This book about celebrating spring arrived last week, just in time for Maslenitsa. What is Maslenitsa, you ask? It's Pancake Week! From A New Beginning: Celebrating the Spring Equinox by Wendy Pfeffer; illustrated by Linda Bleck (Dutton, 2008): "Families [in Russia] ate warm, round, golden pancakes [blini] that looked the sun. The more butter they spread on each pancake, the hotter the sun was supposed to be during the coming summer." We love pancakes over here and were thrilled to discover that Maslenitsa, a Russian folk and religious holiday, is being celebrated this week. More pancakes, please!
Hmmm (mmm). I wonder if How Mama Brought the Spring by Fran Manushkin; illustrated by Holly Berry (also Dutton, 2008) has anything to do with the Russian folk tradition of Maslenitsa (if not the religious one, obviously)? I haven't read it yet, although I have read Elizabeth Bird's review at A Fuse #8 Production (2/22/2008). In that book, Mama tells Rosy about how Grandma Beatrice once brought spring to Minsk by making blintzes (Rosy and Mama try the same thing in Chicago; good luck!). Blintzes, blini: it makes sense to me. What do you think?