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Priya Dreams of Marigolds & Masala

4.14  ·  Rating details ·  133 ratings  ·  31 reviews
Priya lives in the United States and her family is from India. She feels the magic of the place that her family comes from through her Babi Ba’s colorful descriptions of India – from the warm smell of spices to the swish-swish sound of a rustling sari. Together, Priya and Babi Ba make their heritage live on through the traditions that they infuse into their everyday lives. ...more
Hardcover, First Edition, 36 pages
Published March 26th 2019 by Beaver's Pond Press
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Average rating 4.14  · 
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 ·  133 ratings  ·  31 reviews

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Diane Konjura
Jan 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful, young, Indian American Priya learns who she is, her identity and culture, from her Babi Ba (Grandma). Together they make rotli as Ba shares her love of India through the smells of masala , the sounds of motorbikes, tuk-tuk, and a cow, the colorful rainbow of saris in a shop, and the tradition of garland marigolds in a doorway. Priya shares her Indian culture with her classmates by making a garland of paper marigolds that she gives to her Ba as a reminder of the home she sometimes miss ...more
Lin Lin
Priya, an Indian-American girl, grows up in a house with a garland of bright orange marigolds hanging in the doorway. Her house always stands out in a small street of a small town in the United States. My children can relate so closely to this book as they live and grow up in a household where we pass around special foods for dinner, greet our elders who stay with us from another country, and visit grocery stores where we can speak our native languages. "Sharing India with others is the very bes ...more
Carolyn Klassen
Nov 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
Really sweet story about culture, remembrance, and family relationships. India for Priya's Babi Ba isn't just a geographical location, it's a smell, a sound, a taste, a feeling. I love how Priya shares these stories with her classmates and they help her make memories. ...more
Aug 31, 2020 rated it liked it
I have a deep appreciation for stories of children and their grandparents - especially when that story involves a sharing of cultural identity. Three things really stood out for me in this book. 1. Quote “Sharing India with others is the very best way to carry it with you.” 2. The explanation of cultural traditions and foreign words in the back. 3. The authors note explaining her motivation for the book based on her personal experiences.
Nov 01, 2019 rated it liked it
Lovely picture book of a young girl listening to her grandmother's memories of India, then sharing them at school so that her classmates join her in making paper flowers to cheer her grandmother. Cultural pride shines in this story. ...more
Jo Oehrlein
Jan 14, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Love how Priya is inspired to help her grandmother through a cold winter by making paper marigolds and how her whole class joins in.

Kudos to the art teacher who leaves enough time for kids to try things on their own.
Sheri Hoyte Books
Jan 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Like the warm and cozy tone of the pages, “Priya Dreams of Marigolds & Masala” is an inviting, inspirational message to kids of all colors, backgrounds, genders, religious and spiritual beliefs, etc. to embrace all of the things that make us unique, amazing individuals.

Priya rushes home from school every day to help her Babi Ba make roti a flatbread and common staple in her family. Every day Priya asks Babi Ba about India and every day, Babi Ba shares with her granddaughter the history of India
Ana Calabresi
Priya is an Indian-American girl who bakes rotli with her Babi Ba every day after school. She has never been to India, but she experiences her heritage through her Babi Ba’s memories. Priya’s grandmother describes India with delightful language, exploring all senses: colorful fabrics and flowers, aromatic spices, the sounds of the city, the swishing of the sari on her body, the warmth of the sun and the coolness of the downpours (monsoons).

Babi Ba enjoys picking up marigolds and stringing them
What a lovely book about family and our cultural heritage. Priya is a young Indian American girl and when she asked her grandmother (Babi Ba) what India is like, we are taken through several pages showing us the sights and senses of India from the smells of spices in the spice market to the sound of motorbikes whizzing by in the streets to shops with stacks of rainbow saris to marigolds strung up on storefronts and doorways of homes. Priya realizes when winter arrives that her Ba isn't able to g ...more
Oct 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Priya lives with her family in the United States. Her’s is the only house in her neighborhood where an Indian family lives. Priya loves to help her grandmother make rotli for dinner when she gets home. As they make the flatbread, her Babi Ba tells her about India’s spice markets, the architecture, the noises of the traffic, and the monsoon rains. Their house has marigolds strung over the door just like those in India. Priya longs to see India for herself. When winter comes, Babi Ba doesn’t hang ...more
Jul 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Beautiful book! Glorious illustrations that combine hand drawn and digital really perfectly.

