By Emily Jenkins
Illustrated by Sophie Blackall
Schwartz & Wade Books, 2015. Picture Book
Do you want a fun activity to do with your children this weekend? Check out this book. It presents four different families and shows how they each make a dessert called Blackberry Fool. The first family, from 18th century England, picks the berries, milks the cow, whips the cream with a whisk made of twigs, and cools it in an ice house. The next family are slaves in 19th century America. They use a wire whisk, and have to serve their masters before they eat, but the dessert is the same. The 20th century family has an ice box and a rotary mixer. The modern family buys their berries at a grocery store, and mixes it with a food processor, but each time the dessert is delicious. The author includes the recipe for Blackberry Fool in the back of the book. Both author and illustrator have historical notes about how they carefully researched to make the book as accurate as possible. Blackall even used blackberry juice in some of the illustrations and to color the end pages. This is a well thought out and charming glimpse at history.