There are quite a few beginning baking books new but the Get Started series by Doring Kindersly takes the approach of starting small and ending big. Get Started: Baking begins with this note:
Build Your Course: This book is divided into broad
sections that allow you to build a three-stage course in baking. All areas are
covered, from quick cakes to artisan breads, with recipes that increase in
difficulty to develop your skill set and offer new challenges as you grow in
confidence and experience.
Read the full review of Get Started: Baking, and see examples of how the recipes are laid out on the Pastry Sampler blog.