Hoopes wrings every drop of poetry from each line, turning an outwardly dull idea into a celebration of life. Rotund Uncle Jon wakes up one morning with a deep, impractical need to bake an unbeatable bread, a bread that will summon animals from hibernation and wrest springtime from the wintry hills. The insistent rhymes and hard-hitting cadence ring like bells whose peals cannot be ignored, carrying readers along on flights of fancy as the smell of bread permeates the house and neighborhood, even entering the dreams of sleeping children: ""The sea sang silver,/and the skinny moon smiled/as they sailed away the morning miles,/and the gray sky ran to gold and red/with the perfect browning of the bread."" Such vivid wordsmithing hardly needs illustration, but Sneed pitches in with memorable oil paintings, puffed, rounded, and sculpted as if from dough. A soul-warming treat to leave readers salivating.