Simple text and pictures describe the history of Halloween and how it is celebrated.
Children's LiteratureThe date and a brief reference to ancient cultures that celebrated harvest festivals around this time are noted as the roots of Halloween. Nothing is really mentioned about the religious significance of All Hallows Eve, which became Halloween. Young readers will learn that Halloween symbols include black cats, witches, ghosts, jack-o'-lanterns, and the colors orange and black. Today kids celebrate by dressing in costumes, attending parties or going around the neighborhood trick-or-treating¾all of which is depicted in full-color photographs. The concluding pages offer a words to know section, mini bibliography and reference to Internet sites. There is an index/word list (114 words, early-intervention level: 15). Part of the "Holidays and Celebrations" series. 2002, Pebble Books/Capstone Press, $14.60. Ages 5 to 7. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
School Library JournalK-Gr 2-Each of these small-format titles briefly notes the origins, customs and rituals, food, and symbols of the holiday. A colorful photograph or reproduction faces one to three lines of simple text. Neither book goes into any great detail on its subject. For example, while the author mentions the symbols of these special days, she does not explain their significance or origin. The first title states, "Halloween has many symbols. A black cat, a witch, and a ghost are Halloween symbols." In Valentine's, the origin of the celebration is considered in two lines, "No one is sure how Valentine's Day started. Some people believe the holiday honors a priest named Valentine." The repetitive words and phrases and visual clues in the illustrations will aid emerging readers. Three age-appropriate Internet sites are suggested in each book. These volumes would work best in classroom collections as beginning readers or introductions to the attributes of nonfiction books. Libraries looking for titles on holidays should look elsewhere.- Lynn Dye, Keheley Elementary School, Marietta, GA Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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