The Butter Man

The Butter Man Book CoverNora is hungry and anxiously awaits a delicious Saturday dinner of couscous, meat, and vegetables. While her Moroccan-born baba, which means father, prepares the meal, he tells her a story from his childhood in the High Atlas Mountains. During a time of famine, Baba learns valuable life lessons of perseverance, patience, and hope when Nora’s grandfather has to travel far to find work. Each day, Nora’s father hopes for the butter man to pass through his village so he can enjoy the savory taste of butter on the little bread he has. Finally when Nora’s grandfather returns, he brings food that is prepared into a wonderful feast. In the months that follow grandfather’s return, rain begins to fall and the earth can sustain crops once again. Colorful gouache illustrations add to the warm, hopeful tone of the engrossing story that presents what it may feel like to experience scarcity in a sensitive, poignant manner. An author’s note delves deeper into village life, peddlers who walk from village to village, traditional clothing, and customs of Berbers, native people of North Africa. cc
Title: The Butter Man
Author: Elizabeth Alalou and Ali Alalou
: Julie Klear Essakalli
: Charlesbridge
: 2011
Original language
: English
: 978-1-58089-128-8
Paperback pages
: 32
Age range
: 6-9
: Picture book
Book setting
: Morocco
Author’s ethnicity
: Moroccan
Author’s residence
: United States
Illustrator’s residence
: Morocco
: 2009 Middle East Book Award
: Atlas Mountains, Berbers, Drought, Family, Famine, Hardship, Imazighen, Meals, Moroccan culture, Morocco, North Africa, Travel

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