Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Celebrate Hanukkah with Lights, Latkes, and Dreidels

Celebrate Hanukkah with Lights, Latkes, and Dreidels

Deborah Heiligman
For ages 6 to 9
National Geographic, 2006   ISBN: 978-0792259244

Hanukkah is a celebration which Jewish people all around the world enjoy in November or December. It is a time when Jews remember a period in their history when a King tried to prevent the Jews from being able to worship in their temple. The Jews fought back against this oppression and when they were once again able to return to their temple, they celebrated for eight days and eight nights.

Today Jews still celebrate this holiday for eight days and eight nights. Every evening at sundown they light a candle and they say special prayers. The candles rest in a special candelabrum called a Hanukkah menorah or Hanukkiah. During these eight days Jews also eat special foods such as latkes, they play special games, they exchange gifts, and they give to the needy.

In this photograph rich picture book young readers will see how Jews all over the world celebrate this special holiday. Among other things they can see a boy in Peru saying his prayers, Ugandan children sharing the holiday together, and a girl and her family making latkes in their kitchen in California.

At the back of the book the author provides her readers with more information about Hanukkah including descriptions of how to light a Menorah and how to play dreidel. She also includes a recipe for Latke?s which will certainly make young readers smile.