Hanukkah Bear

by Eric A Kimmel (Author) Mike Wohnoutka (Illustrator)

Hanukkah Bear
Reading Level: 2nd − 3rd Grade

Bubba Brayna makes the best latkes in the village, and on the first night of Hanukkah, the scent of her cooking wakes a hungry, adorable bear from his hibernation. He lumbers into town to investigate, and Bubba Brayna--who does not see or hear very well--mistakes him for her rabbi. She welcomes the bear inside to play the dreidel game, light the menorah, and enjoy a scrumptious meal.

However, after her well-fed guest leaves, there's a knock at the door--it's the rabbi, and all of Brayna's other friends, arriving for dinner. But there are no latkes left--and together, they finally figure out who really ate them.

Lively illustrations by Mike Wohnoutka, portraying the sprightly Bubba Brayna and her very hungry guest, accompany this instant family favorite, a humorous reworking of Eric A. Kimmel's earlier classic tale, The Chanukkah Guest. A traditional recipe for latkes is included in the back matter, along with interesting, digestible facts about the history and traditions of Hanukkah.


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Kirkus Reviews

The now-classic tale’s humor still fosters eye-rolling laughter, with Wohnoutka’s illustrations as rib-tickling complement. (Picture book. 4-6)

Copyright 2013 Kirkus Reviews, LLC Used with permission


Publishers Weekly

Kimmel (Little Red Hot) revises a story previously published in Cricket magazine and as a 1990 picture book, The Hanukkah Guest, with cheerful new acrylic illustrations from Wohnoutka (Just Like My Papa). The story follows 97-year-old Bubba Brayna as she hosts her rabbi for a Hanukkah meal. With her failing eyesight and poor hearing, Bubba Brayna doesn't realize that a hungry bear, not the rabbi, has appeared at her doorstep, clamoring for fresh latkes. They light the menorah, say the blessings, and indulge in traditional Hanukkah fare. Bubba's remarkable patience as she puts up with the none-too-scary bear's gruffness will amuse readers as they prepare for their own Hanukkah celebrations. Ages 4-8. (Oct.)

Copyright 2013 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.

School Library Journal

Starred Review

PreS-Gr 1--Kimmel has pared down his The Chanukkah Guest (Holiday House, 1990) to create this new, reillustrated version for younger readers. Though a bit of the rich language is gone from this much-loved story about 97-year-old Bubba Brayna mistaking a latke-seeking bear for her rabbi, the essence and the humor remain. Bubba Brayna still tries to take the bear's coat, interprets his "grrrowwws" and "rrrrumphs" as the blessing over the Hanukkah candles, and wipes the jam from his "beard" after he finishes his meal. The book was originally illustrated by Giora Carmi; the new acrylic paintings by Wohnoutka have a warm, mirthful quality. Petite Bubba Brayna is rosy and welcoming toward the large honey brown bear, who is more endearing than menacing. Large textured brushstrokes make the snow on Bubba Brayna's roof look like frosting, while inside her cozy house everything has a golden glow. Successful on every level, this holiday favorite is sure to be popular with anyone who appreciates a little humor with their holidays.--Teri Markson, Los Angeles Public Library

Copyright 2013 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.
Eric A Kimmel
Eric A. Kimmel is the author of many picture books, including Hershel
and the Hanukkah Goblins
, a Caldecott Honor Book illustrated by Trina Schart
Hyman. He was once a storyteller, and he loves classic tales. For more information
visit Eric's website at www.ericakimmel.com.

Pep Monserrat has illustrated picture book versions of such classics as The
Musicians of Bremen
and Aladdin and the Magic Lamp. He is delighted
to have this opportunity to portray the archetypal heroes and heroines of ancient
Greece. For more information visit Pep's website at www.pepmonserrat.com

Classification
Fiction
ISBN-13
9780823428557
Lexile Measure
520L
Guided Reading Level
L
Publication date
September 20, 2013
Series
-
Age Range
4 - 8 years
National Jewish Book Award
Winner 2013

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