- Commended, The Canadian Children's Book Centre's "Best Books for Kids and Teens 2011" List
Charlotte and her family have just moved to France. Charlotte is Jewish, but longs to join in the Christmas celebrations as the holidays approach - can she find a way to celebrate both Christmas and Chanukah?close this panel
Jennings' evocative descriptions, together with Gillian Newland's finely rendered illustrations, capture the sights, scents, and tastes of the French countryside. Newland uses an unusually dark palette, but it works. Though Charlotte's story is set in the past, the book's message is timeless: the joy or giving and sharing with family and friends far outshines a thousand shiny baubles.
Sharon Jennings is a superb storyteller, creating an interesting tale depicting the complications of real life. As a reader I felt compelled to read on and although the story is a mere twenty-four pages, it felt as satisfying as a novel ... The book invites children to explore their own feelings about being different, being new and about welcoming those have different cultural backgrounds.
A Chanukah Noel is a Christmas story with a difference. As its title implies, it involves someone who’s Jewish. ... In the end, Charlotte gets her Christmas experience and readers learn a universal truth: It’s better to give than to receive.
"A Chanukah Noel" is an unforgettable tale of reaching across differing cultures, religions, geographies and classes to find the best truth of all: The gift of love is from the heart in any language.
[A] quiet and charming slice of life...The attractive, realistic paintings depict a timeless French village- this story might take place now or several decades ago. A fine cross-cultural choice for larger collections.
Her family's resolution to this dilemma evokes our own family's, but adds an important lesson about tzedakah to boot. I highly recommend this book, and not just for interfaith families.
A Chanukah Noel is a beautiful Christmas story. The illustrations in this book are amazing. Congratulations to illustrator Gillian Newland, as her pictures are just as touching as the story. There is so much detail in each picture that you just can't take your eyes away.
This quiet and charming slice of life, which assumes a basic knowledge of both holidays, shares enough details (chocolate on a baguette as a school snack) to give readers a flavor of Charlotte’s new life. The attractive, realistic paintings depict a timeless French village–this story might take place now or several decades ago. A fine cross-cultural choice for larger collections.
Transplanted from Canada to France, Charlotte mopes that her Jewish family doesn’t celebrate Noel like her schoolmates. Then she comes up with a perfect solution — a Chanukah gift of Noel and all its fixings, delivered to a needy family in the village. This true story comes from the life of a beloved champion of children’s literature, Charlotte Teeple of the Canadian Children’s Book Centre.
The illustrations, created by Gillian Newland, serve well in creating a lovely flow to the timing of the story ... the final illustration in the book and the scene of the Christmas market are exquisite. They begged my eyes to linger on these pages.
Sharon Jennings’s recounting of Charlotte’s story is perfect in every way, as are Gillian Newlands’s powerful paintings, which reflect the depth and weight of this Chanukah/Christmas story.
This book owes much of its appeal to the illustrations by Gillian Newland.
A poignant story for kids aged five to nine, in which a young Jewish girl who has moved with her parents to a new country answers a classmate’s cruelty with an act of simple generosity that transforms the holidays.
A Chanukah Noel is an unforgettable tale of reaching across differing cultures, regions, geographies and classes to find the best truth of all: the gift of love is from the heart in any language.
"Captures both the holiday spirit and the feeling of a French village. Good to have on hand at holiday time."