Hanukkah Delight!

  • Interest Level: Preschool
  • Reading Level: Preschool

Whimsical bunnies celebrate Hanukkah in this charming rhyming board book describing all the Hanukkah rituals beloved by Jewish kids.

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Interest Level Preschool
Reading Level Preschool
Copyright 2016
Publisher Lerner Publishing Group
Imprint Kar-Ben Publishing ®
Language English
Number of Pages 12
Publication Date 2016-08-01
Text Type Fiction
BISACS JUV017110, JUV002210
Dewey 296.4/35
Graphics Full-color illustrations
Dimensions 6.5 x 6.5
Lexile 310
Features Reviewed

Author: Lesléa Newman

Leslea Newman has created 80 books for readers of all ages. Her awards include two National Jewish Book Awards, the Massachusetts Book Award, and the Sydney Taylor Body-of-Work Award. She lives in Holyoke, Massachusetts.

Illustrator: Amy Husband

Amy Husband graduated from Liverpool School of Art with a B.A. in Graphic Art. Based in York, England, she loves illustrating children's books as well as drinking tea and eating biscuits.


Jewish Book Council

“Award-winning children’s book author and past poet laureate of Northhampton, Massachusetts, Newman needs only a single line of text on each page to convey the rituals—and fun—of Hanukkah to the very littlest ones in this happy board book. The joy of the holiday is further enhanced by the amusingly illustrated celebrants filling the brightly-colored pages—from the smiling bunny family hosting the Hanukkah party, to the variety of the other anthropomorphized guests.

Highly recommended for the board book, preschool set.”—Jewish Book Council

Kirkus Reviews

“In brief board-book form Newman revisits the familiar Hanukkah traditions she successfully introduced in Eight Nights of Chanukah, illustrated by Elivia Savadier (2005), and Here Is the World, illustrated by Susan Gal (2014). Here the holiday stands on its own without parodying a Christmas tune or being lost in a compendium of the Jewish year. Of course, a board book has space for much less information. The essential ingredients of the celebration—candles, blessings, latkes, dreidels, and gelt—are mentioned in nine lines of text that all rhyme with ‘delight.’ The finer points of theology, including the miracle Hanukkah commemorates, are left for older children to learn from experience, their own reading, or stories told round the holiday table. The fun is in the detailed pictures. Husband uses cheerful, well-dressed bunnies to depict a family as they celebrate the Jewish holiday American gentiles know best. Some subtle stereotypes still creep in. The family consists of papa, mama, big sister, and baby. A crocodile in a tie and a portly and bespectacled owl are among the friends. The males all wear yarmulkes, and the females all wear dresses. Otherwise they are just like anyone else who can be depicted as talking animals. Useful for both Jewish families and others seeking to give children a head start on religious pluralism.”—Kirkus

The Horn Book Magazine

“In lines with simple meter that all rhyme with the second word in the title,
this board book runs through the high points of Hanukkah (‘Dreidels spinning
through the night / Chocolate gelt—come take a bite’) during a friendly
eighth-night gathering at a rabbit family’s house. The pastel-toned mixed-media
illustrations show the visiting ‘friends and neighbors’ as a congenial assortment of
animals, and they include accurate holiday details such as a row of dreidels with
correctly ordered Hebrew letters. A very first introduction to blessings, candles,
and latkes as well as holiday joy: ‘Hanukkah—a wondrous sight!’”—The Horn Book

Publishers Weekly

“Newman (Ketzel, the Cat Who Composed) and Husband (The Noisy Foxes) team up for a blithe rhyming account of a festive Hanukkah celebration: ‘Friends and neighbors to invite./Ancient blessings we recite./ Gleaming candles burning bright./ Crispy latkes taste just right.’ The celebrants include a family of rabbits, a mouse and her daughter, a tall alligator, and an owl who walks with a cane, creating a sense of warm inclusivity throughout. Newman hits all the key Hanukkah moments (‘Dreidels spinning through the night./Chocolate gelt—come take a bite’), and Husband’s collages brim with joyful energy.”—Publishers Weekly