Kirkus Reviews QR Code
WISH by Roseanne Thong


Wishing Traditions Around the World

by Roseanne Thong, illustrated by Elisa Kleven

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-8118-5716-1
Publisher: Chronicle

Featuring tidbits of children’s folklore from 15 countries, this small collection provides a double-page spread on each custom, starting with a four-line poem followed by a short paragraph giving just enough information for young readers to absorb. The details are wonderfully expressed in Kleven’s jewel-toned mixed-media illustrations, which magically portray children and adults in rural and urban settings that look traditional and contemporary at the same time. From such religious traditions as inserting papers with wishes in Israel’s Wailing Wall to the less formal wish-making of blowing out the birthday candles in the United States, puffing dandelions in Ireland or seeing a single striped weasel in Zulu villages in South Africa, the author and illustrator present a playfulness and a hope for better lives that is contagious. Some details are lacking: There are further explanations of the traditions at the end, but no sources, and a finding game of some lucky symbols is presented without explanation thereof. Still, for pure fun, this will inspire children to try out all of these ways of wishing. (endpaper maps) (Informational picture book. 4-8)