Friendly and cheerful monster-like creatures are the protagonists of this lovely story told in rhyme. They all observe various Shabbat rituals, singing Lecha Dodi loudly, lighting the Shabbat candles, making kiddush, and eating challah. This new book both introduces Shabbat for the young listener and, at the same time, encourages tolerance and acceptance of others. A new monster tries to break into the group but finds himself excluded and ignored, which saddens him. In a non-preachy fashion, the sweet story teaches why this special day is about more than observance, games, and good food. By including him, the monsters find the real meaning of Shabbat. The monsters are cute and cuddly, and not at all scary.
One page of each two-page grouping has text, followed by a colorful, whimsical, and fun-filled illustration on the next page.
Acceptance of monsters who are different is beautifully modeled. Several Hebrew terms are included without definition, such as Kiddush, Challah, and Lecha Dodi, providing teachable moments. Given the presentation, this can be used as a trigger for various topics of interest. Shabbat Monsters is volume one of a trilogy called Jewish Monsters, which includes Chanukah Monsters and Kosher Monsters. Recommended for ages 2 – 5 at home and in structured preschool environments.