SCBWI

Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Holiday Book Recommendations from our E&I Team

From the E.I. Team, a gift to Southern Breeze🎁
 
We present books that bring us together, celebrating family, food, and festivals. We’ll add more during the holidays. Keep watching!
 
PICTURE BOOKS 
 
Tonya invites you to grab a tray and fill it with these tasty books she knows you’ll enjoy reading!
 
Freedom Soup
Written by Tami Charles and Illustrated by Jacqueline Alcantara
From the mashing of the herbs to the kompa beat, Freedom Soup pulls readers in to hear Ti Gran share her soup recipe and the story of the Haitian people’s fight for freedom. This delectable tale celebrates family, history, and the passing down of cultural traditions. Its aromatic flavored lyrical text will keep you wanting to return for more.
 
Soul Food Sunday
Written by Winsome Bingham and Illustrated by C.G. Esperanza
Get ready for a mouthwatering rhythmic text where Granny and her little helper cook up a delicious soul food Sunday meal. This story is packed with yummy descriptions of mac-n-cheese, greens, and more. It’s a celebration of food, family, and fun packed into a weekly tradition that makes you want to start your own.
 
Thank You, Omu
Written and illustrated by Oge Mora
Omu is making soup. The tantalizing aroma floats out her apartment window and around the block, and look who shows up to share! This is a lovely expression of sharing and thanks. Joan read this with a pre-school and loved the choruses of “Thank you, Omu (Ah-Moo)” with every page turn. Omu means Queen in Igbo and is used as an endearing term for grandmother.

 

LATKES, LATKES, GOOD TO EAT: A Chanukah Story

by Naomi Howland
A magical tale about a pan that can cook endless sizzling hot latkes and the importance of generosity over greed.. Written for the board book reader.

 

TOO MANY TAMALES

by Gary Soto, illus by Ed Martinez

On Christmas Eve, Maria’s family gathers together for a tamale dinner. But Mama’s diamond ring has disappeared into the batter! Can the cousins eat through the tamales and find the ring before Maria gets in trouble?

 

THE FIRST STRAWBERRIES

by Joseph Bruchac, illus by Anna Vojtech
The re-telling of a Cherokee legend that explains how strawberries came to be on Earth.

 

BILAL COOKS DAAL

by Aisha Saeed, illus byAnoosh Syed

Bilal wants to share his family tradition of eating daal—a lentil dish that must simmer a long time—with his friends and community. Will they like it as much as Bilal does, after all that waiting?

 

RICE AND ROCKS

by Sandra L. Richards, illus by Megan Kayleigh Sullivan

Giovanni invites friends to Sunday dinner and Grandmother plans to serve the Jamacaiin version of rice and beans. Giovanni calls it “ rice and rocks” and is embarrassed until his favorite Auntie takes him on a magical global journey to discover how many cultures eat the same thing.

 

EVERYBODY COOKS RICE

by Norah Dooley, illus by Peter J. Thornton

Carrie’s brother is late for dinner so she goes from house to house, in the neighborhood, to find him. She discovers that different cultures all have some type of rice dish for dinner. The book includes simple recipes to enjoy.

 

BREAD, BREAD, BREAD

by Ann Morris, photos by Ken Keyman

A photographic book of the many shapes, textures, and colors that bread has around the world.

 

BEE-BIM BOP

by Linda Sue Park, illus by Ho Baek Lee

Bee-Bim Bop, a Korean dish of rice, meat, and vegetables is a means to bond a girl and her mother as they shop, prepare, then eat together. Written in rhyme and contains the author’s recipe.

 

HIROMI’S HANDS

by Lynne Barasch

A true story about a Japanese-American named Hiromi Suzuki, who defied the male- oriented world of sushi making, and became one of the first female sushi chefs in New York.

 

THE HAVE A GOOD DAY CAFE

by Frances Park, Ginger Park, illus by Katherine Potter

Mike’s grandmother comes to America from Korea, to live with his family. When their American style food cart starts to lose business, Grandmother and Mike come up with a plan to serve Korean food to Americans.

 

DUCK FOR TURKEY DAY

by Jacqueline Jules, ilus. By Kathryn Mitter

Tuyet is excited to celebrate Thanksgiving until she finds out her Vietnamese-American family will eat duck, not turkey. She’s afraid her classmates will make fun of her dinner after vacation. But, she discovers that classmates had lamb, enchiladas, and roast beef for Thanksgiving instead of turkey.

 

 
MIDDLE GRADE NOVELS 
 
American as Paneer Pie
by Supriya Kelkar
Lisa raved about this one. There’s a recipe at the end.
 
Front Desk
by Kelly Yang
A ten year old contrasts her life in China with her new life in America. You may be surprised by her observations. Hamburgers are involved.