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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Melissa Rife
While most American students could tell you about July Fourth and Halloween, few are educated on the festivals celebrated around the world. The "Festivals of the World" series educates about the cultures of other countries, and in this installment, Germany. Beginning with a quick overview of where Germany is and a list of occasions celebrated, the book goes into depth in explaining St. Martin's Day, Karneval, St. Nikolaus Day, Oktoberfest, and Walpurgis Night. Two double-page spreads are dedicated to each of the holidays, on which information is accompanied by colorful photographs. For each festival, the author explains the origin of the holiday and what takes place on that day. Accompanying each photo is a caption that not only tells what is happening in the picture, but provides added information that is of interest to the reader. For example, in the caption for a picture of a young woman in traditional Oktoberfest garb, the author explains where that young woman would have been wearing this outfit and why. Also accompanying each holiday's description is a box to inspire further thought: "Think about this." On the spread about Karneval, the book challenges the reader to think of a holiday in the United States that is similar to Karneval and asks how that holiday is different from what is celebrated in Germany. The basic information provided in the book is a great base for learning further about the culture of Germany. The information provided is very interesting and because it is about parties and festivals, might peak the interest of young students more than a typical history or culture book. It even provides details on how to create their own refreshments and decorations to accompany celebration of these occasions. Because it is a nonfiction book, it also includes a table of contents, and glossary. Part of the "Festivals of the World" series. Reviewer: Melissa Rife
School Library Journal
Gr 3-5Two books that feature five major festivals in their respective countries. Puerto Rico presents the Calle San Sebastin festival, the fiesta for Santiago Apostol, the celebrations that take place during the Las Navidades, and the patriotic festivals of Grito de Lares in Puerto Rico and Puerto Rican Day in the United States. Germany describes St. Martin's Day, Karneval, St. Nikolaus Day and Christmas, Oktoberfest, and Walpurgis Night. In both titles, the language is clear, simple, and descriptive, and the bright, colorful photographs correlate well with the texts, although occasionally a caption or the narrative will allude to something that is not depicted. Unfortunately, the organization is poor, as the festivals are not presented in chronological or alphabetical order. The craft activities and recipes that conclude both books are clearly described and include safety warnings. However, the rationale for the choice of the recipe offered is not apparent. Nonessential purchases but possibly of use as supplementary material.Linda Greengrass, Bank Street College Library, New York City
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781608701001
  • Publisher: Cavendish, Marshall Corporation
  • Publication date: 9/1/2010
  • Series: Festivals of the World Series
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 8 - 10 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.02 (w) x 10.08 (h) x 0.34 (d)

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