Here Is the World: A Year of Jewish Holidays

illus. by Susan Gal. 48p. glossary. Abrams. 2014. RTE $18.95. ISBN 9781419711855. LC 2013029463.
PreS-K—With a warm, sing-song patter and exquisite illustrations, this lovely picture book introduces young children to a joyous year of Jewish holidays and celebrations. Highlighting the essence of each season's offerings, the rhyming text moves smoothly from a summer baby naming to autumn's Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, and Sukkot, and so on through the Jewish year ("Here is the sukkah, its roof made of twigs. Here are some grapes, pomegranates, and figs."). Yet the true stars here are the richly hued, digitally collaged illustrations, which add depth and whimsy. These pictures contain such warmth and life that readers will want to jump in and join the festivities. Each spread displays an abundance of colors and textures that work perfectly to create distinctive moods for the various holidays, whether it's a gregarious Simchat Torah parade, the warm glow of a Chanukah menorah, or the freshness of an early spring day planting trees for Tu B'Shevat. Back matter includes a more detailed description of each holiday, crafts, and recipes. A distinctive and welcome addition.—Teri Markson, Los Angeles Public Library
Simple rhyming couplets describe the major Jewish holidays and life cycle events in a child's first year--from her naming ceremony to a summertime Shabbat--and connects them to the changing seasons. On double-page spreads, sumptuously colored charcoal and digital-collage illustrations capture the warmth and love in a family's celebrations. Further explanations of each holiday, crafts, and recipes are appended.

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