December 27, 2012

Review: Two Children's Books from Marshall Cavendish

Mary Had a Little Lamb Mary Had a Little Lamb
By Sarah Josepha Hale
Illustrated by Laura Huliska-Beith
Available now from Marshall Cavendish (Amazon)
Review copy

The text of MARY HAD A LITTLE LAMB is the poem written by Sarah Josepha Hale in the 1830s, which is slightly different than the children's song still popular today.  It's basically the same, but some lines might trip kids (and perhaps even their guardians up).  I know it took me a second to parse "And you each gentle animal in confidence may bind, and make them follow at your call, if you are always kind."

But my niece loves to sing "Mary Had a Little Lamb," so I think she'll enjoy this book.  Laura Huliska-Beith's illustrations are quite lively.  Her colors are bright but softly employed, and her cartoony style is appealing.  The illustrations add to the text, illuminating the meaning of each line.  This one is a good choice for children like my niece who love nursery rhymes.

The Golem's Latkes The Golem's Latkes
By Eric A. Kimmel
Illustrated by Aaron Jasinski
Available now from Marshall Cavendish (Amazon)
Review copy

Eric A. Kimmel combines tales of Rabbi Judah Loew ben Bezalel's Golem with The Sorcerer's Apprentice in THE GOLEM'S LATKES.  When Rabbi Juda goes to speak to Emperor Rudolf II, his housemaid Basha uses the golem to help complete her chores.  But when she goes to speak to a friend without telling the golem to stop making latkes, the town begins to fill up with potato pancakes!

Kimmel's story won't surprise anyone who has seen Fantasia, but Aaron Jasinski's illustrations make the text special.  His style uses light and perspective well to create dynamic, engaging images.  I thought the illustrations were quite lovely and suit the text well.

THE GOLEM'S LATKES is a simple but well done children's book.


  1. I think I'd enjoy Mary Had a Little Lamb moreseo than the other. Cute illustrations are always nice! Glad you enjoyed both.


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