Clever paper engineering turns The Passover Seder by Emily Sper into interactive educational fun. Kids can rotate a seder plate laden with bitter herb, charoset, etc., to match each item with its English and Hebrew names (transliteration is provided); pull a tab to "spill" a drop of wine for each of the 10 plagues; and look behind flaps to find the afikoman. The text outlines the steps of a seder and adds bonus facts (e.g., why the Red Sea doesn't always look blue). Bold yet polished graphics ensure a strong visual appeal. (Scholastic/Cartwheel, $9.99 24p ages 3-7 ISBN 0-439-44312-1; Feb.)

Engaging as well as informative, Francine Medoff's 1983 The Mouse in the Matzah Factory receives all-new illustrations by Nicole in den Bosch. The story follows a mouse who lives in a wheatfield; when farmers approach the crop with special care—watching over it daily, building a fence around it, etc.—the mouse's curiosity is piqued and he stows away on the wagon that brings the wheat to a mill. As Medoff's plot incorporates the steps taken to preserve the integrity of handmade Passover matzoh, in den Bosch's watercolors eschew period detail to conjure up a generally old-fashioned community, where the streets are sunny and the bakers always smile. (Lerner/Kar-Ben, $6.95 paper 32p ages 3-8 ISBN 1-58013-048-8; Mar.)

Paperback series expand to cover the spring holidays. The Festival Time! series introduces Four Special Questions: A Passover Story and It's Party Time: A Purim Story, both by Jonny Zucker, illus. by Jan Barger Cohen. In each, cheery watercolors and a first-person narrative demonstrate how a child's family participates in the customary rituals, focusing on the most festive aspects ("Dad hides the Afikoman—a special half piece of matzoh—and we all search for it. I find it first, but we all get a present!"). Endnotes explain the religious and historical significance of each holiday. (Barron's, $6.95 paper each 24p ages 3-7 ISBN 0-7641-2267-3; -2268-1; Mar.)

Another paperback Holiday Alphabet Book, P Is for Passover by Tanya Lee Stone, illus. by Margeaux Lucas, features die-cut pages shaped to accentuate the cover art, an otherwise unexceptional rendering of a fancy goblet, egg, matzoh, etc., on a seder plate. The text pairs a rhyming stanza with each letter of the alphabet. Sample: "M is for matzah/ Flat bread made of wheat/ Quickly baked before fleeing/ It's crispy to eat!" (PSS!, $4.99 paper 24p ages 2-5 ISBN 0-8431-0238-1; Jan.)