Once Upon a Sari (Hardcover)

Once Upon a Sari By Zenia Wadhwani, Avani Dwivedi (Illustrator) Cover Image

Once Upon a Sari (Hardcover)

By Zenia Wadhwani, Avani Dwivedi (Illustrator)


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A picture book about a little girl who gets into her mom's saris and makes a glorious, colorful mess and discovers the memories attached to each sari.

Avani is having a wonderful time looking at all of her mother's saris, but she soon realizes she's made a big mess.

When her mom comes in, Avani expects a scolding, but instead, her mom sits down with her and tells her about the memories associated with each sari: memories of weddings and celebrations, memories of when and where the sari came from. And, in case of one very special sari, memories that were passed down from her parents and grandparents. 

A beautiful and vibrant reflection on how what we wear connects us to big and small moments in our lives, Once Upon a Sari is a colorful feast for the eyes and the heart.
ZENIA WADHWANI is the author of 'Twas the Night Before Diwali, a South Asian rendition of a familiar holiday poem, and the introduction of a new character to the much-celebrated festival of Diwali, the mithai monster! Zenia is an avid reader, an advocate for literacy and a promoter of emerging writers, but it took the pandemic and a looming milestone birthday to unleash her first children's story. By day, Zenia spends her time working on issues of equity and social justice; by night, she lets her creativity flow into her writing. Zenia lives in Toronto, Canada, with her family, and many of her stories are inspired by her daughter Avani.

AVANI DWIVEDI ​is an author and illustrator living in Jersey City, USA. She graduated from the Maryland Institute College of Art with a B.F.A. in illustration. Avani grew up in Mumbai, India, and later moved to the United States to pursue her passion of becoming an artist. Even when away from home, she held on to her most precious gems: memories of her sweet childhood, the lived experience of being a South Asian woman and her love for creating whimsical art. She aims to paint stories and illustrations through which she can share a more diverse perspective of the world.
Product Details ISBN: 9781774880944
ISBN-10: 1774880946
Publisher: Tundra Books
Publication Date: May 7th, 2024
Pages: 48
Language: English
"When young Avani ventures into the cabinet that holds her mother’s saris, a wealth of family stories come to light in this reflective work that introduces themes of legacy and memory. . . . Dwivedi’s saturated illustrations are nearly tactile in their richness, hand-rendered in watercolor, gouache, and colored pencil on paper." Publishers Weekly

"Stylized, comic-style illustrations feature traditional sari colors and designs; the artwork is laced with hints of the rich variety of handcrafted saris. A celebration of culture and memory." —Kirkus Reviews

"An essential purchase on an underrepresented topic for school and public libraries." School Library Journal