From School Library Journal
Grade 2–4—The new crescent appears, marking the first day of the month of Ramadan. Yasmeen, a seven-year-old Pakistani-American girl, is confused because "it's only the seventeenth." Her mother explains that the Islamic calendar is a lunar calendar. At sunset, the family enjoys a special dinner. The following week, her family prepares food to be distributed at a mosque. One night, Yasmeen sees that the moon is full, and realizes that the observance is half over. Other events include a family barbecue and a celebration of the "Night of the Moon" at the community center, where stalls sell clothes, jewelry, toys, snacks, and gifts. Then Ramadan is over, and the next day is Eid. Yasmeen awakes to her brother's greeting of "Eid mubarak
," and the children receive gifts of money. Paschkis's beautiful paintings incorporate Islamic tile art, adding to an authentic sense of the culture. Suitable both for independent reading and reading aloud, this book also serves as an excellent resource for teachers and librarians.—Fawzia Gilani-Williams, Oberlin Public Library, OH
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
*Starred Review* The Muslim holiday of Ramadan gets a vibrant, visually exciting treatment here. Yasmeen, a seven-year-old Pakistani American girl, looks out the window with her mother, watching the moon’s first crescent. Mom explains how in the Islamic calendar the months follow the lunar cycle, and an excited Yasmeen realizes it’s time for Ramadan. In school, she shares with her classmates details of the holiday, such as the fast. At home, she shares meals with family. The holiday moves week by week, until finally the sky is moonless. “The Night of the Moon” means Ramadan is over, and the next day is the holiday of Eid. Khan’s author’s note explains the origins of Ramadan and the reasons for fasting. The book focuses on the celebratory aspects of the holiday rather than the religious underpinnings, more of which could have been included in the text. But the upbeat tone of the writing is matched by Paschkis’ lively, jewel-like art that uses Islamic decorative stylings and has the look of enameled design work. Midnight blues and sea greens frame pictures of Muslims from many cultures and traditions, all sharing sacred days. Grades K-2. --Ilene Cooper