I bought this book recently because even here in Oakland, my son is the only Indian-American on our street (though one of several in his preschool class). Plus, it talks about different cultural traditions, like rolling out chapatis (called rotlis by the Gujarati family in the book),which my son loves doing with his grandmother when she visits. He is 4 and he likes the book quite a bit.

My only quibble is
Elizabeth Madarang
Jan 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
What a special children's book! This thoughtful story tells about an Indian American girl, Priya, and the loving bond she shares with her grandmother, Babi Ba. Colorful illustrations and descriptive Indian terms bring Babi Ba's India to life as she fondly shares her memories with Priya. Priya recognizes the sacrifice Babi Ba has made to come with her family to the United States and takes it upon herself to bring a little bit of India to Babi Ba. Priya's classmates join in the project.Through lea ...more
Jan 16, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: picture-books
In this story, Priya's grandmother tells her all about life in India. In the winter, when she can't tend her marigolds in the front garden, Priya and her classmates make her grandmother a garland of paper marigolds. Though the themes of family, community, celebrating your culture, and working together were clear, at times, I wasn't sure of the ultimate message of this book, largely due to the two poems at the beginning and end. They didn't really add to the story and felt a bit out of place, and ...more
Aug 14, 2020 rated it really liked it
A sweet story with such lovely illustrations. This book is definitely focused on what’s picturesque and delicious about India, but I think that only becomes a drawback if complex cultures and experiences become reduced to these elements. That isn’t quite happening here. There are parallel pages at the start and end of the story that show that what makes Priya’s family seem foreign in the US is typical in Gujarat. There’s Babi Ba being sad in the winter and possibly missing India. And the author’ ...more
Jan 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: food, yarc2020, sarc2020
The relationship between Priya and her grandmother is really at the center of this story. Priya's grandmother shares things (stories and ideas and traditions and food) about India with Priya, and Priya helps her grandmother feel more at home.

This is also about identity. Priya has never been to India and always asks her grandmother about it. The things she does with her grandmother are a connection to India; getting help from others at school in making a paper marigold chain to hang during winter
A sweet story about taking pride in the ways your family might be different from others and exploring your cultural heritage. End notes at the back give a pronunciation guide and a description of the meanings behind some of the items mentioned in the story. This book will make you want to go eat some yummy Indian food, plant marigolds, and drink cha!
Mar 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Grandmother and India requests
Recommended to June by:
After school Priya helps her grandmother from India make rotli while her Babi Ba tells her stories of India. When winter comes and her grandmother no longer goes outside to make garlands of marigolds Priya's friends help her make a garland of paper marigolds in art class ...more
Aug 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Such a gorgeous, gentle book. It feels like a masala scented hug for this first generation kid.
A young Indian-American girl discovers and explores her Indian roots.
Oct 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A young child discovers the connections between their family's roots in India and their life in the US. Based on the author's childhood. ...more
Oct 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Great book explaining India.
Words shared with meanings in the back
written for multiple levels
Miss Sarah
Nov 06, 2019 rated it liked it
A preschool and up book about an American girl whose grandmothers descriptions of India make the country part of her everyday life.
Lovely story and pictures. Great way to learn about the foods from around the world.
Amanda Geske
Feb 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
"It's the rainbow of saris stacked to the ceiling in a shop and the quiet swish-swish of a sari with every step." ...more
Jillian Heise
This is a fabulous and heart-warming story of family traditions and immigrant families keeping memories alive and pride in one's culture and heritage. ...more
Jun 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Excellent story and gorgeous illustrations!
Nancy Eyre
I love all the sensory language in this book as Priya makes roti with her grandmother who tells stories of India.
Great selection to add diversity to elementary library and help children learn about other cultures.
Mar 21, 2021 rated it really liked it
Beautiful family story, building my understanding of another culture. Loved it!
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Meenal Patel is an artist, designer, and author based in San Francisco, California. She is inspired by family, childhood wonder, strong women, textures in nature, and her Indian-American heritage. When she’s not making art, she loves reading to her nieces, cooking chana masala, eating ice cream, visiting her home state of Minnesota and being in the beautiful outdoor spaces of California.

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