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Building a Jewish Library

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Bible and Torah Commentary
Children's Books
Contemporary Jewish Life
Cookbooks for the Jewish Home
Family Life and Parent's Guides
Fiction and Literature
Hebrew Language
History and Archeology
Holocaust
Israel and Zionism
Jewish Holidays
Jewish Thought
Kashrut
Prayer Books and Guides
Reference
Spirituality
Talmud and Rabbinic Literature
Women's Voices and Ritual

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Children's Books: Baby and Preschool

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Adler, David A.. A Picture Book of Hanukkah. Holiday House. 1982. AISN/ISBN: 0823405745.

For ages 3 and up. This volume retells the story of Chanukah with great historical accuracy, but it preserves the story of the miracle of the oil. The story is told clearly and concisely with beautiful illustrations. There is also a short section at the end outlining the customs observed in connection with Chanukah.

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Adler, David A.. A Picture Book of Jewish Holidays. Holiday House. 1981. AISN/ISBN: 082340756X.

For ages 4 and up. This is a book of facts which cover the major festivals and some of the minor holidays. The ideas expressed are may be sophisticated for very young children.

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Adler, David A.. A Picture Book of Passover. Holiday House. 1982. AISN/ISBN: 0823404390.

For ages 4 and up. This wonderfully illustrated book comprises a retelling of the story of the Exodus, from the arrival of Joseph in Egypt through the Parting of the Reed Sea. It is followed by a brief summary of customs associated with the observance of Passover. The story does not follow the Biblical narrative faithfully; it draws on midrashim to embellish the tale.

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Adler, David A.. The House on the Roof: A Sukkot Story. Bonim Books. 1976. AISN/ISBN: 0930494350.

For ages 3 and up. This is a delightful story about a grandfather who goes about gathering wooden crates, old leaves, old magazines and all sorts of things other people consider to be junk while his landlady complains. Then he invites his grandchildren up to the sukkah he has built on the roof. The landlady takes him to court, insisting he remove the sukkah and the judge's decision provides a humorous ending. This is a lovely book which children even too young to understand the ending, will enjoy.

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Auerbach, Julie Jaslow. Everything's Changing ? It's Pesach!. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1986. AISN/ISBN: 0930494539.

For ages 4 and up. In rhyming verse, a young girl explains how her family prepares for Pesach.

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Baum, Maxie. I Have a Little Dreidel. Cartwheel Books. 2006. AISN/ISBN: 0439649978.

For Preschool to Grade 2. A favorite Hanukkah song is given new life in this charmingly illustrated variation. Following the traditional first verse (I have a little dreidel; I made it out of clay.), the rhyming text depicts a convivial family gathering to make latkes, light the menorah, and play a joyful game of dreidel, with each new stanza followed by the familiar chorus. Distinctive, folk-art-style illustrations feature a mix of patterns and vibrant solids, thick lines and simple shapes, while the bottom third of each spread frames the text in a bold blue-and-white woodcut-like design. Although the text runs a bit long, the brilliant look of this book is sure to please readers.

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Baynes, Pauline. Noah and the Ark. Henry Holt and Company. 1988. AISN/ISBN: 0805008861.

For ages 4 and up. Nice retelling, well illustrated.

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Behrens, June. Hanukkah. Scholastic Library Publishing. 1991. AISN/ISBN: 051642386X.

For ages 2 and up. This book tells the story of Chanukah in simple language; the use of photographs gives it a delightful change of pace. It describes one family's celebration of Chanukah. The book contains many photographs of the family preparing latkes, lighting the menorah, singing, playing dreidel, having a Chanukah party and other activities.

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Bogot, Howard I. and Mary K. Bogot. Seven Animal Stories for Children. Sagebrush Education Resource. 1997. AISN/ISBN: 0613879791.

For ages 2 to 4 (read aloud); 4 to 7 (read alone). Seven stories drawn from the bible, aggadah and folklore are presented here. Note: the vocabulary is well beyond beginning readers and the major illustrations are arranged so that children cannot see them while the text is being read to them. Still, the stories are good and very well told and Harry Araten's illustrations are appealing.

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Chanover, Hyman and Alice Chanover. Pesah is Coming!. United Synagogue of America. 1956. AISN/ISBN: 0838107133.

For ages 2 and up. This book discusses a family's efforts to change dishes and pots in preparation for Passover (they even buy the cat new dishes), followed by a discussion of how to make charoset and clean the house.

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Chapman, Carol. The Tale of Meshka the Kvetch. E.P. Dutton. 1980. AISN/ISBN: 0525444947.

For ages 3 and up. This is a delightful story about a woman's continual complaining which eventually comes true: her son turns into a bump on a pickle, her daughter does not recognize her, her home shrinks and her feet turn into melons. The rabbi tells her that this is a rare syndrome called "Kvecher's Itch." The only solution is to praise the good in her life. Meshka learns to do this and eventually becomes happier as a result.

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Cohen, Barbara. Yussel's Prayer: A Yom Kippur Story. Lothrop, Lee & Shepard Co. 1981. AISN/ISBN: 0688004601.

For ages 4 and up. This is a wonderful book about prayer. It is about Reb Meir who is too wrapped up in his business dealings to concentrate on praying on Yom Kippur and about a young boy named Yussel who cannot read the prayerbook himself, but who prays through the music he makes with his flute and about the rabbi who knows that the Gates of Heaven are not open until God hears sincere prayers. This story assures children that God hears their prayers, however they express them, if they are sincere.

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Cohn, Janice and Bill Farnsworth. The Christmas Menorahs: How a Town Fought Hate. Albert Whitman & Company. 2000. AISN/ISBN: 0807511536.

For ages 4 to 8. Based on a true incident that occurred in Billings, Montana, this story begins when a rock is thrown through a boy's bedroom window in which a menorah is displayed. The boy, Isaac, is frightened and unsure whether he wants to put the menorah back. His parents call the police, and his mother goes on television and to a meeting to talk about hate crimes in the community. Inspired by stories of the Danish people helping their Jewish neighbors during World War II, the people of Billings put menorahs in their windows to take a stand against bigotry. When a schoolmate supports Isaac, he takes his own stand by returning the menorah to its place. Although the plot seems a little stilted at times, Cohn deals with the issues in a way children can readily understand. Throughout the book, realistic, soft-focus oil paintings dramatize the action and personalize the characters. A fine book for parents and teachers who want to discuss prejudice and hate crimes with their children, with background information provided in the introduction.

