FICTION

Bahar, the Lucky

Reycraft. May 2020. 32p. pap. $7.95. ISBN 9781478869061.
COPY ISBN
PreS-Gr 4–The granddaughter of a rug weaver from Iran takes inspiration from his craft to compose her own gorgeous tapestry, part folktale and all heart. Bahar and her mother feel blessed that the girl’s rug weaving skills are enough to cover their daily portion of wheat and milk. One day, Bahar visits the town baths and lets out a laugh at a most inopportune moment—when the chief fortune-teller’s wife is on the premises. Bahar, paying attention to the wealth of the woman, decides her rug-weaving days are over and that she will try her hand at fortune-telling. With this decision comes a series of mishaps, misunderstandings, and mischief as Bahar fakes her way to the top. This will be a story hour favorite from its first reading, and the fact that Bahar continues to face ever higher stakes as she bemoans her bad decision will have listeners leaning in for every suspenseful moment. The slate blue, vivid red, and gold folkloric paintings provide a sumptuous backdrop in the beautiful city of Kashan, a setting that can be pored over almost endlessly.
VERDICT Kheiriyeh’s original tale is surprising and funny every step of the way, and sure to be a hit.

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