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The Tale of Oat Cake Crag (The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter #7)

3.91  ·  Rating Details  ·  769 Ratings  ·  100 Reviews
The latest tale in the "charming" (Publishers Weekly) Beatrix Potter series!

In the Lake District, noisy test flights of the new hydroplane are disrupting life in the village of Near Sawrey. Miss Beatrix Potter can barely hear herself think-which she needs to do for the new case she's just taken up. Her friend Grace Lythecoe has been receiving some anonymous letters, th
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published September 7th 2010 by Berkley (first published 2010)
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Community Reviews

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Feb 14, 2014 Ronna rated it it was amazing
I'm a Beatrix Potter fanatic, with a house full of her books, china figurines, and stuffed animals. Susan Wittig Albert has taken the history of Potter and the charming style of talking animals to create a beautiful series of mysteries featuring Beatrix in her home in The Lake District of England, with historical characters and her animal friends.

In this book, in 1911-12, a "flying bird" --the hydroplane-- is disturbing the tranquility of everyone in the district. Beatrix, and her fiancé, Will
Quite apart from the story of Beatrix Potter's life in the Lake District in 1912, I was particularly interested in the true story of Britain's first seaplane, "The Water Bird", in Windemere and Churchill creating the Royal Flying Corps, since my grandfather was an RFC pilot during World War I.

As to the novel, it was "just ok"; a very quick read, since I happily skipped all chapters about the animal characters, as well as all the paragraphs containing the author's nauseating comments, adverts for
Jun 15, 2014 C. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I hesitated two years to return to Susan Wittig Albert’s 2010 instalment, although I looked forward to it: “The Tale Of Oat Cake Crag”. I enjoy Beatrix Potter & Will Heelis as detectives. I love returning to Lake District, with which readers are made warmly familiar. I was glad she bypassed unnecessary characters this time and stuck to Beatrix’s friends, or personages this mystery needs. The noise of England’s first airplane didn’t yield a dilemma of interest to me but I appreciate and under ...more
"Miss Beatrix Potter has returned to Near Sawrey, seeking refuge from the bluster of London in the quiet of a mild March. But it is 1912, and elsewhere in England, Winston Churchill is said to be preparing for the possibility of war. In the Lake District, the country peace for animals and Big Folk alike has been interrupted by the test flights of a new flying machine: the hydroplane.

"At the same time, Beatrix's friend Grace Lythecoe has been receiving anonymnous letters, threatening her good nam
Laura Lee
Feb 15, 2014 Laura Lee rated it really liked it
Wish I lived in the Lake District. I'd like nothing more than talking animals! Love is in the air and engagements and marriages abound. The cat is out of the bag, Beatrix and Will are gonna tie the knot, tho not anytime soon. And the mystery of the mean letters is solved! And the poison pen writer is sorry and it won't happen again! Ah, simplicity.
Oct 15, 2015 Helen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the Lake District, noisy test flights of the new hydroplane are disrupting life in the village of Near Sawrey. Miss Beatrix Potter can barely hear herself think-which she needs to do for the new case she's just taken up. Her friend Grace Lythecoe has been receiving some anonymous letters, threatening her good name.

Now Beatrix must proceed quietly, so as not to arouse village gossip. And while her visit to Near Sawrey has proven to be anything but quiet, there is yet another piece of business
Nov 25, 2014 Susan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries
Recipe for one unusual book: Take one part mystery, one part biography, and one part fantasy with talking animals and a dragon. Mix together, and stir in a sprinkling of recipes. Add a Lake District setting with map.

