Project Description

Three Scoops and a Fig

Three Scoops and a Fig

by Sara Laux Akin
illustrated by Susan Kathleen Hartung

A young chef’s messy misadventures in the kitchen are quickly forgotten when she comes up with a special recipe all her own.

Scrumptious smells awaken Sofia and her little cat Figaro.

Downstairs, Sofia’s parents and older brother Mario are hard at work in the kitchen preparing food for the family’s Italian restaurant. No one makes tomato sauce like Papa or bread like Mama or pizza like Mario.

Today is extra-special because Nonno and Nonna are coming to visit, and Sofia is determined to help make something delicious for them. But mamma mia! She splatters Papa’s tomato sauce all over the kitchen, causes Mama’s bread to rise like a giant marshmallow, and flings Mario’s pizza dough into a ceiling fan! No one wants the help of such a little cook!

Sofia retreats with Figaro to the comfort of her favorite swing in the branches of a big, leafy fig tree. Then, with a whoosh! of wind and the plop! of a juicy fig, Sofia gets an idea for a very special treat for her beloved grandparents.

Author Sara Laux Akin’s affectionate and humorous story of a determined and creative chef paired with Susan Hartung’s delightful watercolor illustrations will appeal to gourmets of all ages.

Hardcover: $15.95
ISBN: 978-1-56145-522-5
Total Pages: 32
Size: 10 x 10
Language: English
Accelerated Reader
AR Quiz#: 138378
AR Reading Level: 3.2
AR Points: 0.5

F&P (Fountas & Pinnell)
F&P Level: N
F&P Grade: 3

Reading Counts
Reading Counts Level: 2.2
Reading Counts Points: 1


“A fun read-aloud.” ―School Library Journal

“Harung’s watercolors look a little like jigsaw puzzles; they’re evenly lit, with interlocking forms, muted colors, and figures that look like cotton dolls, all of which work to soften the impact of Sofia’s accidents in the kitchen…” ―Publishers Weekly

“…soft, watercolor illustrations bring a warm and cozy feel to this tale of independence and family love.” ―Grand Rapids Press

“…a graceful, satisfying text, filled with repetitive lines that read aloud well, and endearing, uncluttered line-and-watercolor pictures that depict both the exciting action in the kitchen and the love shared by Sofia’s family.” ―Booklist

Read More

“…In this simple yet warming picture book, the author celebrates the food traditions and close ties that family members share, and she shows young readers how their own creativity can make their wishes come true…” ―Through the Looking Glass

“…This story is infused with Italian customs and phrases. The illustrations are soft and pleasing to the eye and especially stand out with the book’s descriptive story. For any younger sibling or even only child who wishes they could help or not be just ‘too little’, this story will ring true in his or her heart…” ―University of Alabama Crimson Review blog

Read Less


Kansas State Reading Circle Recommended Reading List (primary) ―Kansas National Education Association 2011

Best Children’s Books of the Year ―Bank Street College of Education 2011

Meet the Author

Sara Laux Akin’s stories for children have appeared in Ladybug and Highlights magazines. She was inspired to write Three Scoops and a Fig, her first picture book, by her love of family, her parents’ cat Figaro, and the beautiful fig trees of California. She lives in Wisconsin. You can visit her website here.

Meet the Illustrator

Susan Kathleen Hartung holds a bachelor of fine arts degree from the School of Visual Arts. She has illustrated more than a dozen books for children, including Three Scoops and a Fig, One Leaf Rides the Wind, Dear Juno, and One Dark Night. She lives in Michigan. You can visit her website here.