Editorial Review

AJL Newsletter

Cover: Nathan Blows Out the Hanukkah Candles

“Jacob’s older brother, Nathan, celebrates the lighting of the menorah in his own unique way, as he does everything else, by blowing out the candles as soon as they are lit. Nathan exhibits behavior that we associate with autism, but Jacob just finds it annoying. He is thrilled when a new boy moves in next door that he can play with, until his new friend makes fun of Nathan’s behavior and calls him weird. His new friend, Steven, is just not nice when faced with Nathan’s behavior. Relationships between the boys are strained, until the parents, patient with this special child and described as being extremely sensitive, plan a solution that works well and is satisfying to everyone’s needs, both acknowledging Nathan’s uniqueness and celebrating the holiday together in a special way. There is a realistic description of Jacob working through his conflicting emotions about his brother while attempting to fit his new friend into his life. There is also a lot of love in this book, written by an author who has written many children’s books of Jewish interest. Lovely watercolor illustrations add to the story. The description of life with an autistic child in the family makes the book’s message universal and not limited to Jewish collections, but it is certainly worthwhile for any Judaica library. Based on a real child, a real ‘Nathan,’ this tale can provide a wonderful way to introduce autism and indeed any kind of special children to young children and their families. It will allow both parents and teachers to trigger discussion of special children, as well.” —Association of Jewish Libraries

Products Reviewed

Title  
Nathan Blows Out the Hanukkah Candles
  • Available in limited formats
  • Soon! Spring 2021
  • New! Fall 2020
  • New! Spring 2020

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