A Persian Passover

Kalaniot. Mar. 2022. 32p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9781735087566.
PreS-Gr 2–While racing home with the family’s matzoh for Passover, Ezra trips and all of the unleavened bread lands in a puddle. He and his younger sister, Roza, try to purchase more in the market, but with the Jewish holiday starting shortly, all of the vendors are sold out. The children arrive home with their heads hanging low, until their friendly and generous neighbor Mrs. Pirnazar offers to share her matzoh with them. When they find out that she will be spending the holiday alone, they invite her to join their family for the Passover seder. Delightful collage illustrations dominated by red, beige, and turquoise playfully depict a Jewish family in 1950s Iran. Roza helps her mother make the unique Persian charoset salad for the seder (the recipe is appended), and the family enjoys their meal sitting on the floor with all of the ritual food and items beautifully arranged on the sofreh (fabric). Readers will almost smell the parsley, mint, tarragon, and dill wafting through the bustling market. An author’s note with additional information about Passover and the Jews of Persia is included, along with a helpful glossary of Hebrew and Persian terms. With so many picture books portraying the Jewish communities of Eastern Europe and North America, this lovely new offering, along with Barbara Diamond Goldin’s A Persian Princess, celebrates the diversity of Jewish culture and observance around the world, as well as illustrating the Jewish value of welcoming guests.
VERDICT A welcome addition to the holiday bookshelf.

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