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Cone, Molly. Purim. Thomas Y. Crowell Company. 1967. AISN/ISBN: 0690659229.

For ages 2 and up. This is a clear and detailed retelling of the story of Esther which is true to the biblical account. It explains how Purim is observed at the end. The illustrations are interesting.

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Cone, Molly. The Story of Shabbat. HarperCollins Publishers. 2000. AISN/ISBN: 0060279443.

For ages 3 and up. This informative book tells how the Jewish Sabbath, called Shabbat, originated. It also tells how it has been celebrated at different times and how to celebrate it now. The new illustrations by Emily Lisker include even more Jewish traditions. They are bright and clear paintings, acrylics on canvas. At the end there is a recipe for challah and instructions on how to make a challah cover. This is a very good book for children who are Jewish or who want to learn more about the Jewish Sabbath.

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Cowan, Paul and Rachel Cowan. A Torah is Written. Jewish Publication Society. 1992. AISN/ISBN: 0827602707.

Preschool. This book about the traditions and scribal art of writing a Sefer Torah is sensitively and lovingly written and illustrated with photographs of an actual scribe at work.

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DePaola, Tomie. Noah and the Ark. Winston Press. 1983. AISN/ISBN: 0685072223.

Preschool. A retelling of the story of the flood with colorful illustrations.

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Edwards, Michelle. Blessed Are You. Lothrop, Lee & Shepard Co. 1993. AISN/ISBN: 0688107591.

For ages 5 and up. A children's compendium of everyday prayers (mostly berachot) with magnificent painted illustrations by the author which inspire sensitivity, appreciation, prayerfulness and spirituality among young children.

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Edwards, Michelle. Chicken Man. Lothrop, Lee & Shepard Co. 1991. AISN/ISBN: 0688097081.

For ages 4 to 8. Chicken Man moves from job to job on Kibbutz Hanan because everyone wants his job. What they don't understand is that it is Chicken Man's positive attitude that makes the job good.

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Elborn, Andrew and Ivan Gantschev. Noah and the Ark and the Animals. Verlag Neugebauer Press. 1984. AISN/ISBN: 0907234585.

For ages 4 to 6. A mare tells her colt the story of the flood in order to quell his fears that it will never stop raining. The biblical story is told simply and in a straight-forward manner with nice watercolor illustrations.

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Epstein, Sylvia and Hagit Migron. How the Rosh Hashanah Challah Became Round. Gefen Publishing House, Ltd. 1993. AISN/ISBN: 9652290955.

For ages 4 to 8. Yossi's terrible tumble turns out to be a terrific triumph! A tale with year-round appeal, even though it takes place on Rosh Hashanah. A delightful book for primary age children!

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Feder, Harriet K.. Not Yet, Elijah!. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1988. AISN/ISBN: 0930494954.

For ages 4 to 8. A whimsical tale for Pesach in rhyming verse in which the Prophet Elijah waits impatiently outside the door until it is his turn to enter and celebrate.

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Fisher, Leonard Everett. Moses. Holiday House. 1995. AISN/ISBN: 0823411494.

For ages 4 to 8. An excellent retelling of the Exodus story with moving, dramatic illustrations.

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Fluek, Toby Knobel. Passover As I Remember It. Alfred A. Knopf. 1994. AISN/ISBN: 0679838767.

For ages 4 to 8. A grandmother recounts her memories of how Pesach was celebrated in her home in Poland in the years before World War II.

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Freedman, Florence B.. Brothers. Harper & Row. 1985. AISN/ISBN: 0060218711.

For ages 4 to 8. In a wonderful and enchanting tale about love and selflessness, two brothers think of each other's welfare before his own. According to tradition, Solomon built the Temple on the spot in Jerusalem where these two brothers met one moonlit night.

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Gallant, Janet. My Brother's Bar Mitzvah. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1990. AISN/ISBN: 0929371216.

For ages 4 to 8. A girl is worried that her brother, who does not strike her as the epitomy of maturity, will not be ready to become a Bar Mitzvah in time.

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Gelman, Rita Golden. Queen Esther Saves Her People. Scholastic. 1998. AISN/ISBN: 0590470256.

For ages 3 to 7. In a direct and lively style that conveys its intensity and drama, Gelman retells the stirring story of a young woman who risks her own life to save her people when the prime minister orders that all of the Jews in Persia be killed. The bold, full-color gouache paintings in folk-art style are full of details about court life in Persia. Double-spread pages are often framed in a manner that accentuates the story's events. Thus, the bricks of the palace walls, the arches of the palace interior, or the gallows with a hanging rope surrounding the text become effective design elements. "A Purim Notebook" gives background information on the holiday and its celebration. Queen Esther is a fine choice for reading aloud during the Purim festival, which recounts this inspiring event.

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Gersator, Phillis. Honi and His Magic Circle. Jewish Publication Society. 1979. AISN/ISBN: 0827601670.

For ages 4 to 8. Talmudic tales of Honi Ha-Ma'aggel retold beautifully.

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Gold-Vukson, Marji E. and Leslie Evans. Grandpa and Me on Tu B'Shevat. Kar-Ben Publishing. 2004. AISN/ISBN: 1580131220.

For Preschool to Grade 2. Using rhyming cumulative verse reminiscent of "This Is the House That Jack Built," Gold-Vukson describes how a boy and his grandfather plant a tree to celebrate the Jewish New Year for Trees or Tu B'Shevat. They dig a hole, plant a seed, and then water and tend the young sapling. Years later they picnic in the shade, enjoy a bird's song, and taste the juicy apples the tree provides. At the end, the boy has grown up and has a grandson of his own with whom he can continue the tradition. Evan's bold woodcut-style illustrations are perfectly suited to this naturalistic story and in keeping with the holiday's tone. Varied perspectives, some from the top of the tree, help to showcase the tree's attributes and the pleasure it affords. A good choice for read-alouds about the celebration, this can also be used with books about Earth Day or Arbor Day celebrations to provide cultural comparison. A list of 10 ways to celebrate the holiday is appended.

