cover image Hurray for Ali Baba Bernstein

Hurray for Ali Baba Bernstein

Johanna Hurwitz. Morrow Junior Books, $11.95 (104pp) ISBN 978-0-688-08241-3

Once again, Hurwitz combines humor, realism and a keen perception of childhood feelings in a well-written sequel to Ali Baba Bernstein . Protagonist David Bernstein, an individualist preferring the exotic ``Ali Baba'' to what he considers the overused ``David,'' is now in fourth grade. He loves mysteries, occasionally creating them where none exist, to very funny effect. Each chapter offers a complete and self-contained episode, which means readers can pace themselves accordingly. The chapter in which Ali Baba and a second grader, Natalie Gomez, confront a man they think is Santa Claus and drill him as to why presents are not delivered to Jewish children, will strike a chord for many readers--they will cheer for Ali Baba, and for Hurwitz. Ages 8-12. (Apr.)