Synopses & Reviews
A family prepares to celebrate Chanukah for the first time since Mama died — in this heartfelt, bittersweet tale that will resonate with anyone who has ever faced an empty chair at the holiday table.
Three plates, Selma reminded herself. Just three plates this Chanukah.
For Selma and her little sister, Dora, this is their first Chanukah without Mama. When Papa comes home carrying a big bag of potatoes and all the ingredients for latkes, Selma is worried. Mama always made the Chanukah latkes. Could they make them without her? In Michelle Edwards's poignant story, illustrated with Stacey Schuett's warmly glowing artwork, Selma comes to realize that while Chanukah — and especially latkes — will never be the same without Mama, Selma can still celebrate, and will always remember.
"Selma and Dora are facing their first Chanukah without Mama, who died during the summer, and Papa's hopelessness as a latke-maker only underscores how much they miss her. But the family finds solace in the memory of Mama and her enduring commitment to creating a loving Jewish home. Edwards (Chicken Man) tackles a difficult subject without crossing the line from heartfelt to maudlin, while Schuett's (America Is...) tender acrylic portraits of a modest urban household in a pre-television era deepen the story's genuineness and emotional impact. Ages 5-7." Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
A family prepares to celebrate their first Chanukah without their late mother in this heartfelt, bittersweet tale that will resonate with anyone who has ever faced an empty chair at the holiday table. Full color.
About the Author
Michelle Edwards is the author-illustrator of many books for children, including CHICKEN MAN, winner of the National Jewish Book Award, and the Jackson Friends series. She is also the co-author, with Phyllis Root, of WHAT'S THAT NOISE?, illustrated by Paul Meisel. She says, "I wrote PAPA'S LATKES one very cold Chanukah morning when the house was still filled with that rich Chanukah smell of potatoes, onions, and oil — latkes from the night before."
Stacey Schuett has illustrated many books for children, including PURPLE MOUNTAIN MAJESTIES by Barbara Younger. PAPA'S LATKES is her first book with Candlewick Press. She says, "This is a lovely story, and I wanted the paintings to reflect the love and warmth in the family, despite the pain of missing their mother."