Talia and the Rude Vegetables
Linda Elovitz Marshall, illus. by Francesca Assirelli. Kar-Ben, $16.95 (24p) ISBN 978-0-7613-5217-4; $6.95 paper ISBN 978-0-7613 -5218-1
This laugh-out-loud title keeps the little jokes coming. Young Talia, a city girl, mishears her grandmother’s request for the child’s help in fetching root vegetables from the garden for a sweet Rosh Hashanah stew. Talia proceeds to wrestle assorted insolent veggies–crooked carrots, peculiar parsnips, and, of course, rude-abagas– from the garden, gathering at the same time nice, compliant ones that she gives to the local rabbi, since her grandmother has specifically requested the rude ones. Talia manages to perform both familial and social duty–she has done a mitzvah to feed the hungry, explains her pleased grandmother, who also gently clarifies the original request. An easy and flexible recipe for “Rude Vegetable Stew” concludes the volume. Quirky, cool-palette color illustrations by Italian artist Assirelli perfectly convey the whimsical narrative in Marshall’s first children’s book. This lovely New Year’s book can be read and enjoyed year-round. Ages 3–8. (Sept.)
Well done Francesca!!