Drawing again on her midwestern, Russian-American heritage, Polacco tells how Grandma comforts a child who is afraid of approaching thunder by distracting her with the making of a cake. It's from scratch--including getting eggs from the hens and an unusual ingredient, tomatoes, from the garden--but they get the cake done by the time the storm arrives. Polacco's illustrations--combining folk motifs, softly modeled faces, generous white space, and wonderfully evocative glimpses of the weather--are her best yet. There's a bit of poetic license in the countdown (sound travels one mile in five seconds, not five miles), but never mind. The cake recipe (with minimal instructions) is included. A heartwarming vignette.