"While Eden Ross Lipson’s Applesauce Season remains the gold standard on the subject, Soffer’s debut adds a fun Jewish angle to the profound resonance of a humble fruit puree. For school-aged Katy, applesauce-making and Rosh Hashanah are inextricably linked. It’s not just because it’s a food custom associated with the Jewish New Year—Katy and her mother have created a tradition of their own, “Apple Day,” which starts with a trip to a local orchard and ends with the kitchen filled “with the sweet smell of apples and cinnamon. Just thinking about it made Katy’s mouth water.” Soffer understands how kids savor rituals: every step is significant, and anticipation is to be broadly shared. When it looks like Apple Day might be derailed by the early arrival of Katy’s new cousin, her circle of friends and supporters—who range from peers to the woman who cuts her hair—pitches in. McMahon’s (All Kinds of Kids) cartooned drawings don’t offer much emotional depth, but they’re smartly composed and a solid accompaniment to Soffer’s upbeat and deeply empathic prose."
"This book will make readers hungry for applesauce."
"There’s a theory that the old Disney live-action movies were popular because the kids acted like adults and the adults acted like kids. In this book, Katy has no choice but to act like an adult. Her aunt is in labor, and her mother can’t be home until after the baby is born. It’s the Jewish New Year, and Katy was expecting to make applesauce with her mom—following the family tradition—but all her dad can do is stare helplessly at the ingredients lined up on the counter. Katy starts typing on the computer until a recipe pops up. Younger readers may find it very satisfying when her father asks, “What’s next?” This book is full of such small, satisfying moments. The highlight may be a sequence in which, one by one, Katy’s friends, her rabbi and even the neighborhood crossing guard bring her apples. They know her mother is away. The characters in McMahon’s illustrations, painted in warm colors, all look like people readers might want to know. In the last scene, Katy reaches into her pocket and pulls out a jar of applesauce for the new baby. It’s just what an adult would do."
"This is a simple story and on the face of it a slight one, but underneath, it’s an extremely moving tale."