Raisins and Almonds

A Yiddish Lullaby

  • Interest Level: Preschool - Grade 2
  • Reading Level: Grade 1

Scribble-scrabble. Scribble-scrabble. What is the noise coming from under Annie’s bed? It’s a little white goat, says her mother. Together mother and child create a fantastical adventure in an imaginary world. Based on the much-loved Yiddish lullaby “Rozhinkes Mit Mandlen” (“Raisins and Almonds”), this book includes a QR code link to a video recording of the song in Yiddish and English, as well as an author’s note and the Yiddish and English lyrics to the song.

Format Your Price Add
Interest Level Preschool - Grade 2
Reading Level Grade 1
Genre Picture Books
Copyright 2019
Publisher Lerner Publishing Group
Imprint Kar-Ben Publishing ®
Language English
Number of Pages 32
Publication Date 2019-04-01
Text Type Fiction
BISACS JUV033020, JUV057000, JUV010000
Dewey [E]
Graphics Full-color illustrations
Dimensions 9.25 x 11
Lexile 460
Features Author/Illustrator biography, Author/Illustrator note, Awards, Page Plus™, and Reviewed

Author: Susan Tarcov

Susan Tarcov grew up next to the Bronx Zoo, a great inspiration for writing children's books. She is married, has three children, and lives in Chicago. Her previous books include Maya Prays for Rain, Raisins and Almonds: A Yiddish Lullaby, The Rabbi and His Donkey, and Professor Buber and His Cats.

Illustrator: Sonia Sánchez

Award-winning illustrator Sonia Sánchez paints with both traditional and digital brushes using layers of texture in her work to evoke emotion and movement. Sonia lives in Spain.


  • Aesop Prize, Winner, 2019


Jewish Book Council

Raisins and Almonds: A Yid­dish Lul­la­by is high­ly rec­om­mend­ed for chil­dren ages 3 to 8, as well as for any­one who loves the orig­i­nal song, and for fans of dis­tin­guished pic­ture book art. An author’s note describes the song’s ori­gin and a scannable QR code is includ­ed so that read­ers can hear it performed.”―Jewish Book Council

Publishers Weekly

“Redheaded Bella hears night noises and heads to her mother, who explains that the source is a little white goat who runs a store under Bella’s bed. The child is intrigued: ‘Will he have a red bicycle?’ she asks. ‘You never know,’ Mama says. Returning to her room, Bella enters an enchanted landscape, rendered by Sánchez (Here I Am) in sweeping, pencil-like textures and velvety colors ranging from earthy to radiant. Bella meets three fellow shoppers—a mouse needing furniture and a mezuzah, a rabbit seeking gardening equipment and a kippah, and a wolf who craves pickled herring, bagels and lox, and pastrami—as text by Tarcov (Maya Prays for Rain) becomes a series of incantatory dialogues, with each animal asking about the goat’s inventory and Bella responding, as her mother did, with ‘You never know.’ Arriving at the goat’s store, the quartet discovers that he sells only raisins and almonds, and the story abruptly stops—readers may even wonder whether the final pages have gone missing. The connection to the titular lullaby is tenuous (even with an explanatory author’s note), but the authors do succeed in conveying what dreaming feels like: marvelously strange and surreally vivid. Ages 3–8.” —Publishers Weekly

Kirkus Reviews

“Sánchez’s colorful double-page-spread illustrations are fanciful and whimsical, playing up the magical elements.”