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Goldin, Barbara Diamond. Just Enough is Plenty. Viking Kestrel. 1988. AISN/ISBN: 0140507876.

For ages 4 to 8. A Chanukah tale about sharing and miracles and the prophet Elijah. The illustrations by Seymour Schwast are especially wonderful.

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Goldin, Barbara Diamond. The World's Birthday. Harcourt Brace & Company. 1990. AISN/ISBN: 0152996486.

For ages 4 to 8. A young boy plans a birthday party for the world to celebrate Rosh Hashanah.

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Goldin, Barbara Diamond and Laura Elizabeth Sucher. Night Lights: A Sukkot Story. URJ Press. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 0807408034.

For ages 4 to 8. Goldin uses the story of two siblings spending a night in the family sukkah-a small, temporary hut roofed with tree branches that is constructed during the Jewish fall harvest festival of Sukkot-as a vehicle to help explain the holiday. Daniel and his older sister help their parents to build and decorate the sukkah, and then share a family meal inside it. Afterwards, trying to settle down to sleep, the boy becomes nervously aware of night sounds and shapes, but is reassured by his sister's comparison of brightly shining stars and moon to the night light in his bedroom. Bold, full-and double-page linocuts, richly colored with oils and pastels, feature caricaturelike people, imaginary monsters, and a particularly expressive pet cat. The first page of black text, set against a peach and blue sky, is a bit difficult to read, but the volume as a whole is well designed and attractive. A page of information about Sukkot concludes the book. Because most young children can relate to Daniel's fear of the dark, the story will be appreciated by both general and Jewish audiences.

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Goldin, Barbara Diamond and Robert Andrew Parker. The Magician's Visit. Puffin. 1995. AISN/ISBN: 0140544550.

For ages 4 to 8. A retelling of the I.L. Peretz tale. A mysterious magician visits a town during Passover, amazing people with his spells and tricks. When he appears at a poor couple's humble home and creates a sumptuous Seder, they are fearful of his magic and entreat their rabbi for advice. The shivery sense of mystery and possible danger that runs through this story mesmerizes children, who feel the suspense and delight in learning, with the characters, that the magician's visit brought good and not evil. Excellent illustrations enhance a well-told tale.

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Goldreich, Gloria. Ten Traditional Jewish Children's Stories. Pitspopany Press. 1996. AISN/ISBN: 0943706696.

Award-winning author Gloria Goldreich has taken the traditional Jewish stories of l9th and 20th century Europe and woven them into a beautiful tapestry of wonder and joy for young children. The entire book is a treasure that children of all ages will enjoy with their elders for years to come.

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Goldstein, Andrew. My Very Own Jewish Home. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1983. AISN/ISBN: 0930494083.

For ages 4 to 8. A young girl takes young readers on a tour of her home, pointing out the many signs of Jewish tradition evident there.

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Greene, Jacqueline Dembar. Butchers and Bakers, Rabbis and Kings. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1984. AISN/ISBN: 0930494288.

For ages 4 to 8. The story of the Jewish community of Tudela, in Spain, in 1114, which sought to convince the new king to grant them the rights to which they were accostumed. This intriguing anecdote from Jewish history provides insight into life in the Middle Ages.

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Greene, Rhonda Gowler. The Beautiful World That G-d Made. Eerdmans Books for Young Readers. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 0802852130.

Bible story for preschool to grade 2. A free rendering of the Creation story is given by a short, rhyming verse that builds in cumulative detail. Adding drama to the narrative are outstanding ink and collage illustrations.

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Grode, Phyllis. Sophie's Name. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1990. AISN/ISBN: 0929371186.

For ages 4 to 8. Sophie Davida Finkle-Cohen thinks her name is long and cumbersome. She decides to become "Sue" until she learns where each part of her name originated.

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Groner, Judyth Saypol and Madeline Wikler. My Very Own Jewish Community. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1984. AISN/ISBN: 0930494326.

For ages 4 to 8. Text and photographs illustrate a child's view of the Jewish community, including syangogues, schools, stores and old age home.

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Haas, Shelly O.. Daddy's Chair. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1991. AISN/ISBN: 0970248210.

For ages 4 to 8. A young boy sits shiva with his family after his father's death, learning about Jewish customs pertaining to the week of mourning, and coming to grips with his father's death.

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Heiligman, Deborah. Holidays Around the World: Celebrate Hanukkah: With Light, Latkes, and Dreidels. National Geographic Children's Books. 2006. AISN/ISBN: 0792259246.

For ages 4 to 8. This offering from the Holidays around the World series introduces children to the Jewish Festival of Lights. Heiligman recounts the holiday's history and origins and describes how it is celebrated today-with candles, special foods such as potato latkes, and games such as dreidel. The main text is succinct and appropriate for reading aloud; the detailed appendix features directions for lighting a menorah, prayers, a recipe for latkes, instructions for playing dreidel, a bibliography, a glossary, and a note from a subject expert. Decorating the pages are numerous crisp, full-color photos depicting celebrations in countries as diverse as Israel, India, Peru, Uganda, Italy, Korea, and the U.S. An attractive, informative title that will be welcomed in any library.

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Hershenhorn, Esther. Chicken Soup by Heart. Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 0689826656.

For preschool to grade 2. When his sitter, Mrs. Gittel, "the Chicken Soup Queen," gets the flu, a "nice boychik" named Rudie Dinkins concocts for her, with his mama's help, the delicious soup that she makes to cure him of everything from a chest cold to a stomach ache. The Yiddish-flavored style in which this charming story of an inter-generational friendship is told sounds as though Mrs. Gittel herself is telling it. Well illustrated.

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Hest, Amy. The Ring and the Window Seat. Scholastic. 1990. AISN/ISBN: 0590413503.

For ages 4 to 8. A young girl leanrs to realign her priorities when she meets a man whose daughter is hiding back in his country with other Jewish children while he desperately earns money to pay for her passage to America.

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Hirsch, Marilyn. Joseph Who Loved the Sabbath. Viking Kestrel. 1986. AISN/ISBN: 0140506705.

For ages 4 to 8. A delightful retelling of a Talmud tale whose moral is that celebration of Shabbat is an invaluable experience. A poor man who keeps Shabbat inherits his master's wealth in a surprising way due to his honor and respect for Shabbat.

