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Amira's Picture Day Hardcover – Picture Book, April 13, 2021

4.9 out of 5 stars 57 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

K-Gr 2-Amira feels conflicted when she realizes that school picture day is the same day as Eid. Spotting the crescent moon marking the end of Ramadan, Amira and her brother Ziyad know it means that there will be prayers, celebrations, and skipping school the following day. Amira's mom decorates the girl's hands with mehndi. Amira and Ziyad prepare goody bags for the kids at the masjid, while her mother irons Amira's Eid outfit, a beautiful blue and gold mirrored shalwar kameez. Though Eid is full of the joy and community she loves, missing picture day puts a damper on the celebration, until Amira thinks of a possible solution. Deceptively simple, Faruqi's narrative gently addresses the impact that the celebration of non-­Judeo-Christian holidays has on children and choices families make to uphold traditions. Moreover, Amira's conflicted feelings and insistence on finding a solution create opportunities for dialogue about the importance of acknowledging spaces that matter to children, especially while families try to foster positive identity. Azim's illustrations are fun and colorful, with tiny details reflecting the family's personality, while the people attending Eid celebrations at Amira's masjid are racially and culturally diverse, with varied skin tones, body types, and expressions of fashion and style. Back matter features an author's note and glossary of terms, referencing Urdu and Amira and her family's Pakistani roots. VERDICT A lovely addition to the collection of books about Eid that can be used all year long.-Ariana Sani Hussain, The Blake Sch., Wayzata, MNα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Review

★ "Faruqi’s prose is sweetly descriptive ('Tiny mirrors on her blue shalwar kameez shone happily in the sunlight'), and jewel-toned digital illustrations by Azim have a joyful, comics-style sensibility, with meticulous attention paid to the attire of the diverse crowd at the masjid. An endearing portrait of one child’s specific cultural concern, with universal appeal for any reader ever caught between conflicting commitments."—Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

★ "Faruqi effectively builds up the excitement to celebrate Eid and balances it with Amira’s distress at missing Picture Day—readers will see that both are important. The characters and interactions at the masjid are real, reinforcing a community celebrating Eid, and so are Amira’s interactions with her classmates. Azim’s illustrations pair well with Faruqi’s words, focusing on facial expression as well as body language to highlight the mixed emotions: excitement, sadness, surprise. There is much diversity among the people at the masjid, including hijab styles, other attire, and racial presentation. . . . Sweet and sympathetic."
Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review

★ "Deceptively simple, Faruqi’s narrative gently addresses the impact that the celebration of ­non-­Judeo-Christian holidays has on children and choices families make to uphold traditions. Moreover, Amira’s conflicted feelings and insistence on finding a solution create opportunities for dialogue about the importance of acknowledging spaces that matter to children, especially while families try to foster positive identity. Azim’s illustrations are fun and colorful, with tiny details reflecting the family’s personality, while the people attending Eid celebrations at Amira’s masjid are ­racially and culturally diverse, with varied skin tones, body types, and expressions of fashion and style."—
School Library Journal, Starred Review

"Colorful and humorous cartoon artwork, created digitally, captures Amira’s expressive facial features and energetic body motions as she deals with disappointment, then celebrates a happy outcome. A great pick for teachers wanting to incorporate different cultural celebrations into holiday units."
—Booklist

"The rollercoaster of emotions around an anticipated event, holiday or otherwise, is perfectly captured here, from excitement to nervousness to joy to the inevitable letdown when it’s all over, and Amira’s frenetic energy has her galloping through the pages. . . . An author’s note and glossary make this a useful primer for kids unfamiliar with Eid, but this could easily be used as a discussion starter about how we celebrate special days and with whom."
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Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Holiday House (April 13, 2021)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 40 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0823440192
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0823440191
  • Reading age ‏ : ‎ 4 - 8 years
  • Grade level ‏ : ‎ Preschool - 3
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 14.6 ounces
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 10.28 x 0.27 x 10.28 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.9 out of 5 stars 57 ratings

About the author

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Reem Faruqi is an award winning author who enjoys writing lyrical stories that reflect her own experiences. Reem used to teach second grade and her favorite time was Read Aloud time. Now, her favorite time at home is reading with her daughters. Of Pakistani origin, she moved to Peachtree City, Georgia, from Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates, when she was 13 years old. Reem based her first award-winning children's book "Lailah's Lunchbox" on her own experiences as a young Muslim girl immigrating to the United States. Reem has 3 books projected for 2021: UNSETTLED (HarperCollins), AMIRA'S PICTURE DAY (Holiday House), and I CAN HELP (Eerdmans). Reem Faruqi loves to doodle, write, and take photos. Check out her photoblog at www.ReemFaruqi.com! Currently, she lives with her husband and daughters in Atlanta.

Customer reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
4.9 out of 5
57 global ratings
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Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on May 6, 2021
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Reviewed in the United States on April 13, 2021
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5.0 out of 5 stars Joyous, Colorful, and Expressive
By Jas Asbill on April 13, 2021
Amira’s very real conflict between her love of Eid and her desire to be remembered in her class pictures causes just a little bit of worry.

Never fear, Amira has a plan and we get to see it beautifully unfold.

The art work is joyous, colorful, and expressive. I love how they depict Amira’s emotions throughout the story.

Edit added 4/15/21- This was my granddaughter’s requested bedtime story last night. We read to her over FaceTime and aim the camera at the pages. She loved the book! She was so worried for Amira. My granddaughter is in 1st grade and when she heard that Amira might miss picture day she instantly understood the importance. She said, “She won’t be in the book! (Yearbook)” Like me, she loves Amira’s facial expressions. Both author and artist were hits with my granddaughter. We look forward to reading it to her again.
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2 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on April 14, 2021
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5.0 out of 5 stars Sweet and fun story sharing a real view of Eid day
By NATASHA K. on April 13, 2021
This story truly shows the joy and drama of Eid day from a kids perspective. Like all religious minorities, I had to balance my most important holiday Eid, with exams and events. The struggle of Amira is real! Amira supports her family (wonderful behavior to model) but finds a way to get her wish too. My 5 and 6 yo were at the edge of their seats until the very end! I definitely will gift this book to my teacher!
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4 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on April 13, 2022
Reviewed in the United States on April 14, 2021
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5.0 out of 5 stars I highly recommend this!
By Amazon Customer on April 14, 2021
I absolutely loved this book. It reminded me of when I had to choose between fun activities at school or Eid celebrations as a kid. It got me all choked up! My 5 year old and 8 year old genuinely loved it too. Beautiful writing and illustrations.
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3 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on April 15, 2021
3 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on April 13, 2021
2 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on April 17, 2021
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Top reviews from other countries

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5.0 out of 5 stars Charming story about Eid falling on Picture Day
Reviewed in Canada on April 19, 2021