Reviews for Hanukkah Hop!

Horn Book Guide Reviews 2012 Spring
On the last night of the holiday, extended family and friends gather in Rachel's streamer-festooned living room for her family's Hanukkah Hop. The evening starts with storytelling and dreidel-spinning; arrival of the Mazel-Tones klezmer band ramps things up. Silverman's gleeful text has rhythm, and D'Amico's angular illustrations, with their circa-1950s flair, keep up the pace throughout this unabashedly joyful Hanukkah romp. Copyright 2012 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2011 #6
On the last night of Hanukkah, with all the candles lit, Rachel's parents host "our first ever Hanukkah Hop!" Extended family and friends gather in the streamer-festooned, latke-perfumed living room. The evening starts sedately, with Hanukkah story-telling and dreidel-spinning. With the arrival of the Mazel-Tones klezmer band, the celebration ramps up: "Biddy-biddy bim-bom bim-bom bop. / Spin! Swing! Sway! / Dive! Jump! Pop! / The party's going wild at the Hanukkah Hop!" Like the enthusiastic revelers, Silverman's gleeful text has rhythm. D'Amico's angular illustrations, with their circa-1950s flair, keep up the pace, as the partygoers overtake all available space in the living room and on the pages. Readers' toes are sure to be tapping throughout this unabashedly joyful Hanukkah romp. elissa gershowitz Copyright 2011 Horn Book Magazine Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews 2011 September #1

The arrival of some special guests transforms the traditional family Hanukkah gathering into a dance fest that has everyone moving to the rhythm of a bopping, hopping beat.

Excitement mounts while Rachel and her parents get ready to host the extended family. Streamers, blue balloons and shiny menorahs are all arranged while latkes fry and the family listens to a "jazzy bim-bom beat." Unlike Lisa Wheeler's sprightly, zesty jitterbug verse in Jazz Baby (illustrated by R. Gregory Christie, 2007), Silverman's forced, uneven rhymes are only marginally successful at achieving that bebop syncopation. She seems to struggle with her verse framework to include all the conventional elements (dreidels, menorahs, latkes) and a very brief summary of the origin of the holiday along with the description of a joyous celebration. Her inclusion of a Klezmer band (the Mazel-Tones) injects much-needed energy into the party with its version of the ever-changing refrain. "Biddy-biddy bim-bom / bim-bom bop. / Spin! Swing! Sway! / Dive! Jump Pop! / The party's going wild / at the Hanukkah Hop!" While the text falls short and is difficult to read aloud with an appropriately fluid musical swing, the digitally rendered cartoon-style art provides retro-cool images of a raucous, frenzied shindig.

An unsuccessful blending of the holiday's history and rituals with a boogie-woogie theme leaves this Hanukkah addition on the sidelines. (glossary) (Picture book. 4-7)

Copyright Kirkus 2011 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2011 September #3

Silverman (Sholom's Treasure) conjures a "bim-bom bop" of a Hanukkah party at Rachel's house, complete with a klezmer band (the Mazel-Tones) to juke the joint after the candles are lit, the latkes and sufganiyot are eaten, and the dreidls are spun. Young Rachel is finally the last one dancing, long after the music stops. D'Amico (Ella the Elephant series) uses an urbane retro style for his illustrations, pencil sketches that have been digitally rendered and colored on a computer. Ages 3-6. (Oct.)

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School Library Journal Reviews 2011 October

K-Gr 2--Evoking a joyous refrain found in traditional Hasidic music, this celebration of Hanukkah brings a family together for a jubilant night of dancing. A chant of "Biddy-biddy bim-bom bim-bom bop" sets both the tone and the beat of the energetic rhyming text, building from a jazzy syncopation to a whirling, rollicking climax reminiscent of a piece of Klezmer music. "Spin! Swing! Sway!/Dive! Jump! Pop!/The party's going wild/at the Hanukkah Hop!" Charmingly retro, digitally rendered illustrations, reminiscent of '60s-era cartoons, are animated and joyful. One should probably read through the text a few times before reading aloud to be sure to catch the syncopated beat. A fresh and festive choice for the Festival of Lights.--Teri Markson, Los Angeles Public Library

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