Sour Cakes

Karen Krossing

Anna Kwan

Heavy emotions meet a deep well of understanding in this uplifting sibling story

Two siblings wake up in two very different moods; the older one cheerful and lively, the younger feeling sad and irritable. The big sister negotiates and cajoles, tries everything she can think of to cheer her little sister up, but nothing works. She offers to go outside and play, but her sister refuses. She suggests they color a picture, but her little sister only likes the color gray. She proposes they bake sweet cakes, but her sister only wants sour ones.

It’s only when little sister’s gloomy mood reaches a boiling point that the older sibling tries a different tactic. She empathizes and enters the gloom with her sister, and offers up compassion along with a gray picture and a sour cake. Together, they navigate the little sister’s grim, messy feelings until the siblings are able to play.

Told in striking, conceptual illustrations, this story explores empathy, emotional acceptance, mental health, and acknowledging difficult feelings in a warm, accessible way.

Karen Krossing, Anna Kwan
Regular price $19.95 CAD
Regular price Sale price $19.95 CAD

SKU: 209419n0nn1nWWW | ISBN: 9781771473972

"Empathetically acknowledges children’s big feelings and engagingly models emotional health." - Kirkus Reviews

"This sensitive narrative shows the significance of empathy in meeting people where they’re at."

- Publishers Weekly

"An ode to sibling relationships and how, in particular, a sibling can lift you up when you are in the stormiest, heaviest of moods."

- Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast

"By accepting big, negative emotions without condemning them or dismissing them, this book is great for launching discussions about when and how to express moods and feelings." - School Library Journal

"Sour Cakes, a sensitive story, presents a great opportunity for discussing feelings, how we can express them, and the importance of empathy."

- Canadian Review of Materials

"A sensitive portrayal of acceptance and patience, accompanied by meaningful artwork that honors the feelings expressed by a little one on a bad day, as well as the loving acceptance of an older, tolerant sibling."

- Sal's Fiction Addiction

Ontario Library Association Top Ten Best Bets List, 2021

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Publication date

October 15, 2021

Number of pages



Social-Emotional Learning

Interest age

From 3 to 7