Shubh Diwali!
Shubh Diwali!

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Annotation: One family celebrates the Hindu festival of lights.
Catalog Number: #194585
Format: Perma-Bound Edition from Publisher's Hardcover
All Formats: Search
Publisher: Albert Whitman
Copyright Date: 2019
Edition Date: 2019
Illustrator: Chua, Charlene,
Pages: 32
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-8075-7355-8 Perma-Bound: 0-7804-6108-8
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-8075-7355-6 Perma-Bound: 978-0-7804-6108-6
Dewey: E
LCCN: 2018058358
Dimensions: 26 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
Diwali, the Hindu celebration of both literal and metaphorical light, spans five days of rituals, camaraderie, and well-wishes. Young readers ose who do and don't celebrate Diwali ll smile along with the family here as all the members of their household, young, old, and canine, prepare the house for the celebration. Precise couplets on each page describe the preparations and traditions, while vibrant illustrations supply the context and details. Donning new clothes, the family welcomes visitors, the elders pass stories on to the younger generation, prayers are offered, and finally, the lamps are lit as the celebration is shared with the larger community. Soundar's text reflects a lovely, pluralistic society in which an Indian family's values and practices are affirmed. Pictures depict a modern, intergenerational family living in a diverse community. Diwali traditions include feasting together and reaching out to others with gifts and donations. A necessary addition to any corpus of books about celebrations.
Kirkus Reviews
Soundar's rhyming picture book gives readers an overview of the Hindu celebration of Diwali as it is celebrated in large parts of North India and by the North Indian diaspora.Diwali is celebrated on the night of the new moon, and so after "Grandpa watches the waning moon" and notes that "the festival is coming soon," an Indian boy and girl help their family clean and decorate the house. Then they all don new clothes, sing hymns and light lamps together, and exchange gifts and sweets with their neighbors, all in celebration of the holiday. Family members wear a combination of traditional Indian and Western attire; the suburban setting looks Western. It ends with a joyful greeting: "Shubh Diwali, to one and all. / We wish you joy, big and small!" Soundar's use of "Shubh" in the title—meaning "auspicious" or "holy"—instead of "Happy" is welcome, as is Chua's inclusion of neighborhood diversity (white and black families as well as a person using a wheelchair). As an entry on the holidays shelf, it breaks little new ground, but North American shelves hardly overflow with Diwali titles. An author's note explaining the regional and religious differences in the celebration of Diwali across South Asia and the diaspora and a glossary of common terms provide readers with additional scaffolding.A solid introduction to a holiday celebrated by millions. (Picture book. 4-8)
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2 Told in the words of a child, this picture book shows how an Indian family prepares for the festival of Diwali. Young and old participate equally in these preparations. Everyone helps clean the house and decorate it with buntings and vibrant, colorful art. Traditional foods and sweets are made, and new clothes are bought. When Diwali begins, families come together to worship, sing hymns, and tell stories of gods. It's time to visit friends and neighbors. Fireworks brighten the skies, and gifts are exchanged. The pictures are vivid and detailed, and the book is narrated in cheerful rhyme. Soundar briefly touches on the background of the Hindu festival of light, but the focus remains on the preparation and practices during the celebration. For those already familiar with Diwali, this book is fun and relatable, and for those who have not been exposed to Hindu culture, this will teach them that Diwali is a time to celebrate with family and friends, give thanks, and pray for blessings and bounty. VERDICT A well-written selection to introduce Diwali and promote cultural appreciation. Noureen Qadir-Jafar, Syosset Library, NY
Reviewing Agencies: - Find Other Reviewed Titles
ALA Booklist (9/1/19)
Kirkus Reviews
School Library Journal (10/1/19)
Word Count: 164
Reading Level: 1.7
Interest Level: K-3
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 1.7 / points: 0.5 / quiz: 508755 / grade: Lower Grades

Diwali has arrived! Rangoli art decorates the floor and strings of flowers hang around the doors. Now it's time to ring the bells, light the lamps, and welcome the new year with family and friends. A sweet introduction to the Hindu festival of lights.

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