This unusual cozy mystery/fantasy finds Beatrix Potter visiting her farm near Lake Windermere in 1912 and acting as a detective to solve a mystery puzzling a friend, while the population of the countryside, human and animal, protest the noisy intrusion of a new hydroplane. I enjoyed
The Hobbit
Book 7 of the Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter. It's 1912 and the serene atmosphere of Lake Windemere has been spoiled by the arrival of a hydroplane, whose loud engine angers the inhabitants and terrifies the animals. Both groups threaten to do something to stop this nuisance. Beatrix Potter has another mystery on her hands - who is sending poison pen letters to the newly engaged Grace Lythecoe? Then there was Mr. Baum's fall: he had been the chief financial investor in the airplane, but threate ...more
Aside from agreeing with people that the narrator is getting out of hand, there were a few plot-related things that didn't sit well with me (view spoiler), but I cut cozy mysteries more slack. This was still a relaxing book to unwind with before bed, ...more
Miss Potter has returned to Sawrey to escape her cantankerous parents, leaving her brother Bertram to care for them. The peace she seeks is quite cut up by the appearance of a new flying machine over Lake Windemere. This machine, known as a hydroplane, is supposed to be the latest thing in military weaponry but the villagers HATE it. The pilot flies all day disturbing everyone and driving everyone crazy, even the animals. The Professor is determined to find out what manner of animal this creatur ...more
Janet McCord
Dec 23, 2012 Janet McCord rated it it was amazing
Another sweet and delightful book in the Beatrix Potter series. I do love these books and even though some have criticized the intrusion of the narrator in the story or the fact that you have to stretch your imagination to include anthropomorphic animals those are the very reasons this series is so lovely. Susan Wittig Albert seems to have caught not only the spirit of the Beatrix Potter books but, I think, accurately and lovingly seems to have captured her voice as well. You could almost feel t ...more
Jan 20, 2012 Kathryn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, kindle
I have been chugging gently through this series for a few years now - I see I read the first one back in February 2006 and the rest at intervals since, getting through both the last two on train journeys up to Scotland. They are light, gentle reads that don't need too much concentration when there is lots of switching trains and hanging around in station cafes in between. The Tale of Oat Cake Crag is the seventh in the series and is essentially more of the same. Real biographical facts about Bea ...more
Melissa Robison
It was twee. It was sweet. Quite cozy. And, perfectly period. One or two devices were tweaking my senses though. I expected Beatrix Potter solving a mystery. Expected lyrical descriptions of the Lakes. Expected it to be oh so veddy British. Got all that. I didn't, although should have , expect speaking and/or mythical animals to be characters. Got it, dealt with it, by the end enjoyed it. Didn't expect jumps from third to second person narratives. Especially when the second person narration wa ...more
Jul 09, 2016 Wanda rated it it was amazing
This is the seventh and next to last of the Cottage Tales by Susan Albert. She has created such a charming and warm series with these stories somewhat loosely based on the life of Beatrix Potter. With the stories are actual historical figures but most of the characters both human and animal are fictional. Each story has at least one mystery to be solved. In The Tale of Oat Cake Crag, the mystery is the author of the poison pen letters being sent to the fiancee of the village vicar. She had asked ...more
Mar 25, 2015 Lisa rated it really liked it
This is the penultimate book in this series, with the final book (The Tale of Castle Cottage) to be published soon. I liked the people part of the book, and the village animal part, but not so much the "wild" animal part. And like the last book, the writer is addressing the reader too often and condescendingly talking about how we must go to another part of the story or how not all the details or stories can be in the book. No thanks. But I'll read the last one to finish out the people stories. ...more
Mar 08, 2013 Ann rated it really liked it
There is trouble brewing in Near Sawrey. An aeroplane is disturbing the peacefulness of the whole area and the villagers are up in arms. The owner of the hangar where the plane is stored is fouond unconscious on Oat Cake Crag with several broken bones. He is in a coma and unable to say what happened to him. The villagers hope that the plane will be grounded but no such luck. Then, the vicar is engaged to marry but his fiance, Grace Lythecoe, has been receiving anonymous letters warning her to ca ...more
This one has a little mystery about some anonymous letters that was easily solved by the reader at the beginning and the rest is just catching up with all your favorite Sawrey characters. It felt like it was just a bridge to the final book in the series when all the loose ends of their lives will be tied up. I'm finishing this series because I have them and they are summer light reading, but when I finish one I need to alternate with something a little more substantial.
I previously read this book from March 27 to April 6, 2014. I have been listening to the recorded books versions on the series, so decided to listen to this one too. I really like the way the narrator does the various character's voices, especially the dragon and the owl. She does the village women with the accents of the time. What a pleasure!
Dec 30, 2011 Michelle rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cozy-mystery
This is the seventh book in the Beatrix Potter cozy mystery series. Beatrix and the village are dealing with an intrusion from the modern world with the testing of a hydroplane at the local lake. While there are two mysteries within the book (the poison pen letters to Grace, who is about to marry, and the fall of the plane builder from Oat Cake Crag) the primary story is about changing relationships. Beatrix is having to deal with the rumors surrounding her secret engagement to William Heelis, a ...more
May 20, 2016 Natalie rated it it was ok
The one thing about this book that I cannot emphasize enough is you need to be mentally ready to read it. Ready for Winnie-the-Pooh like patronizing narration, cooking owls, writing badgers and census-taking dragons. I was aware going into this book that included Beatrix Potter herself and animals. I was not ready for animals that painted, read and philosophized. The story was cute. It was well enough thought out, and all the loose ends were tied up. There was no murder, and the ending was rathe ...more
Nov 19, 2014 Alisha rated it liked it
Same stylistic issues as I've noticed in previous books, but three stars because I still like the characters. I don't know if I've mentioned from any of the other books in this series, but one of the cool things is that each book has an appendix of recipes that were mentioned in the narrative, and some of them sound heavenly. Haven't tried any, though.

