Next book

UNDER THE RAMADAN MOON

This book for the very young adds to the growing number of books on Islamic fasts and feasts, but in its simplicity it doesn’t supply very much in the way of information. The text starts off rhythmically: “We wait for the moon / we watch for the moon / we watch for the Ramadan moon,” but make little sense when it states “We fast by day / under the moon…” and becomes downright pedestrian as “We speak kind words / and stop bad habits / under the moon.” The pastels lend a special softness and serenity, glowing with intensity when it is really night and the moon is shown in its different phases throughout the lunar month of Ramadan, and the people depicted show some of the diversity of the American Muslim community. Most young readers, however, won’t understand that the people in the book are living through a month of fasting each day, and even the author’s note doesn’t provide adults with enough details to expand upon the text. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2008

ISBN: 978-0-8075-8304-3

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Whitman

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2008

Next book

ON THIS SPECIAL NIGHT

A group of farm animals is drawn together by an unusually bright star shining over a stable in their neighborhood in this sentimental Nativity story. The narrative focuses on a gray kitten who is tenderly cared for by his mother in their home in a barn. They follow the other animals to the stable under the star, and as a group they enter and stand before the straw-filled manger in the final spread. The kitten describes his great happiness at this special baby, but unfortunately the baby is not shown in the illustration, which may leave readers confused and dissatisfied. Though Mendez’s large-format illustrations are appealing and the simple story is accessible to preschoolers, the ending demonstrates a lack of knowledge of the needs of this age group, who need to see to believe. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2009

ISBN: 978-0-545-10486-9

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2009

Next book

HAPPY EASTER FROM THE CRAYONS

Let these crayons go back into their box.

The Crayons return to celebrate Easter.

Six crayons (Red, Orange, Yellow, Esteban, who is green and wears a yellow cape, White, and Blue) each take a shape and scribble designs on it. Purple, perplexed and almost angry, keeps asking why no one is creating an egg, but the six friends have a great idea. They take the circle decorated with red shapes, the square adorned with orange squiggles “the color of the sun,” the triangle with yellow designs, also “the color of the sun” (a bit repetitious), a rectangle with green wavy lines, a white star, about which Purple remarks: “DID you even color it?” and a rhombus covered with blue markings and slap the shapes onto a big, light-brown egg. Then the conversation turns to hiding the large object in plain sight. The joke doesn’t really work, the shapes are not clear enough for a concept book, and though colors are delineated, it’s not a very original color book. There’s a bit of clever repartee. When Purple observe that Esteban’s green rectangle isn’t an egg, Esteban responds, “No, but MY GOSH LOOK how magnificent it is!” Still, that won’t save this lackluster book, which barely scratches the surface of Easter, whether secular or religious. The multimedia illustrations, done in the same style as the other series entries, are always fun, but perhaps it’s time to retire these anthropomorphic coloring implements. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Let these crayons go back into their box. (Picture book. 3-5)

Pub Date: Feb. 7, 2023

ISBN: 978-0-593-62105-9

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: Oct. 11, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2022

Close Quickview