Diwali, also spelled Divali, is one of the major religious festivals in Hinduism, Jainism, and Sikhism, lasting for five days from the 13th day of the dark half of the lunar month Ashvina to the second day of the light half of the lunar month Karttika. Celebrated by more than 800 million people around the world, the word Diwali is Sanskrit and it means "row of lights." Each day of the festival has a special meaning, Dhanteras or Day of Fortune, Naraka Chaturdashi or Day of Knowledge, Diwali or Day of Light, Annuk or New Year and Bhai Duj or Day of love between siblings.
The holiday is a celebration of light over darkness and good triumphing over evil. Households who celebrate mark the holiday by cleaning their homes and decorating them with lights, including oil lamps called "diya," preparing and sharing special meals, exchanging gifts, creating intricate Rangoli art and more. This Diwali, DC Public Library invites you to check out these beautiful picture books about the holiday to read with your family!
Shubh Diwali!, Written by Chitra Soundar, Illustrated by Charlene Chua
Diwali has arrived! Rangoli art decorates the floor, and strings of flowers hang around the doors. Now it's time to ring the bells, light the lamps, and welcome the New Year with family and friends. Shubh Diwali is a sweet introduction to the Hindu festival of lights.
Happy Diwali!, Written by Sanyuta Mathur, Illustrated by Courtney Pippin-Mathur
This joyful family story follows a little girl from dawn to dusk as she draws rangolis to welcome guests, prepares food with her family including pani puri and chana masala, dresses up in colorful clothing, participates in the puja, and lights the diyas in honor of Diwali: the Hindu festival of lights. Excitement, history, and traditions abound in this vibrant celebration of Diwali, complete with a glossary, and delicious recipes for mango lassi, sukhe aloo, and puri.
My Diwali Light, Written by Raakhee Mirchandani, Illustrated by Supriya Kelkar
Devi loves the Diwali season. It's a time to wear her favorite red bindi and eat samosas until she bursts! Make mithai and design rangoli with her papa. And paint diyas with her nani--a reminder to shine her light brightly all year long. This joyful story, with vibrant collage illustrations, follows one girl's Diwali traditions as her family celebrates their favorite holiday with the ones they love.
It's Diwali!, Surishtha Sehgal and Kabir Sehgal, Ilustrated by Archana Sreenivasan
Count up to ten and back down again to the tune of "One, Two, Buckle My Shoe" while learning about the traditions that make Diwali a fun-filled festival! Celebrated during autumn harvest, Diwali symbolizes the triumph of good over evil and light over darkness. From sweet treats to intricate henna designs to exciting firework displays, kids will delight in this vibrant glimpse into the Festival of Lights.
Binny's Diwali, Written by Thrity Umrigar, Illustrated by Nidhi Chanani