cover image The World's Birthday: A Rosh Hashanah Story

The World's Birthday: A Rosh Hashanah Story

Barbara Diamond Goldin. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt P, $13.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-15-299648-2

Daniel wants to celebrate the Jewish New Year in terms that a child can truly comprehend--a birthday party. He convinces his family of the rightness of his plan, even though his older sister Naomi pooh-poohs it. Daniel even invites Mr. Gutman, the baker--from whom he buys an immense birthday cake. That evening, under the bright stars of an autumn night, they sing ``Happy Birthday, World'' and the wind blows out the candles. Pointillist in style, Winter's fall-toned watercolors nostalgically place this loving tale in an earlier, Rockwellesque urban setting. In an afterword, Goldin notes appropriately that another name for this holiday is Yom Harat Olam, or The Day of the Birth of the World, ``commemorating the sixth day of creation, when God made man and woman and completed the physical creation of the world.'' Ages 4-8. (Aug.)