Eight Winter Nights: A Family Hanukkah Book by Laura Krauss Melmed

Eight Winter Nights: A Family Hanukkah Book by Laura Krauss Melmed
Publisher: Chronicle Books
Genre: Childrens, Holiday, Contemporary
Length: Short Story (32 pages)
Age Recommendation: 3+
Rating: 3 Stars
Review by: Astilbe

Moishe’s Miracle author Laura Krauss Melmed and illustrator Elisabeth Schlossberg celebrate Hanukkahin joyful action rhymes, festive poems, and exuberant scenes of family life. From traditional holiday foods to the story of the Maccabees, they capture the warm sights, sounds, and tastes of this wintertime festival.

There’s a different special candle that needs to be lighted for every night of Hannukah, and that’s only the beginning of the festivities.

One of my favorite scenes showed what happened when the characters received some special visitors on one of the nights of Hannukah. Everyone looked so happy when that happened, especially the children. I smiled when I saw the joy on their faces in the illustration that was included in this section. They were clearly planning to have a wonderful time that night, and I looked forward to seeing what would happen to them next.

I would have liked to see longer explanations of why the characters were lighting the candles in that specific order and what the meanings were of certain rituals. This is the perfect age for children to begin learning basic facts about the holidays their families celebrate. These rhymes didn’t quite have enough details for my tastes.

With that being said, the rhymes were adorable and definitely a lot of fun to read. I loved the fact that they included so many references to active things young readers can do while listening to an adult read this book. It was a great choice for this age group. I wanted to sway to the music and bounce to the beat, too, while I was reading it.

Eight Winter Nights: A Family Hanukkah Book was a cute introduction to how this holiday is celebrated. I’d recommend it to anyone who is looking for a playful way to discuss that topic with their kids.

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