Hanukkah Haiku

Overview

Here's a cultural crossover that pays off: a traditionally Japanese poetic form used to celebrate the eight nights of Hanukkah. There's one haiku for each night, and stepped pages add one candle to the menorah every time the page is turned. The simple poetry is set off perfectly by Karla Gudeon's vibrant, freewheeling artwork. A perfect gift, or good to reread each year, Hanukkah Haiku is a jubilant, unforgettable journey through the eight nights of Hanukkah.

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Overview

Here's a cultural crossover that pays off: a traditionally Japanese poetic form used to celebrate the eight nights of Hanukkah. There's one haiku for each night, and stepped pages add one candle to the menorah every time the page is turned. The simple poetry is set off perfectly by Karla Gudeon's vibrant, freewheeling artwork. A perfect gift, or good to reread each year, Hanukkah Haiku is a jubilant, unforgettable journey through the eight nights of Hanukkah.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal

PreS-Gr 1

Combining festive illustrations and a playful format, this title uses haiku to celebrate the eight nights of Hanukkah. While the selections address only the most basic ideas ("Four candles tonight./Grandma fries the latkes brown./We want applesauce"), each turn of the stepped pages brings fresh excitement as another lit candle and verse are revealed. Illustrations have a lovely folkloric quality in which Chagall-like figures, surrounded by richly colored flowers and stars, float across a fibrous tan background. Of particular note are the gorgeous patterned edges on the versos that mirror the tones of the newly exposed candle. Endnotes include an explanation of the candle blessings. A lovely addition.-Teri Markson, Los Angeles Public Library

Kirkus Reviews
Eight simple poems in Haiku form, one for each night of Hanukkah, tell of family traditions and the joy of lighting the candles together, playing dreidel, eating latkes and applesauce, receiving shiny coins or Hanukkah gelt, singing and dancing and, of course, hearing the story of the Maccabees. Without retelling the biblical story, Ziefert manages to capture the essence of this holiday completely and even includes instructions, in both Hebrew and English, for conducting the candle-lighting ritual. Text and format are seamlessly interwoven. Inspired by Chagall, Gudeon's intensely bright, detailed illustrations float and soar through the pages. As each candle is lit, the shortened, fanned pages open to reveal the activities told in the poems and the menorah as it appears that night, until the eighth and final night when the menorah is fully ablaze. Borders, backgrounds and endpapers bloom with symbols that surround Hebrew and English letters wishing the reader a happy Hanukkah and a celebrating family dancing with joy. An exuberant delight. (Picture book. 4-10)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781934706336
  • Publisher: Blue Apple Books
  • Publication date: 9/17/2008
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.80 (w) x 9.60 (h) x 0.45 (d)

Meet the Author

Harriet Ziefert has vivid childhood memories of lighting the Hanukkah candles with her maternal grandfather, who always took her hand in his as he held the Shammash.

Karla Gudeon's paintings and prints are joyful representations of life, love, family, and Jewish ritual and culture. Her artwork is displayed in galleries and distinguished collections throughout the country and abroad, and she created illustrated characters and backgrounds for an exhibit at the Jewish Museum in New York City. Karla lives in New York with Kevin, Sam and Max, and Lila Mae.

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