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Hirsh, Marilyn. Captain Jiri and Rabbi Jacob. Holiday House. 1976. AISN/ISBN: 0823402797.

For ages 2 and up. This story features two main characters, Rabbi Jacob who is pious and righteous and teaches his people about God and the Torah, and Captain Jiri who is brave and strong and protects the city of Prague, and about their guardian angels. One night Captain Jiri's guardian angels mistakenly visits Rabbi Jacob to tell him of a treasure for him lying under the bridge in Prague and Rabbi Jacob's guardian angel mistakenly tells Captain Jiri about a treasure waiting for him in the house of Rabbi Jacob. Each sets out in search of the treasure, but finds nothing. On the way back, they run into each other, discover the mistake and return home to find their treasures. But they find far more than just the treasures. Very young children may find the story difficult to follow, but will enjoy the book regardless.

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Hirsh, Marilyn. Could Anything Be Worse?. Holiday House. 1974. AISN/ISBN: 0823406555.

For ages 4 to 8. This is the re-telling of Yiddish tale about self-pity. The story centers around a man who is unhappy with his family life and blames all his misfortunes on his wife and children, saying "Could anything be worse?" He goes to see a rabbi who gives him a set of bizarre orders which serve to demonstrate to that man that, indeed, things could be much worse. The story is well-told and the illustrations are lovely.

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Hirsh, Marilyn. I Love Hanukkah. Holiday House. 1984. AISN/ISBN: 0823405257.

For ages 2 and up. I Love Hanukkah is the companion to I Love Passover. It, too, is told from the perspective of a child; this time the child is a boy. The boy's grandfather comes to his home to tell him the story of Chanukah and participate in the lighting of the menorah. The story of Chanukah is told on children's level and the various customs associated with Chanukah (dreidel, latkes, etc.) are all mentioned. An excellent book.

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Hirsh, Marilyn. I Love Passover. Holiday House. 1985. AISN/ISBN: 0823405494.

For ages 2 and up. I love Passover explains, in detail, how Passover is celebrated and tells the story of the Exodus from the perspective of a preschool girls who helps her mother set the table for the seder and then sits through the reading of the Haggadah. It is a wonderful book for children, filled with colorful, action-oriented illustrations. The language and level are excellent for preschoolers.

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Hirsh, Marilyn. Potato Pancakes All Around. Bonim Books. 1978. AISN/ISBN: 0827602170.

For ages 2 and up. This is a humorous story about an argument concerning the proper way to make latkes. Two grandmothers claim to have the best recipe until a peddler named Samuel comes along claiming to be able to make latkes from a crust of bread. Samuel takes advice from chickens and virtually everyone in the family, finally turning out the most delicious latkes anyone had ever eaten. An actual recipe for latkes is included on the last page.

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Hoffman, Mary and Julie Downing. First Book of Jewish Bible Stories. DK Children. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 0789485044.

For Baby to Preschool. An entertaining and educational introduction to Jewish Bible stories. In this beautifully illustrated picture book, seven stories from the bible are retold for the very young. Children can follow the stories in pictures while an adult reads aloud, and each page provides opportunities for shared discussion,A First Book of Jewish Bible Stories is an entertaining and delightful introduction to the teachings of the Bible.

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Hogrogian, Nonny. Noah's Ark. Alfred A. Knopf. 1986. AISN/ISBN: 0394881915.

For ages 3 to 8. A reverent version of the Biblical story, with a sonorous paraphrased text and illustrations full of Hogrogian's gently romanticized animals. Beginning at The Beginning, she sketches (partly in words, but mostly visually) events in the Garden of Eden and Noah's genealogy. The ark is quickly built and filled (readers never get a look inside), floats on a restless, threatening sea, and lights at last on rounded, rocky hills. In the final view, Noah is planting his vineyard in a peaceful, rainbow-topped landscape. The animals steal this show: they fly, swim, crawl, or pace everywhere, their natural postures and expressive faces in sharp contrast to the subdued, stylized human figures. Hogrogian's delicate use of line and color gives her interpretaton a warm, reassuring intimacy.

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Howland, Naomi. Latkes, Latkes, Good to Eat: A Chanukah Story. Clarion Books. 2004. AISN/ISBN: 061849295X.

For Kindergarten to Grade 2. Sadie turns over the firewood she has gathered to a poor old woman she meets in the woods and is given a magic latke pan in return for her kindness. She is told the secret words to make it work and warned, "Only you may use my gift." The girl has been left alone during Chanukah to care for her four younger brothers and she puts the pan to good use by making piles of the delicious potato pancakes. She warns the boys not to use the pan while she goes out to invite the old woman to share their bounty on the last night of Chanukah, but of course the moment she leaves, they get busy making latkes and predictable chaos ensues. Howland's gouache and colored-pencil artwork is done in a Russian folk-art style to reflect the setting.

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Howland, Naomi. Matzah Man. Clarion/Houghton Mifflin. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 0618117504.

Holiday picture book for preschool to grade 2. "Hot from the oven I jumped and ran, so clever and quick, I'm the Matzah Man!" Sprightly illustrations show all of the action in this Passover version of "The Gingerbread Boy."

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Hutton, Warwick. Moses in the Bulrushes. Margaret K. McElderry. 1986. AISN/ISBN: 0689503938.

For all ages. A beautiful retelling of the birth and rearing of Moses in Egypt. The illustrations are lovely and the story is faithful to the Bible.

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Jules, Jacqueline. Noah & the Ziz. Kar-Ben Publishing. 2005. AISN/ISBN: 1580131212.

For Kindergarten to Grade 2. With only a week left before the flood's arrival, Noah asks God for help in gathering the animals that need to board the ark. God sends a gigantic bird with a yellow body and red wings. Despite Noah's constant admonitions to proceed carefully, the Ziz unceremoniously gathers pairs of animals and plops them down near the boat. When the smaller animals hide, the Ziz finally learns that completing a project slowly and carefully can yield better results than rushing around. Kahn's illustrations are competent but unexceptional, especially considering the many renditions of Noah and the animals that cram picture-book shelves. Die-hard Ziz fans who loved The Hardest Word (Kar-Ben, 2001) might enjoy this adventure too, but others can pass.

