The Porridge Pot Goblin
Written by: Jacqueline Jules
Illustrated by: Hector Borlasca
Publisher: Apples and Honey Press, 2022
Themes: siblings, Jewish heritage, problem solving
While Rose and Benny help prepare for Shabbat, they have the misfortune to be visited by none other than a goblin. It’s invisible, but still leaves tracks and a mess in its wake. The siblings have to fix up a solution so that their Shabbat will be a peaceful one.
There are so many delightful parts to The Porridge Pot Goblin.
Benny and Rose’s relationship is one of those highlights. They are kind to each other, helpful to their hardworking mom, and brainstorm together. And the fact that their mom works as a midwife/doula/OB is such a fantastic little element.
The art is so bright and sharp, it works well to accentuate the action and vibrance of the story. And they’re funny! The little foot sticking out from underneath something (from where might give the end away) was entirely giggle-worthy.
The invisibility is part of the authentic representation of goblins in Jewish folklore, and that fact also made the story feel more universal. Kids everywhere feel a connection to characters dealing with troubles that can’t be seen.
And the way the story weaves in showing and teaching about Shabbat traditions without slowing the pace of the action was well done. The backmatter is the right length to read all the way through with children, and it is a wonderful encouraging and educational addition.
With characters determined to work together to find a solution to their goblin-y problem (and good doses of humor and learning thrown in), this is a book that would be a great read aloud to share with kids 4 and up.
Challah recipe from Kosher.com
Create your own “porridge” pot by decorating terra cotta planters or coffee tins.
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