Review of Mendel’s Hanukkah Mess Up

Mendel’s Hanukkah Mess UpMendel’s Hanukkah Mess Up
by Chana Stiefel and Larry Stiefel; illus. by Daphna Awadish
Primary    Kalaniot/Endless Mountains    32 pp.    g
10/22    978-1-7350875-7-3    $19.99

Mendel loves Hanukkah but is prone to, and known for, making mistakes. He over-onions the latkes, for example, and uses sparklers in place of Hanukkah candles. “Oy, Mendel!” When Rabbi Klein asks him to drive the Mitzvah Mobile to spread the word about the big Hanukkah bash, everyone is nervous. Things go surprisingly well—at first. Details in the childlike illustrations give this community lots of personality; and Mendel’s personal journey very loosely mirrors the Hanukkah story in a lighthearted way. “A Brief History of Hanukkah,” a glossary, and some holiday activities are appended.

From the November/December 2022 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

Elissa Gershowitz

Elissa Gershowitz is editor in chief of The Horn Book, Inc. She holds an MA from the Center for the Study of Children's Literature at Simmons University and a BA from Oberlin College.

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