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Jules, Jacqueline and Katherine Kahn. The Hardest Word: A Yom Kippur Story. Kar-Ben Publishing. 2001. AISN/ISBN: 1580130283.

For ages 4 to 7. The Ziz, a huge mythical bird that is clumsy but good-hearted, accidentally destroys the village children's vegetable garden. How will they decorate their sukkah? The Ziz has a talk with God, who instructs him to search the world over for the hardest word. That word turns out to be "sorry," and the Ziz finds he cannot only be forgiven, he can actually try to make up for the wrong he has done.

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Karkowsky, Nancy. Grandma's Soup. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1989. AISN/ISBN: 0930494989.

For ages 4 to 8. A young girl confronts her beloved grandmother's growing confusion due to Alzheimer's disease, as well as her own feelings about it.

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Kimmel, Eric. Days of Awe. Puffin Books. 1991. AISN/ISBN: 0140502718.

For ages 3 to 6. Three magnificent stories for the High Holy Days on the themes of Tzedakah, Tefilah and Teshuvah. Illustrated with oil paintings. Book begins with a discussion of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. This is a real winner!

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Kimmel, Eric. Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins. Holiday House. 1994. AISN/ISBN: 0823411311.

For ages 4 to 8. A winning tale about the exploits of Herschel of Ostropol who rids a synagogue of demons in a typically creative manner. This is a superb book and kids love it.

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Kimmel, Eric A. and Giora Carmi. The Chanukkah Guest. Holiday House. 1992. AISN/ISBN: 0823409783.

For ages 4 to 8. Old Bubba Brayna, 97, still makes the best potato latkes in the village. So each year at Chanukkah, her friends and the rabbi come through the snow to share her cooking and hospitality. The first to arrive this year, however, is a grumpy old bear aroused from his cave by the delicious smells of cooking. The nearly blind Bubba mistakes him for the rabbi, welcomes him in and lets him keep his fur coat on against the chill. She carries on with enough chatter for two as the bear growls through the blessing, eats a huge platter of latkes, and bestows a lick on Old Bubba in thanks. When the rabbi and the villagers arrive, they and Bubba figure out who she has been entertaining, have a good laugh, and retire to the kitchen where Bubba begins to cook all over again. Brown and rose tones predominate in Carmi's woodland and interiors. While the blocky and long-nosed people are unattractively rendered, their love of Bubba is clear. Children will enjoy this silly story of mistaken identity, and the dialogue Bubba keeps up with the bear will have them giggling happily.

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Kimmel, Eric and Jon J Muth. Gershon's Monster: A Story For The Jewish New Year. Scholastic Press. 2000. AISN/ISBN: 043910839X.

For ages 4 to 8. This presentation of a Hasidic legend has everything a reader could want: a suspenseful story, an insightful lesson and brilliant pictures that accelerate the delivery of both. Central to the plot is the custom of tashlikh, the ritual casting of sins into the water on the first day of Rosh Hashanah. Gershon the baker, "not always the best person he could be," begins to rely on this practice as a way of dealing with his mistakes: instead of apologizing and making amends, he sweeps his thoughtless deeds into the cellar every Friday and, on Rosh Hashanah, he stuffs them into a sack, drags it to the sea and tosses it in. Of course, he will learn true repentance-but not before he receives a cryptic prophecy from a sage and, much later, faces down the sea monster his sins have created. Relegating words like tashlikh to a meaty author's note (which also describes Jewish principles of t'shuvah or repentance), Kimmel (Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins) uses everyday language, letting the moral shine through his astute storytelling. The airy watercolor illustrations, loaded with period detail, transcend the particularities of the setting by virtue of Muth's (Come On, Rain!) expansive imaginative vision. He enhances the comedy in the premise by painting the sins as tiny horned imps who jeer as they face Gershon's broom (they grow a bit nastier as the story advances), yet he leaves room for a humane depiction of Gershon, more self-absorbed than wicked, and for a psychologically canny and dramatic portrayal of the monster. A memorable work, welcome at any time of year.

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Kimmelman, Leslie. The Runaway Latkes. Albert Whitman & Company. 2000. AISN/ISBN: 0807571768.

For ages 2 to 4. In a joyful Hanukkah version of "The Gingerbread Man," Kimmelman tells of three big, round latkes, crisp and brown, that jump out of the pan and roll off to see the town. Children will enjoy the mischievous cumulative tale: the young cook, Rebecca, chases the singing latkes; then the rabbi chases the latkes and Rebecca chases the rabbi, who chases the cantor, who chases the mayor, who chases the police... The ending, in which the crisp latkes jump into an applesauce river, is certainly contrived, but the singing latkes' defiant rhyme will have kids joining in. Yalowitz's energetic illustrations, with simple shapes and dancing rhythm, capture the slapstick of the chase story. And, of course, there's a recipe on the last page.

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Kolatch, Alfred J.. The Jewish Child's First Book of Why. Jonathan David Publishers. 1992. AISN/ISBN: 0824603540.

For ages 4 to 8. Brief explanations of Jewish customs and practices presented in question and answer format.

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Koralek, Jenny. Hanukkah: The Festival of Lights. Lothrop, Lee & Shepard Co. 1990. AISN/ISBN: 0688093299.

Fort ages 4 to 8. A retelling of the Chanukah story, emphasizing the triumph over oppression and violence.

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Krensky, Stephen and Greg Harlin. Hanukkah at Valley Forge. Dutton Juvenile. 2006. AISN/ISBN: 0525477381.

For ages 4 to 8. The team that created Dangerous Crossing: The Revolutionary Voyage of John Quincy Adams (2004) offers younger readers another fictionalized portrayal of an event from American history. On a cold December night at Valley Forge (1778), General Washington spies a young soldier lighting a Hanukkah candle. During a brief conversation the soldier explains the background of the holiday to Washington and the two note the similarities between the ancient conflict between the Maccabees and the Greeks and the War for Independence against England. An afterword clarifies the source of this story and provides further background about documented events. Harlin's evocative paintings are rich with period details that successfully bring the settings to life. A well-told story appropriate for both history classes and religious groups, this picture book for older children can spark discussions about the reasons for war.

