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 Archie Celebrates Diwali
 Author: Ruths, Mitali Banerjee

 Publisher:  Charlesbridge (2021)

 Classification: Easy
 Physical Description: [32] p., col. ill., 26 cm

 BTSB No: 773609 ISBN: 9781623541194
 Ages: 4-8 Grades: K-3

 Divali -- Fiction
 Hinduism -- Customs and practices -- Fiction
 East Indian Americans -- Fiction
 Friendship -- Fiction

Price: $22.58

Archie is worried that her school friends won't like Diwali, her favorite Hindu holiday, and when a storm knocks out the electricity, it looks like the party may be ruined.

 Illustrator: Singh, Parwinder

Video Preview:

   School Library Journal (00/09/21)
   Booklist (09/15/21)

Full Text Reviews:

School Library Journal - 09/01/2021 PreS-Gr 1—Archie, short for Archana, has invited a few friends to her family's Diwali celebration. She feels nervous that they will think her traditions are weird. Archie becomes even more nervous when a storm knocks out the power. But though she apologizes for the spicy food, her friends love the traditional dishes. Their interest leads Archie to share one of the holiday's origin stories. The power returns, the storm blows over, and everyone enjoys dancing and setting off firecrackers together. Bold colors reflect the decorations of Diwali celebrations, while lights are emphasized with smudges and glows. The use of chiaroscuro conveys the holiday's theme of light and good overcoming darkness and evil. Bengali words are used with plenty of context to decipher their meanings (and are explicitly defined in a glossary). Other back matter includes more specific information about the origins of Diwali and how it is observed, and a recipe for making diya (Diwali candles). The narrative is a bit clunky at points, wedging in a superfluous detail here and leaving out a transition there; still, it's an effective primer on the holiday that also communicates the mix of excitement and anxiety experienced by children sharing cultural practices with friends who have different customs. VERDICT Though this isn't a completely smooth read, enchanting illustrations and a simple plot offer an enjoyable glimpse of one family's celebration. A strong choice for picture book shelves.—Rachel Owens, O'Neal Library, Birmingham, AL - Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

Booklist - 09/15/2021 Archie’s favorite holiday, Diwali, is here, and she’s excited for her family’s annual party. Decorations are set, the food’s prepared, and she’s wearing her special outfit, but Archie's nervous because this year she's sharing her family's traditions with friends. A storm and power outage threaten to ruin the party, but, while eating by lantern light, a friend asks what Diwali is, and Archie draws her pals in with the story of Diwali and how the Festival of Lights is a reminder “that evil and darkness can’t win against all our lights shining together.” When the power returns, there’s dancing and fireworks outdoors, rounding out a celebration that everyone enjoys—especially because they share it with family and friends. Slick, digitally rendered illustrations depict the scenarios in vivid color and incorporate some of the holiday customs. The text presumes some familiarity with the holiday’s Hindu association, and appended back matter helps bolster the story with a glossary of Hindi terms used in the book, some additional Diwali information, and a craft. An upbeat story about the holiday and a reassuring portrayal of childhood anxieties. - Copyright 2021 Booklist.

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