New Holiday Titles, Act Three:
I Have a Little Dreidel by Maxie Baum

h1 December 18th, 2006 by jules

i-have-a-little-dreidel.gifOver at Chicken Spaghetti, there was a recent post about Hanukkah titles. Oh my, what a great list with all kinds of wonderful contributions. Susan started it all with her personal holiday reading recommendation, many great kidlitosphere minds joined in, and then Susan even added an update to the post. If you’re looking for some highly-praised Hanukkah children’s titles from Those Bloggers in the Know, then this post is a great place to look.

And here’s a great new Hanukkah title: Maxie Baum’s I Have a Little Dreidel, illustrated by Julie Paschkis (published by Scholastic in October of this year). Baum has added some extra lyrics to this classic song, giving us a warm, exuberant look at an extended family’s celebration of Hanukkah (cousins, aunts, uncles — they’re all there). They make and then eat some latkes; they light the menorah; and they play the dreidel game, of course. Baum repeats the familiar verse (“I have a little dreidel, I made it out of clay . . .”) after each new stanza she’s added, and it’s seamlessly done. Paschkis’ illustrations are simply glowing and full of color and life in her folk-art-styled mixed media paintings with their bold, thick lines; she includes many details for the observant readers and depicts much love amidst these revelling family members. The text on the bottom of each page is emphasized in bold blue-and-white borders, and traditional-looking Jewish symbols in blue and white, such as the star of David, enhance the book’s look as well; overall, it’s a tightly-designed, visually-appealing book. And Baum includes a latke recipe, instructions for the dreidel game, and a song sheet at the book’s end.

Last, but not least, head over to A Chair, a Fireplace & a Tea Cozy to read this post/review of National Geographic’s new Holidays Around the World series, written by Deborah Heiligman.

Ciao for now. Here’s to latkes, which I’ve never tasted. But Eisha had some this past weekend and loved them, and so she will have to make some for me one day. Hint, hint.





6 comments to “New Holiday Titles, Act Three:
I Have a Little Dreidel by Maxie Baum”

  1. Jules,

    Thanks for the review. I love the art of Julie Paschkis–especially her illustrations in Yellow Elephant.

    Just thought I’d let you know I included a link to your review at Blue Rose Girls in my More Hanukkah Books to Share post today.

    http://bluerosegirls.blogspot.com/2006/12/more-hanukkah-books-to-share.html


  2. Yes, Julie Paschkis is excellent – I look forward to seeing this one.

    Erm, I’ll see if I can get the latke recipe. They are quite tasty. But I’m not very good with the frying without burning business.


  3. thanks for the link, elaine!


  4. My mother made delicious potato pancakes. She gave me her recipe. You know the kind–no exact amount of anything. I now have the recipe perfected to just the way my husband and I like them–thin and crispy and nicely browned. If you really want to indulge yourself, serve them with creme fraiche and caviar sometime.


  5. ‘Tis a fun book.


  6. [...] I Have A Little Dreidel by Maxie Baum, Scholastic (Winner: A Sydney Taylor Book Award 2007 Notable [...]


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