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Kropf, Latifa Berry. It's Challah Time!. Kar-Ben Publishing/Lerner. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 1580130364.

Picture book for preschool. Color photographs of adorable children in a real Jewish preschool are engaging companions to a simple text that captures the fun of making challah in preparation for Shabbat.

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Kuskin, Karla. The Animals and the Ark. Atheneum. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 0689830955.

Bible story for preschool to grade 2. A poem based on the Bible story of Noah's Ark, published originally in 1957, is enhanced with splashy, rollicking illustrations, a creative book design and a typeface called "Kentucky Fried."

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Landmann, Bimba. I Am Marc Chagall: Text Loosely Inspired by "My Life" by Marc Chagall. Eerdmans Books. 2006. AISN/ISBN: 0802853056.

For Grade 2 to 4. Having illustrated Paolo Guarnieri's A Boy Named Giotto (1999) and Guido Visconti's The Genius of Leonardo (2000), Italian artist Landmann contributes text as well as pictures to a portrait of another influential painter. In a first-person narrative "loosely inspired by" Chagall's autobiography and typeset in dynamic curves, Landmann charts her subject's life from his childhood in the shtetl through his 1941 emigration to the U.S.; though poignant details lend immediacy to the story, the author never addresses whether the occasional quotation marks ("Painting . . . is my window so I can fly to another world") signify Chagall's own words or authorial interpretations. Landmann's remarkable shadowbox constructions underscore her subject's view of the fluid boundaries between the mystical and the mundane, representing literal biographical scenes interspersed with the artist's signature soaring farm animals or spiritual symbols. This will speak most powerfully to readers who have previously encountered Chagall's work-perhaps in Marc Chagall (2001), by Elisabeth Lemke and Thomas David. A time line and photo of the artist anchor the book's more interpretive aspects.

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Lepon, Shoshana. Hillel Builds A House. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1993. AISN/ISBN: 0929371429.

For ages 3 to 5. Young Hillel loves to build "houses" for every occasion; finally he finds a Jewish holiday perfectly suited to his penchant for constructing houses.

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Levin, Carol. A Rosh Hashanah Walk. Kar-Ben Publishers. 1987. AISN/ISBN: 0930494709.

A group of children take a Rosh Hashanah walk and learn about the custom of "tashlich," symbolically tossing one's sins into a stream of flowing water.

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Levine, Arthur A.. All the Lights in the Night. Tambourine Books. 1991. AISN/ISBN: 0688155928.

For ages 4 to 8. Two boys set out an a dangerous journey leaving Russia to escape to Palestine. Their journey overlaps with Chanukah and the meaning of the holiday sustains them on the way, as they light a lamp their mother gave them, hoping for a miracle of their own.

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Lewis, Shari. One-Minute Bible Stories. Doubleday. 1989. AISN/ISBN: 0385195656.

For ages 4 to 8. Retells twenty well-known Bible stories and parables in a simple, one-minute format, from "Adam and Eve," "Moses and the Ten Commandments," "David and Goliath" to "Daniel in the Lion's Den" are among the selections in this collection, retold perfectly for bedtime. Kids love this book.

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Lewis, Shari. One-Minute Jewish Stories. Doubleday. 1989. AISN/ISBN: 0440408784.

For ages 4 to 8. Twenty stories from various aspects of Jewish life--the Talmud, folklore, the Bible, history--all in a format for reading in one minute. Kids love this book.

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Little, Emily. David and the Giant. Random House. 1987. AISN/ISBN: 0833520598.

For ages 4 to 8. A nice retelling of the story of David and Goliath with big, color pictures and large-print simple words. Children who are learning to read will be able to read this book themselves.

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Lowry, Lois. Number the Stars. Laurel Leaf. 1998. AISN/ISBN: 0440227534.

For ages 4 to 8. Historical fictional account of the Danish rescue of their Jews. Kids absolutely adore this book and reread it many times.

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Manushkin, Fran. Miriam's Cup: A Passover Story. Scholastic Press. 1998. AISN/ISBN: 0590677209.

For ages 4 to 8. A rare gem of a book, which introduces the innovative ritual of Miriam's Cup at the Pesach seder in a gentle and loving manner, while at the same time retelling the story of Exodus with special attention to Miriam's role in the redemption. Manushkin skillfully draws on the biblical text and classical midrashim, weaving them together to make produce a whole that is even greater than the sum of its parts. Miriam's significant role is captured in this warm retelling of the traditional story. Includes a new composition, "Miriam's Song," by Debbie Friedman.

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Manushkin, Fran. The Matzah That Papa Brought Home. Scholastic. 1995. AISN/ISBN: 0590471473.

For ages 1 to 4. Richly illustrated with oil paintings on linen by Ned Bittinger, this book is written in the style of "The House That Jack Built" and describes lovingly a family's celebration of the Pesach seder. A truly outstanding book.

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Marzollo, Jean. Daniel in the Lion's Den. Little, Brown Young Readers. 2004. AISN/ISBN: 0316741329.

For Preschool to Grade 3. Clearly designed for reading aloud and discussion, these chatty retellings of Old Testament stories combine big, bright, thick-lined watercolor pictures with lively dramatic narratives that bring the stories to kids today. At the bottom of the pages stream tiny creatures-ants in Daniel's story, fish in Miriam's-that ask questions and make comments that will encourage listeners to talk about the issues ("Daniel is loyal to both God and the King. That's hard to do"). Daniel's story doesn't downplay the thrilling drama of facing fierce, roaring lions, but the hero is saved by an angel who works for God, and the message is that Daniel's faith gives him the strength to stand up for what he believes. Miriam's story begins with Pharaoh's terrible order to "throw all Hebrew baby boys into the river," and then retells the famous story from the viewpoint of the brave, wise, older sister. Kids will enjoy acting out the various roles and talking about the moral issues, then and now.

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Marzollo, Jean. David and Goliath. Little, Brown Young Readers. 2004. AISN/ISBN: 0316741388.

