Chicken Sunday

( 7 )

Overview

After being initiated into a neighbor's family by a solemn backyard ceremony, a young Russian American girl and her African American brothers' determine to buy their gramma Eula a beautiful Easter hat. But their good intentions are misunderstood, until they discover just the right way to pay for the hat that Eula's had her eye on. A loving family story woven from the author's childhood.

"Polacco has outdone herself with these joyful, energetic illustrations, her vibrant colors even richer and more intense than ...

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Overview

After being initiated into a neighbor's family by a solemn backyard ceremony, a young Russian American girl and her African American brothers' determine to buy their gramma Eula a beautiful Easter hat. But their good intentions are misunderstood, until they discover just the right way to pay for the hat that Eula's had her eye on. A loving family story woven from the author's childhood.

"Polacco has outdone herself with these joyful, energetic illustrations, her vibrant colors even richer and more intense than usual, while authentic details enhance the interest. A unique piece of Americana." —Kirkus Reviews, pointer review

"In this moving picture book, the hatred sometimes engendered by racial and religious differences is overpowered by the love of people who recognize their common humanity." —Booklist, starred, boxed review

"The text conveys a tremendous pride of heritage as it brims with rich images from her characters' African American and Russian Jewish cultures—A tribute to the strength of all family bonds." —Publishers Weekly, starred review

To thank Miss Eula for her wonderful Sunday chicken dinners, three children sell decorated eggs to buy her a beautiful Easter hat.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Polacco--in the role of young narrator--introduces another cast of characters from her fondly remembered childhood. Brothers Stewart and Winston often invite the girl to join them and their Gramma Eula Mae--whose choir singing is ``like slow thunder and sweet rain''--at the Baptist church and to come for Miss Eula's bountiful chicken dinner. When the children hear Miss Eula longing for the fancy Easter bonnet in Mr. Kodinsky's hat shop, they plot to raise the money to buy it for her. Sharing her own family tradition, the narrator teaches the boys how to decorate Russian ``pysanky'' eggs, that both turn a profit and touch the heart of the crotchety immigrant hatmaker. Without being heavy-handed, Polacco's text conveys a tremendous pride of heritage as it brims with rich images from her characters' African American and Russian Jewish cultures. Her vibrant pencil-and-wash illustrations glow--actual family photographs have been worked into several spreads. Other telling details--Russian icons, flowing choir robes, Mr. Kodinsky's concentration camp tattoo--further embellish this moving story--a tribute to the strength of all family bonds. Ages 4-8. (Mar.)
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
In this warm story the young Patricia and her two African-American friends want to buy a hat for the boys' grandmother to thank her for all of the wonderful Sunday dinners with her succulent chicken. When they go to the hat shop, other kids have just plastered the store with eggs. The ugly head of prejudice and racism against the Jewish storekeeper raised. Though blameless the kids must help out in the shop to repay the damage and insult. In the end the shopkeeper gives them the beautiful hat in the window that grandmother has eyed. Polacco demonstrates in the story and her art, that love and kindness can overcome evil and prejudice. This book, like Rechenka's Eggs, contains pictures of beautifully decorated Ukrainian-style Easter eggs, reflective of the many years Polacco spent studying art in the United States and Australia. (She has a Ph.D. in Art History with special emphasis on Greek painting and iconographic history.)
Children's Literature - Jan Lieberman
Ms. Polacco spins another heartwarming story from her tapestry of real-life tales. Set in Oakland in a racially diverse neighborhood we watch eagerly as Stewart, Winston, and Trisha try to find a way to thank the boys' gramma, Miss Eula, for those scrumptious Sunday dinners. They decide to pool their money to buy her the Easter hat she admires. What can they do to earn enough for the hat? Clue: Pysanky eggs play an important part. Ms Polacco's paintings recreate the time period of the early '60's perfectly down to the photos on Mill Eula's dining room bureau. This is one of those special books that light up one's life.
School Library Journal
Gr 1-3-- Despite the differences in religion, sex, and race, Winston and Stewart Washington are young Patricia's best friends, and she considers their grandmother, Miss Eula, a surrogate since her own ``babushka'' died. On Sundays, she often attends Baptist services with her friends, and Miss Eula fixes a sumptuous fried chicken dinner with all the trimmings, after stopping to admire the hats in Mr. Kodinski's shop. The youngsters hope to buy her one, but when they approach the merchant looking for work, he mistakenly accuses them of pelting his shop with eggs. To prove their innocence, the children hand-dye eggs in the folk-art style that Patricia's grandmother had taught her and present them to the milliner. Moved by the rememberance of his homeland, the Russian Jewish emigre encourages the children to sell the ``Pysanky'' eggs in his shop and rewards their industry with a gift of the hat, which Miss Eula proudly wears on Easter Sunday. Polacco's tale resonates with the veracity of a personal recollection and is replete with vivid visual and visceral images. Her unique illustrative style smoothly blends detailed line drawing, impressionistic painting, primitive felt-marker coloring, and collage work with actual photographs, resulting in a feast for the eyes as filling as Miss Eula's Chicken Sunday spreads. The palette is equally varied, while the application of color is judiciously relieved by sporadic pencil sketches. An authentic tale of childhood friendship. --Dorothy Houlihan, formerly at White Plains Pub . Lib . , NY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780698116153
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 2/28/1998
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 43,116
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.00 (w) x 10.22 (h) x 0.13 (d)

