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Review of All-of-a-Kind Family Hanukkah

All-of-a-Kind Family Hanukkah by Emily Jenkins; illus. by Paul O. Zelinsky Primary    Schwartz & Wade/Random    40 pp. 9/18    978-0-399-55419-3    $17.99 Library ed.  978-0-399-55420-9    $20.99 e-book ed.  978-0-399-55421-6    $10.99 “When darkness comes, it will be the first night of Hanukkah, 1912.” This original picture book based on Sydney Taylor’s beloved characters serves as a perfect standalone […]

Happy (C)Han(n)uk(k)a(h) 2018!

We all could use some light. And maybe some mindless dreidel spinning. And definitely some chocolate gelt, some sufganiyot, and some latkes. (Hot take: applesauce and sour cream are both the best.) Luckily, Hanukah/Chanukah/Hannukkah/the Festival of Lights begins this Sunday night! And luckily for me, unlike Gertie in this year’s beautiful, cozy All-of-a-Kind Family Hanukkah, […]

From the Horn Book family to yours…

…happiest of holiday seasons! We had a lovely time on our holiday outing yesterday. (Thanks, cruise director Cindy!) Our day started at the 22nd annual “Family Trees: A Celebration of Children’s Literature” exhibit at the Concord Museum. From the museum’s website: A love of books and reading is a lifelong treasure passed from adult to child, from generation […]

Happy Hanukkah from The Horn Book!

Hanukkah begins tonight — we hope your holiday is bright and bookish! Last year Rachel Kamin wrote, “Move Over, Shmelf…There Are Other Books on the Shelf.” She wasn’t kidding. If you’re looking for latke literature, there’s no shortage, from board books introducing the basics of Hanukkah to more complex stories. Here are some recent picture-book […]

On Rachel Kamin’s “Move Over, Shmelf…There Are Other Books on the Shelf” (from 2016)

The first night of Hanukkah is Wednesday, December 13, Tuesday, December 12 [thanks to Julie Rosemarin for alerting us to the error!], and if you’re tempted to add the story of Shmelf, the Hanukkah Elf to your family’s holiday traditions, well, read what librarian and anti-Shmelfer Rachel Kamin had to say last year in “Move […]

Review of A Hanukkah with Mazel

A Hanukkah with Mazel by Joel Edward Stein; illus. by Elisa Vavouri Primary    Kar-Ben    32 pp. 9/16    978-1-4677-8171-8    $17.99 Paper ed.  978-1-4677-8176-3    $7.99    g e-book ed.  978-1-5124-0936-9    $6.99 Artist Misha doesn’t have much, but he has enough milk to share with the cat he finds in his barn, whom he names Mazel (“luck”). He can’t […]

Move Over, Shmelf…There Are Other Books on the Shelf

This past fall I posted a critical review of picture book Shmelf the Hanukkah Elf on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, GoodReads, and Facebook. This caused quite a brouhaha. My review was quoted in the Tablet magazine article, “Stay in Your Lane, Elf,” by Marjorie Ingall, and I was interviewed (along with my colleague Kathy Bloomfield) […]

’Twas the eighth day of Hanukkah…

’Twas the eighth day of Hanukkah. (Chanukah? Well, it’s easy to celebrate, harder to spell.) The table was covered in relics of wax, and presents long-opened were sitting in stacks. The gelt was just wrappers. The dreidels were spun. The Maccabees’ moment was quite nearly done. Then off near the shelves, there arose such a […]

Recommended Hanukkah picture books

Hanukkah is here! These picture books, all published in the last several years and recommended by The Horn Book Magazine, will get you in a festive mood for the Festival of Lights. In Daddy Christmas & Hanukkah Mama, Sadie describes her family’s December holiday traditions. Daddy Christmas makes latkes for Santa while Hanukkah Mama hangs […]