For Preschool to Grade 3. This installment in a series about biblical heroes features a childhood favorite: David, the young shepherd who slew the giant Goliath. Marzollo's lighthearted watercolor cartoons and brief, but informative narrative are presented against white backgrounds, resulting in an accessible layout that encourages independent reading. An introductory author's note mentions David's talent for creating psalms and explains that the 23rd Psalm has been interspersed throughout his adventures in stanzas printed in blue ink. Additional layers of text include conversations among the characters and a border featuring silhouettes of sheep along with their comments on the action. The field of single-volume stories about Old Testament characters that are humorous, interesting, well designed, and appropriate for a wide range of libraries is relatively fallow. This one has been carefully tended.

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Marzollo, Jean. Miriam and Her Brother Moses. Little, Brown Young Readers. 2004. AISN/ISBN: 0316741310.

For Preschool to Grade 3. Clearly designed for reading aloud and discussion, these chatty retellings of Old Testament stories combine big, bright, thick-lined watercolor pictures with lively dramatic narratives that bring the stories to kids today. At the bottom of the pages stream tiny creatures-ants in Daniel's story, fish in Miriam's-that ask questions and make comments that will encourage listeners to talk about the issues ("Daniel is loyal to both God and the King. That's hard to do"). Daniel's story doesn't downplay the thrilling drama of facing fierce, roaring lions, but the hero is saved by an angel who works for God, and the message is that Daniel's faith gives him the strength to stand up for what he believes. Miriam's story begins with Pharaoh's terrible order to "throw all Hebrew baby boys into the river," and then retells the famous story from the viewpoint of the brave, wise, older sister. Kids will enjoy acting out the various roles and talking about the moral issues, then and now.

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Medoff, Francine. The Mouse in the Matzah Factory. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1983. AISN/ISBN: 1580130488.

For ages 4 to 8. The process of making shmurah matzah is told whimsically through the eyes of a mouse spying on the proceedings, start to finish.

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Michelson, Richard. Grandpa's Gamble. Marshall Cavendish. 1999. AISN/ISBN: 0761450343.

For ages 4 to 8. A brother and sister find their elderly grandfather, who spends much of his day davening, rather boring, until he tells them the story of his life, beginning in Eastern Europe and encompassing the trials and traumas of immigration and life on the Lower East Side. With new appreciation for their grandfather, the children attain new respect for his prayer life.

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Michelson, Richard and E. B. Lewis. Across the Alley. Putnam Juvenile. 2006. AISN/ISBN: 0399239707.

For ages 4 to 8. Racial differences keep Abe and Willie apart during the day, but at night they lean out of their bedroom windows and talk together. Willie shows Abe how to pitch a slider, and he proves himself adept at the violin that Abe hands across the alley. Lewis fills out his urban setting with indistinct figures and details for a timeless feel, though text references to Sandy Koufax and Satchel Paige give the background a general fix. Abe turns out to be better at baseball than Willie, and when the lads' secret comes out, it's Willie who gives a recital at the temple, and Abe who takes the sandlot mound. Willie's father makes the point explicit: "Let people stare . . . Ignorance comes in as many colors as talent." Despite some careless detailing (the alley looks too wide for passing a violin, and Willie holds the slider incorrectly), this purposeful tale works well as a similarly themed companion to Jacqueline Woodson's Other Side (2001), also illustrated by Lewis.

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Miller, Deborah Uchill. Fins and Scales: A Kosher Tale. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1991. AISN/ISBN: 0929371267.

For ages 4 to 8. The laws of kashrut are explained in whimsical rhyme.

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Miller, Deborah Uchill. Poppy Seeds, Too. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1982. AISN/ISBN: 0930494172.

Preschool. A whimsical tale about baking challah.

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Nerlove, Miriam. Passover. Albert Whitman & Company. 1993. AISN/ISBN: 0807563617.

For Baby to Preschool. Rhyming text and illustrations depict the history of Passover and one boy's family Seder.

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Nerlove, Miriam. Ten Commandments for Jewish Children. Albert Whitman & Company. 1999. AISN/ISBN: 0807577707.

For Kindergarten to Grade 4. Delicate watercolors paint the drama of Moses' delivering the Ten Commandments to the Israelites. With a turn of the page, Nerlove's succinct history segues into a restatement of the laws, with each of the commandments receiving a double-page spread encased in a tablet shape. Beneath its Arabic and Hebraic numeral, a large, boldface statement of the commandment appears, followed by a brief and relevant explanation of its meaning. The opposite page illustrates a contemporary application of the commandment in children's lives. The laws' continuity is reaffirmed on the concluding page, where a young shepherd, representing history, and two modern-day children hold up the tablets on which the commandments appear. Sure to engage children in a discussion of the fundamental basis of their faith, this will be a popular selection for libraries serving Jewish patrons.

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Newman, Leslea. Runaway Dreidel. Henry Holt. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 0805062378.

Holiday picture book for preschool to grade 2. "Twas the first night of Chanukah and on the fifth floor, there was holiday hustling and bustling galore," begins this engaging tale of a dreidel that leads a little boy, his family and neighbors on a merry chase.

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Pearl, Sydelle. Elijah's Tears: Stories for the Jewish Holidays. Pelican Publishing Company. 2004. AISN/ISBN: 1589801784.

For ages 4 to 8. In a lively, storytelling style, Elijah's Tears offers a dramatic human context to the many Jewish holidays that are celebrated throughout the year. Five stories illuminate the many faces and mysteries of Elijah, the Jewish prophet who is known for appearing in disguise and testing the character of those in need. In "Leaves," a destitute elderly couple is heartbroken when they must sell their sacred Shabbat candlesticks for food. That evening when the husband and wife encounter an even poorer Jewish man wearing torn, shabby clothes, they offer to mend his garments. They even keep him warm in their bed while they sew (since the man owns no other clothes). Of course the mysterious man turns out to be Elijah, and he rewards the couple as he walks away by turning his footprints into leaves of gold. The ethereal figures and Jewish symbols in Rossitza Skortcheva Penney's black-and-white illustrations seem to float upon the pages, bringing even more celestial imagery and magic to the elusive Elijah. Children love folktales that allow good deeds to be rewarded, especially when the rewards come from unexpected characters.

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Pessin, Deborah. The Aleph-Bet Storybook. Jewish Publication Society. 1987. AISN/ISBN: 0827603045.

For ages 4 and up. No doubt, it's a classic, weaving the delightful tales of the Hebrew alphabet and their adventures in the Garden of Eden in with other biblical tales. These stories continue to delight young children.

