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A Year Full of Holidays
     

A Year Full of Holidays

by Susan Middleton Elya, Diana Cain Bluthenthal (Illustrator)
 

Nell's birthday is in August, and as soon as it's over, she starts to feel as though her next one is never going to get here. But then her mom reminds her that the year is packed with different reasons to celebrate, as each month in the calendar brings another holiday-from Labor Day to New Year's to the Fourth of July. And when there's always a different special

Overview

Nell's birthday is in August, and as soon as it's over, she starts to feel as though her next one is never going to get here. But then her mom reminds her that the year is packed with different reasons to celebrate, as each month in the calendar brings another holiday-from Labor Day to New Year's to the Fourth of July. And when there's always a different special day just around the corner, the time between birthdays really flies!

With a bouncy text and sweet, stylishly retro illustrations, this one-stop holiday book is guaranteed to be enjoyed all year long.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Heidi Hauser Green
Nell turns five in August with a terrific birthday party. The day is hardly over when she wants another one. "When'll my birthday come back?" she asks. Her mother reassures her that every month has one (or more) holiday that will help pass the time until Nell's next birthday. And so the countdown begins! September brings Labor Day, simply described as a day "when workers can rest" with "a big barbecue!" Talk on the first day of school leads into thoughts of Halloween, which leads to anticipation of Thanksgiving. Next up? Christmas. New Year's. Valentine's Day. March brings St. Patrick's Day, and April (not altogether correctly) boasts Easter. May is tagged with Mother's Day and Memorial Day, when Nell is impressed by her grandfather's war medals. June is Father's Day and July the Fourth of July. Finally, it i s August, and Nell is ready to celebrate another birthday, wishing "time went faster and the holidays came quicker, that the presents were bigger, and the frosting was thicker!" It i s a realistic wish for a six-year-old, perhaps, but it's certainly not filled with the sense of appreciation for all the year's holidays that one might hope would result from this book. Many readers will take issue with the exclusion of Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and the Eastern Orthodox Christmas. Still, its quick rhyming text and colorful illustrations may draw the attention of youngsters working to understand the year-long calendar with its many celebrations. Reviewer: Heidi Hauser Green
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2—Young Nell celebrates her August birthday and that night, she asks, "When'll my birthday come back?" "The holidays," said Mom," will help you keep track." Thus begins a year's worth of days that the child and her family celebrate. Labor Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, etc., are accompanied by rhyming couplets that describe how the holiday is observed. A multicultural cast of characters in Nell's community takes part in the festivities, helping to make them joyful celebrations. Though Nell's family doesn't observe every holiday—for example, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, and Passover aren't included—the months bring other special days that will pertain to all readers, such as Mother's Day, Memorial Day, and the 4th of July. Cheerful, bright-hued colored-pencil illustrations add much to this pleasing and lively book about happy, memory-making occasions. What's not to like?—Maryann H. Owen, Racine Public Library, WI
Kirkus Reviews
Young children who are always looking forward to the next holiday (and the adults they pester) will appreciate this one, as long as they are white Americans of the basically Judeo-Christian variety. To bouncy rhyming verse, readers follow five-year-old Nell from her birthday in August (since August lacks a holiday), through each month's holidays and back again: Labor Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year's Eve, Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, Easter, Mother's Day, Memorial Day, Father's Day and the Fourth of July. Both the verses and Bluthenthal's colorful illustrations reflect a return to the Leave-It-to-Beaver idea of families-a Caucasian Christian family with a Mom, Dad and one child, with celebrations that include extended family and friends. They also represent the traditional activities that go with each holiday-a barbecue for Labor Day, dyeing eggs for Easter and a parade on the Fourth of July. Preschool and kindergarten teachers will find this a tool of limited utility, as they will have to look elsewhere for holidays outside the Christian tradition and for alternative-family arrangements. (Picture book. 3-5)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780399237331
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
05/13/2010
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
8.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
3 - 5 Years

Meet the Author

Susan Middleton Elya lives in Danville, California.

Diana Cain Bluthenthal lives in Washington State.

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