Waiting for the Crescent Moon: 5 Books About Eid al-Fitr

Eid al-Fitr, the end of Ramadan, is expected to fall around April 9 to April 11 in 2024. These picture books, along with a board book and an early reader, can be shared with young ones while they wait for the first appearance of the crescent moon that marks the end of the long month of fasting.

Eid al-Fitr, the end of Ramadan, is expected to fall around April 9 to April 11 in 2024. As Khan explains in the back matter of Noura's Crescent Moon, "On the twenty-ninth night of Ramadan, Muslims all over the world go to the darkest places and highest hills in the hopes of sighting the new moon. If the moon is sighted, Muslims celebrate Eid ul-Fitr, or the Festival of Breaking the Fast." Here are some picture books, along with a board book and an early reader, to share with young ones while they wait for the crescent moon.

 

Board Book

 EidTale: An Eid al-Fitr ­Adventure by Aaliya Jaleel. Abrams/Appleseed. ISBN 9781419769528. 
Baby-Toddler–Two siblings end Ramadan with the sighting of the Eid moon and anticipate the coming celebrations. The siblings recite morning prayers, put on brand-new clothes, buy sweets to deliver to the shelter, apply henna, and more. VERDICT Highly recommended for all collections.

 

Picture Books 

Looking for the Eid Moon by Sahtinay Abaza. illus. by Sandra Eide. Sleeping Bear. ISBN 9781534113091. 
PreS-Gr 2–Sara and Lulu excitedly wait for the beginning of Eid, when the crescent moon is spotted. The sisters plan to be the first to see the moon and leave their lantern and light decorated home to lay on a blanket under the cloud speckled sky and wait. VERDICT With softly hued illustrations, this gentle Muslim holiday story will introduce children to Eid celebrations and is a recommended purchase for holiday collections.

Noura’s Crescent Moon by Zainab Khan. illus. by Nabila Adani. Candlewick. ISBN 9781536224740. 
PreS-Gr 3–Noura and her family look for the new moon, which indicates the end of Ramadan and start of Eid ul-Fitr. They find the best spot on the hill, then unpack their dinner and wait to see if the moon makes an appearance. After some time, and finally accepting that the moon may not make an appearance, “the tiniest of tiny smiles” appears in the dark sky. VERDICT Khan’s writing combined with Adani’s dreamy, colorful illustrations makes this a great addition to library collections.

[Read: Fasting and Feasting: 6 Picture Books About Ramadan]

 The Most Exciting Eid by Zeba Talkhani. illus. by Abeeha Tariq. Scholastic. ISBN 9781338877816. 
K-Gr 2–It’s the new moon, and Safa is eagerly preparing for Eid al-Fitr. From henna-painted hands to festive decorations, Safa’s anticipation of Eid—and all the wonderful food and gifts it will bring—is palpable. VERDICT A wonderful introduction to the holiday for those familiar with the celebration or not. The underlying message emphasizes the importance of kindness and joy, making it a valuable addition to any home, school, or public library.

 

Early Reader

Rabia’s Eid by Rukhsana Khan. illus. by Debby Rahmalia. Random. ISBN 9780593706824. 
PreS-Gr 1–Rabia, a young girl with tan skin, wants to experience Eid just like the rest of her family, even though her sister says she is “too little” to fast. Khan explains Eid in a child-friendly manner, and grown-ups, too, will learn from her words. VERDICT A compelling exploration of Eid and the holiday’s cultural implications for young children.

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