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November 29, 2002 - Image 74

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2002-11-29

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

The Open

Eigitt Nig

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Lee stem



A Pop-up Celebration by David A. Carter

This Book Will B
And You'll Love

The market is flooded with new children s ooks
for the holiday
check out AppleTree's reviews.



AppleTree Editor

hanukah Bugs by David A. Carter (Little
Simon — a division of Simon &
Schuster; $10.95).
No, you won't see any roaches or cen-
tipedes here (mercifully). These bugs are adorable
ones with big eyes, dancing legs, purple bodies
and hearts popping out from behind their ears —
and they all jump out at you! Chanukah Bugs is a
pop-out book, 'where these nice little creatures
jump out when you open a flap or turn a page.
There's the. Dizzy Dreidel Bug, the Golden Gelt
Bugs, the Sizzling Potato Latke Bugs.
This book is colorful, fun and original.
.Children ages 8 and younger (but older than 3,
because tiny ones are apt to tear the pop-outs) will
love it.

Eight Nights of Chanukah Lights by Dian Curti,S
Regan, art by Dawn Apperley. (Little Simon; 7

Eight Nights is the latest in a series of "Sparkle"
books from Little Simon, which translates to a
gold, glittery topping covering appropriate objects
.(a menorah, a girl's ribbon, a snowman's hat)
throughout the book. It's a cute gimmick.
The art is charming, too, and the short rhymes,
though not especially soul-stirring, work nicely
enough ("Songs and prayers/and gifts each
night/We celebrate/the Festival of Lights") — yes,
we have to have the Chanukah gift routine here.
Please remember: Giving presents on Chanukah is

NOT a Jewish tradition.
Appropriate for ages 5 and younger.

D is for Dreidel by Tanya Lee Stone, with art by
Dawn Apperley. (Price Stern Sloan; $4.99).
Dawn Apperley, who illustrated Eight Nights of
Chanukah (see above), also created art for D is for
Dreidel, and that's the best part of this book. Her
drawings are colorful, endearing and fun.
The text is pretty much standard fare — infor-
mation about Chanukah for each letter of the
alphabet with sometimes clever, sometimes dread-
ful rhymes (in the latter category, witness: "K is
for kugel/A sweet noodle treat/My Grammy adds
raisins/A great dish to eat!"). And because the
author had to find something for each letter,
-there's lots here that has nothing to do with the
holiday, like the kugel, dancing the hora, a quilt.
Virtually each page also shows Chanukah pres-
ents, unfortunately, and most of the girls wear kip-
pot, so this may not be appropriate for all families.
One annoying feature: every rhyme ends with an
exclamation point! After two or three of these, you
want to scream! Flow many exclamation points
can a person take!





One Candle by Eve Bunting, with art by K.
Wendy Popp. (HarperCollins; $15.99).

Too bad. This is a book that could have been
great. .
One Candle is the story of a family that remem-
bers. It's Chanukah, and as everyone gathers for
dinner, Grandma and Great-Aunt Rose speak of
another Chanukah, many years ago. They were

together, in the German concentration camp
Bu4ienwald, and they smuggled a potato from the
kitaten to make a menorah.
The pictures in One Candle are breathtaking.
Each page is like a work of art that draws you in.
Curiously, however, while this family appears to
be quite traditional (all the men are in kippot and
the women are all wearing dresses), the family sits
down to a meal where meat and milk are served
together ("Dad piles our plates with sliced brisket
and gravy. Mom passes the latkes and the sour
Most troubling, though, is a comment from the
grandfather. The grandmother is speaking about
Buchenwald, and a child asks why the Germans
didn't like the Jews.
The grandfather responds: "The Germans didn't
like a lot of people. It wasn't only the Jews." But it
was the Jews that the Nazis targeted for "extermi-
The HoloCaust was the Nazi attempt to wipe out
the entire Jewish people. Certainly many others,
like homosexuals, Gypsies, communists and the
mentally impaired, were killed as well, and we do
right to remember them. But suggesting that the
Germans just "didn't like a lot of people" who
happened to include Jews is not just a matter of
trying to be politically correct — it's offensive. II

Editor's Note: Next week, AppleTree will review

four more new Chanukah books. You can find
all these books, and more, at www.jewish.cotn
in the children's book section.

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