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
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.
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 LibraryCopyright 2013 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.