cover image Two New Years

Two New Years

Richard Ho, illus. by Lynn Scurfield. Chronicle, $18.99 (44p) ISBN 978-1-79721-281-4

Via two new year’s celebrations—Rosh Hashanah in the fall and Lunar New Year in the spring—a multicultural family celebrates a “shared year of double blessings” in this thoughtfully crafted picture book. Accessible text by Ho acknowledges differences between the observances (“One follows the Jewish calendar. One follows the Chinese calendar”) before delving into their similarities. Both new years “mark the passage of time,” “bring families together” (including bubbies, zaydies, ma mas, and yeh yehs), and “inspire delicious dishes” that symbolize shared wishes for the new year. Employing two distinctive backgrounds whose styles join as the pages turn, Scurfield’s luminous ink illustrations portray the family, including one pale-skinned Jewish and one Chinese parent, taking part in the celebrations, creating a visual melding of experiences that hint at what an author’s note calls “the joy of celebrating many worlds.” Back matter includes a detailed visual glossary. Ages 3–5. (Aug.)