Sunday, December 30, 2012

A Song for My Sister by Lesley Simpson - ADVISABLE

Simpson, Lesley.  A Song for My Sister, illustrated by Tatjana Mai-Wyss.  Random House, 2012. $16.99.  PICTURE BOOK.   A young girl named Mira dumps her piggy bank into a wishing well hoping for a sister.  Four years later when the wish comes true she’s not so sure about having a sister after all.  The baby cries a lot.  Mira suggests that her parents put the baby on a police car for the siren.  Mira waits for her sister’s simchat bat, when she is welcomed to the world and named on her eighth day.  When the rabbi arrives at their house her sister is still crying.  The rabbi lights a candle, mom puts a cinnamon stick under the baby’s nose, and dad dips his finger into his Kiddush cup and then places it on the baby’s lips.  Then it’s Mira’s turn.  She sings and miraculously her baby sister stops crying.  Her parents name the baby Shira which means song.  The illustrations draw the reader into the book and are truly sweet.  The story about sisterhood and adjusting to new siblings is universal and one that members of all religions (or lack thereof) will enjoy.  Being unfamiliar with the Jewish culture, I would have enjoyed a small glossary at the end of the story explaining the different terms and ceremonies found in the book.  EL- ADVISABLE.  Samantha Hastings, MA, MLS.   

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