cover image Hanukkah!


Roni Schotter. Joy Street Books, $14.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-316-77466-6

This glowing picture book focuses on one family's celebration of Hanukkah. It's the eighth and final night of the holiday and Mama, Papa and Grandma Rose are lighting the menorah, while the children--Nora, Dan, Ruthie, Sam and baby Moe--begin their own preparations for the family celebration. Nora and Dan make latkes, Ruthie makes decorations, Sam makes clay dreidels and tries to teach baby Moe how to say ``Hanukkah.'' The festive family meal is followed by songs, dances and gifts. Finally, as the evening ends and the candles burn low, Moe giggles ``Hanuk-kah!'' Schotter's somewhat bland text may confuse children with its odd blend of poetry and prose, but Hafner's watercolors of the cozy house filled with the warmth of love and family beautifully evoke this special celebration's pleasures. A one-page ``Story of Hanukkah'' and a glossary of Hanukkah words are included. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)