Friday, January 14, 2022

Review - Holi Hai!

Holi Hai!

by Chitra Soundar
illustrated by Darshika Varma
Date: 2022
Publisher: Albert Whitman & Company
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 32
Format: e-book
Source: library

Gauri is excited to splash colors on everyone for Holi. But when she doesn't get her favorite color, Gauri gets mad. Will she find a way to overcome her anger and join in the festivities?

(synopsis from Goodreads)

This a relatable little holiday story about a girl named Gauri. As her family prepares for Holi, each person is assigned a colour and must make a coloured powder. But Gauri doesn't get the colour she wanted, so she sulks all day and doesn't get anything done. Later, Grandpa tells the kids the story of Holika and Prahlada, and Gauri realizes maybe she's been acting with too much anger in her heart. So she works hard all night to try to make things right.

I've read a few Holi picture books. This is one of the stronger ones. The story is engaging, and isn't just about the festival. I enjoyed how Gauri's childhood anger and entitlement was portrayed, and how the issue was eventually resolved. There's a great author's note at the back that explains more about Holi, and there's even some recipes for making coloured waters, just in case you feel like getting joyfully messy.

Overall, this is a nice picture book about Holi with strong themes of family, compromise, and making the best of things when they don't turn out exactly as you wanted.

Premise: 5/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 4/5
Illustrations: 5/5
Originality: 4/5

Enjoyment: 4/5

Overall: 4.33 out of 5

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