Meet the Author

Patricia Polacco
Patricia Polacco
Patricia Polacco lives in Union City, Michigan.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 7 )
Rating Distribution

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(6)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 28, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Not just an Exceptional Easter or Sunday story-a story for any day of the week!

    Chicken Sunday is my favorite Patricia Polacco story and it never fails to bring tears to my eyes, as most of her stories are emotional and precious. Polacco writes about stories she has experienced or are in her family history; the charming illustrations are hers as well. Chicken Sunday is a story of three cultures that you don't notice are three DIFFERENT cultures. The characters interact and blend as smoothly as Grandma's Chicken Sunday suppers. Oh the love you will feel as you read this story. The children for their Grandma, the Grandma for her "baby dears". I've read it many times to hundreds of baby dears. Maybe someday they will read it to their own baby dears! I met Polacco once and told her Chicken Sunday was my favorite of all her books. She smiled at me and replied, "How kind of you." I thought what a lovely response. You will find her stories unforgettable and ageless.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    For Over a Dozen Years

    Patricia Polocco's wonderful rendering of children's love for a neighbor moves me every Easter. I have read this as a room-mother to my daughter's classes on an annual basis and continue to share it with children in my church now that the girls are grown. I love the ethnic diversity. I love the story. I love the hats. I love the storekeeper. And most of all I love the children's generosity. This is a feel-good book that communicates kindness on many levels and is well worth sharing with the children in your life.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 27, 2010

    CSD Loves the book

    Excellent

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  • Posted November 17, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I love this story!

    This is a sweet story of a grandmother who loves her children and little Patricia so much that she allows them the opportunity to show members of their community what happens when you put your heads together to solve a big problem. They enjoy the love that is given to them by Miss Eula so much that they want to buy her a hat for Easter Sunday but they don't have the money. Because she treates them to a delicious meal of fried chicken after they've churched it up at Sunday service, they want to honor her with a special gift. Mr. Kodinski's Hat Shop is where they want to buy it from, but something happens to make him think they vandalized his shop. This is a sweet realistic fiction story that is great to teach mood, theme and character analysis. The illustrations are warm and bright.

    Since I teach 4th grade, it is the perfect touch tone text to explain cultural diversity and extended family love.


    Andrea St. John
    4th grade teacher
    Cannon Road ES
    Silver Spring, Maryland

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 25, 2007

    Chicken Sunday

    Chicken Sunday By: Patricia Polocco This book was okay, but not great. It just wasn¿t a type of book you would love so much you would be happy to read it each day, but it was still a good book. It had great word choice, and I was shocked with the surprise near the end of the book. I advise you to read this book! The story line is about Patricia Polacco as a little girl. She practically lives with her next-door neighbors. They are 2 boys who live with their Aunt Eula, but the two boys and Patricia call her Grandma. Each day after church, they pass a hat shop, and each day grandma says ¿Oh lord, how I would love to have that hat there in the window!¿ The trio wants to get her that hat. ¿Maybe we could get a job at Mr. Kodinski¿s shop?¿ Patricia suggests.¿ The children decide work for Mr. Kodinski. One day the children go to the shop and see boys running away from the door, which is covered in eggs. Mr. Kodinski is coming out of the shop!!! Will he think it was the kids? Will he tell Aunt Eula? Find out when you read Chicken Sunday!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2006

    The True Meaning of Freindship

    This book is truely golden. Patricia shows a part of her childhood that makes her so speacial. After seeing the hat Miss Eula wants Patricia and her two suposedly brothers go out and try to raise money to buy the hat for easter. WHen they stumble upon a job they are accsed of something they did not do. But after they give a present to the shop owner thatmis took them and they end up buying the hat. The shop keeper plays a very important role and survived during the holicost!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 30, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews

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