Tamar's Sukkah (Revised Edition)by Ellie Gellman, Katherine Kahn
Tamar calls on her neighborhood friends to help her build a sukkah in this Kar-Ben favorite back by popular demand with full color illustrations.
School Library JournalK-Gr 2 Tamar is getting ready to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, a fall harvest holiday recalling the time when the Israelites wandered in the desert and lived in huts. Each child in the neighborhood helps her to decorate her sukkah, or booth. When it is decorated to everyone's satisfaction, the friends enjoy some refreshments together. Tamar realizes, ``A sukkah full of friends is quite right. It is exactly what a sukkah should be.'' This very simple text and three-color illustrations convey the fun of Sukkot at a child's level and tells something about cooperation and friendship as well. Ruth Shire, Mount Vernon Pubic Lib . , N.Y.
A joint neighborhood effort brings collaboration and cooperation between a young child and her older friends. When Tamar begins to decorate her sukkah, she realizes she is too small to hang the paper apples and too young to know how to write the blessing, so she enlists the neighboring children, each a little older than the one before, to help complete the preparations. Seven-year-old Danny hangs the apples; 9-year-old Shelly writes the blessing; 11-year-old Ari carries the table to the sukkah; young teen Rachel buys paper cups at the drugstore. This revision of the 1988 publication has maintained the original story and updated the bland three-color illustrations with full-color painted details. While the backyard scenes are filled with vibrant hues of a late summer garden, the features of the characters have, at times, an uneven, crude look. Birds and other animals of the yard are drawn with careful detail, yet Tamar looks like a different child in almost each scene despite her consistent red-haired pigtails. Still, the original message holds—a sukkah is not complete until it is enjoyed with friends. An acceptable update with a timeless message. (author's note) (Picture book. 3-5)
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