THE MYSTERIOUS GUESTS by Eric A. Kimmel

THE MYSTERIOUS GUESTS

A Sukkot Story
by , illustrated by
Age Range: 5 - 8

KIRKUS REVIEW

Wealth and kindness vie in this instructive autumn-holiday morality story illustrated with Krenina’s dim, muted acrylics in harvest hues. Two brothers, one rich, pompous and undeserving, the other modest, charitable and selfless, live separately and hold individual Sukkot celebrations. Jewish tradition states that the weeklong observance, held in a small hut (sukkah) just outside the home, include the welcoming of guests at the family meals. When three weary travelers (the spirits of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob) knock on each brother’s door, a test ensues to see if the welcome they receive merits a blessing or a curse. Wealthy Eben invites only certain proper and important people to his table and barely allows the disheveled travelers space in a corner, while kind Ezra happily welcomes them as equals—with entirely predictable curses and blessings, respectively. Typical of Kimmel’s work but not his best, this holiday offering is handicapped by the dark and dense illustrations. Still, the shelves do not overflow with Sukkot tales; this is a serviceable stopgap while waiting for more. (author’s note) (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 15th, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-8234-1893-0
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Holiday House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2008




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