author's note, recipes) (Fiction. 9-12) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Booklist Review

Emma Cake, her five brothers, and her parents itinerant bakers arrive in Aurora County, Mississippi, knowing that they won't be living there long before their father announces that it's time to hit the road again. But Emma's tired of moving, tired of leaving friends behind. Their new community welcomes the newcomers: the parents with their delicious cakes, the boys with their baseball skills, and Emma with her two talents soup making and friendship. After she befriends Ruby Lavender, they hatch a plan for keeping the Cakes in the community forever. This sequel to Love, Ruby Lavender (2001), The Aurora County All-Stars (2005), and Each Little Bird That Sings (2007) is written in third-person from an outsider's point of view. While those familiar with the previous books will remember many of the characters, readers new to the series will meet them, along with 11-year-old Emma. The writing is precise, colorful, and attentive to the nuances of people's longings and interactions. An enjoyable, sustaining chapter book.--Carolyn Phelan Copyright 2018 Booklist