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BABUSHKA by Sandra Ann Horn


by Sandra Ann Horn & illustrated by Sophie Fatus

Age Range: 3 - 6

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2002
ISBN: 1-84148-353-2
Publisher: Barefoot

Another variation on the gifts for the Christ Child theme is the focus of this delightful tale starring the Russian grandmother character of Babushka. The amusing and well-written story features a humorous Babushka who is the epitome of cleanliness. (She tells the passing wise men they must take off their boots before coming into her tidy house.) Babushka breaks away from her cleaning to carry three gifts to the Holy Family: a toy clown and a shawl for the baby and a bottle of ginger cordial to warm the grown-ups. Along her journey, she gives away each gift to someone in need, and almost turns away from the manger scene, but Mary warmly welcomes her into the stable anyway. There Babushka sees that the others have brought along all of her gifts and they are already in use. Mary reassuringly says, “Everything you gave with love, you gave to my son, also.” Tempted to clean the cobwebs in the stable, Babushka forgets those plans in order to rock the baby to sleep as hovering angels sing of peace. Enchanting acrylic paintings employ a stylized, folk-art style using flattened, distorted perspectives, jewel-bright tones, and characters that look like carved Russian dolls. This original gem of a story creates its own satisfying glow with polished tones in both words and art. (Picture book. 3-6)