Review: 1, 2, 3, Nosh with Me

1, 2, 3, Nosh with Me

by Micah & Joshua Siva, illustrated by Svlatoslav Franko

The Collective Book Studio, 2023

Category: Picture Books
Reviewer: Suzanne Grossman

Count along with Buckwheat, an adorable dog, as he eats his way through the Jewish year. A beautiful golden challah for Shabbat and two fluffy matzoh balls in our soup are among the delicious offerings. All of the foods look scrumptious thanks to the bright and cheery artwork.

All of the foods are typical of the Ashkenazi culture, but all of the special days are important to all streams of Judaism. The challah recipe at the back of the book, along with instructions for forming a round coiled challah, are easy to follow. The tradition of “taking challah” (separating and burning a small portion of challah dough before baking) is not included but the recipe does not require the amount of flour that would be necessary for this. This book would be appealing to all children, bridging cultures with our shared love of food. It’s a great addition to any home or classroom library for our younger readers. 

Editor's Note: This book may work best with readers already familiar with Jewish cuisine and customs, as the food items are frequently presented without context. There are year-round foods (kugel, knishes) and holiday foods (sufganiyot, hamantaschen) presented one after another without distinction, and the holidays are often implied through additional symbols rather than explicitly named.

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Reviewer Suzanne Grossman is happily retired after 30 years as a children’s library media specialist. She had the opportunity to share books, tell stories, and encourage the joy of reading with thousands of children. The moment when a child enters a story, experiences life as a character does and walks through the setting the author has created is magical. She is honored to have the opportunity to be part of the Sydney Taylor Shmooze, working to bring the best of the newest Jewish children’s literature into the lives of young readers. Having the gift of time, she now enjoys writing picture books and sharing them with children. Happy reading everyone!