Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Celebrate Valentine's Day with love, cards, and candy

Celebrate Valentine's Day with love, cards, and candy

Carolyn Otto
Non Fiction
For ages 6 to 9
National Geographic Children's Books, 2008   ISBN: 978-1426302138

Today many people think that Valentine's Day was invented by the flower shop and greeting card industries. This is not the case at all. Valentine's Day has been celebrated in one form or another for centuries. It probably began with people celebrating the first signs of spring and giving thanks for the new life that they saw around them. Of course spring is a time when many creatures find themselves a partner. Love is in the air. These old traditions were then combined with the story of St. Valentines who was executed on February 14th because he performed marriages in secret against the wishes of Emperor Claudius.

It is said that St. Valentine wrote a letter before he died which he signed "From Your Valentine," and many people think that this was the first valentine. Today people all over the world use cards and letters to tell the people that they care about that they are loved.

What is interesting about this book is that readers are not only told about – and shown –traditional western Valentine's Day celebrations, but they are also get to find out how people all over the world celebrate this delightful holiday. Packed with wonderful photos and with a well written text, this is a delightful addition to the Holidays Around the World series. At the back of the book readers will find further information about St. Valentine's Day along with a recipe for cookies and more.