In this book Beatrix's neighbors are agitated because of the advent of a flying machine in the area. It's spooking the animals and disturbing the
Mar 03, 2012 Pam rated it liked it

I listened to the audio edition but don't see it here in the choices. The reader of this series adds much to its charm. This one took a bit more time to get into the time and characters, but once I did, I loved being back in the Lake District with Beatrix, the villagers, and animals. I especially like how the author has increased the role of the narrator in telling the story. The details in the lives of the animals that make them so human...their teas, books, and cozy furnishings...are delightfu
Judy Iliff
Sep 16, 2010 Judy Iliff rated it it was amazing
What could be better than a day spent sitting on the deck reacquainting yourself with Beatrix, Wil, Jeremy, Caroline, Grace, Rascal, and the villagers and animals of Lake District. I love these books and will be sad to see them end. Time, however, does march on both in real life and in the lives of the characters of Albert's Beatrix Potter series.

This particular book of the series deals with love, marriage, fear, misunderstandings, and the coming of WWI. I think what I like best is Albert's abil
Mar 03, 2014 Heather rated it liked it
This book mixed the relationships in the small village with England preparing for World War I with Germany. A mix of these elements shows how small towns were not immune from the changes that were about to occur even as the villagers railed against these changes.
Jun 03, 2015 MicheleStitches rated it liked it
I listened to the audio book version of this. It was a pleasant diversion. I found the history of the hydroplane in England interesting. This series is not great literature, but enjoyable little cozies.
Apr 24, 2015 Madelyn rated it liked it
Another story in The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter. I enjoy reading the historical facts that are related to the fictional story. There is also a Glossary at the end to help us with the dialect forms in the book. A very charming series.
Feb 16, 2015 Malia rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015-reads
These are taking me less and less time to read since I can skim the rehashes, the animal chapters, and the author's weird self-insertion, but I just need to know what happens to Beatrix!
Susan McDuffie
Oct 17, 2011 Susan McDuffie rated it really liked it
I've always been a big fan of Mrs. Tiggy- Winkle and so have greatly enjoyed Susan Wittig Albert's Beatrix Potter mysteries. They are cozy "Calgon Take Me Away" reads to a simpler time and a village life where letters were written at leisure with a fountain pen and paper and no blogging was required. I have, however, felt with the last couple of books in the series that the narrator's voice is becoming somewhat more present and this takes me out of the story a bit. I will have to re-read the fir ...more
Aug 22, 2016 Valeska rated it liked it
The tone of these books remind me of a warm blanket in winter. A bit of sweetness is nice every now and again. At the end of the book, there was a recipe for honey cake that I would like to try.
Kim Fournier
Aug 18, 2012 Kim Fournier rated it liked it
Never having read anything by or about Beatrix Potter before, I didn't know what to expect and have no frame of reference. This story is part of a continuing story, so you have to read the whole series - which is off-putting. I'm assuming that many of the things mentioned in the story about Ms. Potter are factual, which made it nicely biographical. I didn't even mind the talking animals and the dragon, being a fan of science fiction/fantasy. But the cutesy-wootsie, coy, snooty attitudes and lang ...more
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Other Books in the Series

The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter (8 books)
  • The Tale of Hill Top Farm (The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter, #1)
  • The Tale of Holly How (The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter, #2)
  • The Tale of Cuckoo Brow Wood (The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter, #3)
  • The Tale of Hawthorn House (The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter, #4)
  • The Tale of Briar Bank (The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter, #5)
  • The Tale of Applebeck Orchard (The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter, #6)
  • The Tale of Castle Cottage (The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter, #8)

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“But as it turned out, the two had a great deal in common, for both Bailey and Thackeray (named for the famous novelist William Makepeace Thackeray, author of Vanity Fair) were devoted bibliophiles who believed that "a book a day kept the world at bay," as Thackeray was fond of saying. Bailey was the offspring of a generation of badgers who insisted that "Reader" was the most rewarding vocation to which a virtuous badger might be called and who gauged their week's anticipated pleasure by the height of their to-be-read pile. (Perhaps you know people like this. I do.)” 4 likes
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