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The Latke Who Couldn't Stop Screaming: A Christmas Story Hardcover – October 28, 2007
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Go ahead and cover this book in red, stamp it with gold foil and label it a Christmas story—Lemony Snicket fans won't be fooled. The miraculous birth here is of a potato pancake, which, unlike its less loquacious literary cousin the Gingerbread Man, begins screaming the moment it gets cooked. Leaping out of the frying pan and into the great white spaces of Brown's retro-cool graphics, the latke screams even louder as it tries in vain to explain itself and its role at Hanukkah to flashing colored lights (So you're basically hash browns, they reply. Maybe you can be served alongside a Christmas ham) and an equally Christmas-centric candy cane and tree. Embedding a satirical sting in his elegantly cadenced prose, the author (Daniel Handler) up-ends any number of conventions in what may be his funniest book yet. The gift-edition trim size makes this as easy a choice for adults as for the Unfortunate Events crowd. All ages. (Nov.)
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The symbolic imagery clearly is narrated as the lakte meets his counterparts of the Christmas holiday that consists of a string of Christmas lights, pine tree, and candy cane. Each one somewhat educates and shares with the lakte how important it is to the Christmas season, and even suggests that it should have a Christmas carol. But throughout the story and the numerous convincing that the candy cane and the pine tree suggest, the latke is not quite convinced and it screams in "aaahhhhhhhhh!!!" of its denial.
The Latke Who Couldn't Stop Screaming is indeed an eye-opening tale for all ages to read during the Christmas and Hanukah holiday season. And with every Snicket tale, there is always a lesson to be learned or pondered upon.
We read it aloud on Christmas, and kids and adults alike were cracking up!
CAUTION: May cause small children to not want to make or eat latkes for fear of hurting them. That just means more latkes for adults.
Finally the latke finds some kindred spirits: a Jewish family who understands him so well, it eats him.