The Night of the Moon: A Muslim Holiday Story

Overview

Yasmeen, a seven-year-old Pakistani-American girl, celebrates the Muslim holidays of Ramadan, "The Night of the Moon" (Chaand Raat), and Eid. With lush illustrations that evoke Islamic art, this beautiful story offers a window into modern Muslim culture—and into the ancient roots from within its traditions have grown.
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Overview

Yasmeen, a seven-year-old Pakistani-American girl, celebrates the Muslim holidays of Ramadan, "The Night of the Moon" (Chaand Raat), and Eid. With lush illustrations that evoke Islamic art, this beautiful story offers a window into modern Muslim culture—and into the ancient roots from within its traditions have grown.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

BOOKLIST, STARRED REVIEW
...a vibrant, visually exciting treatment .the upbeat tone of the writing is matched by Paschkis\' lively, jewel-like art...

PUBLISHERS WEEKLY
Sweet and visually striking, this is a good choice both for children who celebrate these holidays and for others seeking a bridge to their culture.

KIRKUS REVIEWS
Warm, lovely, homey.

Publishers Weekly

A new moon is in the sky, and Yasmeen, identified on the jacket as a seven-year-old Pakistani-American, knows that it is time for the holidays of Ramadan and Eid. As Khan (How to Say What You Mean, Mean What You Say, and GetWhat You Want) and Paschkis (Glass Slipper, Gold Sandal) follow Yasmeen through all the festivities (a family backyard barbecue, a visit to a mosque, a henna hand-painting), they portray Muslims as another vibrant thread in the great American tapestry, emphasizing the bonds of family, community and spirituality rather than details of a particular belief system (for example, Yasmeen's mother explains that the customary fasting "helps me remember to be grateful for the food I have and to be more patient"). Paschkis, borrowing from the arabesque motifs and jeweled colors of Islamic art, portrays the Muslim community as warm, welcoming and multi-ethnic (for non-Muslim youngsters, the idea that Islam is practiced by many different kinds of people may be revelatory). Sweet and visually striking, this is a good choice both for children who celebrate these holidays and for others seeking a bridge to their culture. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
With young Yasmeen we see the first crescent of the moon marking a new month in the Islamic calendar and the beginning of the celebration of the month of Ramadan. Each day the adults fast from sunrise to sunset. Yasmeen and her family go to many parties with family and friends. They bring food to the mosque to share with the less fortunate. When the moon has gone from full to none, it is the Night of the Moon. Ramadan is over, and the next day is the holiday of Eid, a time for celebration, gifts, and new clothes. Yasmeen's special surprise is a telescope, through which she can see the wonder of the moon. Paschkis displays the influence of Islamic tiles in her decorative motifs. Her pages are covered with heavily stylized pictures of camels, mosques, ceramic vessels, flowers, all surrounding framed blocks of text and illustrations of the events in the text. There is a cloisonne look to the figures and objects painted with gouache and permanent masking medium. Yasmeen's exuberant joy is clear throughout. Notes by the author add information about the holiday; a glossary includes pronunciation. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal

Gr 2-4

The new crescent appears, marking the first day of the month of Ramadan. Yasmeen, a seven-year-old Pakistani-American girl, is confused because "it's only the seventeenth." Her mother explains that the Islamic calendar is a lunar calendar. At sunset, the family enjoys a special dinner. The following week, her family prepares food to be distributed at a mosque. One night, Yasmeen sees that the moon is full, and realizes that the observance is half over. Other events include a family barbecue and a celebration of the "Night of the Moon" at the community center, where stalls sell clothes, jewelry, toys, snacks, and gifts. Then Ramadan is over, and the next day is Eid. Yasmeen awakes to her brother's greeting of "Eid mubarak ," and the children receive gifts of money. Paschkis's beautiful paintings incorporate Islamic tile art, adding to an authentic sense of the culture. Suitable both for independent reading and reading aloud, this book also serves as an excellent resource for teachers and librarians.-Fawzia Gilani-Williams, Oberlin Public Library, OH

Kirkus Reviews
Yasmeen's mother points out the little sliver of the crescent moon to remind her of the new month that means Ramadan, the holiest month of the Muslim year. As Yasmeen moves through the month and the moon waxes and wanes, she learns the lessons of the celebration. Khan deftly weaves information about the culinary and cultural traditions of Ramadan and Eid with the little girl's love of her family and growing understanding of her role in the outside world. The gentle and reflective text reflects the simple arc of the month; it's Paschkis's stunning gouache paintings that make this book so memorable. Deep, saturated blues and greens remind readers that Ramadan is a celebration that takes place after sunset. When the Night of the Moon celebration occurs indoors at the community center, the reds and oranges burst with happiness. Specialized vocabulary is signaled in the text with an Arabic-flavored display type that leads readers to the terms' definitions in the back and complements the framed panels bordered with Eastern motifs. Warm, lovely, homey. (author's note) (Picture book. 4-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780811860628
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books LLC
  • Publication date: 9/1/2008
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 314,543
  • Age range: 6 - 9 Years
  • Lexile: 780L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.10 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Hena Khan is a Pakistani Muslim-American who has written numerous books for children. She lives in Rockville, Maryland.

Julie Paschkis is an artist and illustrator living in Seattle, Washington.

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