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Polacco, Patricia. The Butterfly. Philomel. 2000. AISN/ISBN: 0399231706.

For ages 4 to 8. Polacco continues to mine her family history, this time telling the story of an aunt's childhood in wartime France. Young Monique doesn't comprehend the brutality of the Nazis' mission-until the day three German soldiers find her admiring a butterfly. "Joli, n'est-ce pas?" says one to Monique, then grabs the butterfly and crushes it in his fist. The butterfly, or "papillon" as it is frequently called here, becomes for Monique a symbol of the Nazis' victims. Her sympathies are quickly focused: one night Monique wakes up to discover a girl in her bedroom and learns that she and her parents, Jews, have been hiding for months in Monique's house, protected by Monique's mother. The girl, Sevrine, has been forbidden to leave the hiding place, so she and Monique meet secretly. Then a neighbor sees the two girls at the window one night, and Sevrine's family must flee. As an afterword reveals, only Sevrine survives, contacting Monique by letter-with a drawing of a butterfly. In comparison with the seeming spontaneity of the author's Pink and Say, this tale's use of the butterfly symbolism gives it a slightly constructed or manipulated feel. Even so, the imagery and the dramatic plot distill for young readers the terrors and tragic consequences of the Nazi regime and the courageousness of resisters.

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Polacco, Patricia. The Keeping Quilt. Aladdin. 2001. AISN/ISBN: 0689844476.

For Preschool to Grade 2. Polacco's first-person voice moves her narrative forward gracefully from the time when her Great-Gramma Anna came to America during the last century to the present. Richly detailed charcoal drawings fill the pages of this beautifully conceived book. Particularly striking are the faces of the Russian Jewish immigrant families who people the pages. The only color used is in the babushka and dress of Great-Gramma Anna, which become part of a brightly hued quilt. Following that quilt through four generations is the basis of this account. Customs and fashions change, but family is constant, visually linked by the "keeping quilt." Children will be fascinated by the various uses to which the quilt is put, although some of those uses make one wonder how its "like-new" shape was maintained. That stretch of the imagination is gentle, however, and does not mar the story. Readers who notice that the author and the narrator share the same name may realize that this lovely story is true; that should make it even more appealing.

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Pomerantz, Barbara. Bubby, Me, and Memories. Union of American Hebrew Congregations Press. 1983. AISN/ISBN: 0807402532.

Preschool. This book helps children confront the feeling of loss when a loved one dies. A child evokes memories of her grandmother and learns to convert her pain into a positive memory.

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Portnoy, Mindy Avra. Mommy Never Went to Hebrew School. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1989. AISN/ISBN: 0930494970.

For ages 4 to 8. Introduces and explains the phenomenon of conversion to Judaism.

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Rauchwerger, Diane Levin and Jason Wolff. Dinosaur on Shabbat. Kar-Ben Publishing. 2006. AISN/ISBN: 1580131638.

For Preschool. This book is the third in a series of rhyming books to introduce youngsters to the Jewish holidays. This time, the dino arrives to inform the children that Shabbat is near so they must prepare for the weekly observance. He spills some wine on the tablecloth, falls asleep in synagogue, and generally behaves like a mischievous toddler, while clearly enjoying every part of the rituals. The inclusion of the Havdalah is especially welcome. The colorful and large illustrations are appealing and will be helpful at storytime. This book is the best of the series and will be heavily used by teachers in Jewish preschools. However, for schools without large Jewish populations, stick with the others in the series for a taste of mainstream Jewish tradition.

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Rauchwerger, Diane Levin and Jason Wolff. Dinosaur on Passover. Kar-Ben Publishing. 2006. AISN/ISBN: 1580131611.

For Preschool to Kindergarten. The friendly, oversize creature from Dinosaur on Hanukkah (Lerner, 2005) returns to celebrate Passover with a boy and his family. In silly, rhyming text, the reptile tries to help perform the holiday rituals: removing the forbidden foods, preparing the horseradish, singing the four questions, drinking the wine, retelling the story of the Exodus, eating matzah, searching for the afikomen, and welcoming the prophet Elijah. While his size, enthusiasm, and clumsiness wreak havoc on the family Seder, by the end of the story he is curled up in a heap fast asleep. The illustrations are bright and sophisticated, complementing the cheery mood of the text. A brief endnote explains Passover, but the book will be best enjoyed by children already familiar with the holiday.

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Rauchwerger, Diane Levin and Jason Wolff. Dinosaur on Hanukkah. Kar-Ben Publishing. 2005. AISN/ISBN: 1580131433.

For Preschool to Kindergarten. This fun, almost singable, rhyming tale takes kids from gelt to dreidls and nun to shin. Youngsters will beg for this playful story again and again. What a unique way to highlight Hanukkah rituals!

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Renberg, Dalia Hardof. King Solomon and the Bee. HarperCollins. 1994. AISN/ISBN: 0060228997.

For ages 4 and up. A beautiful retelling of the tale of King Solmon and the Queen of Sheba's riddle, which may have been the creation of Hayyim Nahman Bialik. The illustrations by Ruth Heller are magnificent.

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Roseman, Kenneth. All in My Jewish Family. Union of American Hebrew Congregations Press. 1984. AISN/ISBN: 0807402664.

For ages 4 to 8. A picture-perfect photo album of Jewish children around the globe to teach Ahavat Yisrael to young children.

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Rosen, Anne. Jonathan and Norma, A Family Passover. Jewish Publication Society of America. 1980. AISN/ISBN: 0827601697.

For ages 2 and up. The narrator of this book is 10-year-old Anne who describes her family's preparations for, and celebration of, Passover. The holiday is celebrated in a "traditional" manner (i.e. changing the dishes, burning the chametz and father conducting the seder). The book is illustrated with black-and-white photographs of Anne's family.

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Rosenblum, Richard. The Old Synagogue. Jewish Publication Society. 1989. AISN/ISBN: 0827603223.

For ages 4 to 8. Tells the story of a thriving synagogue on the Lower East Side of Manhattan at the turn of the century that was later abandoned as Jews moved out of New York City, then became a factory, and as time goes by, Jews return to the neighborhood and restore the old synagogue.

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Rosenfeld, Dina. A Little Boy Named Avram. Hachai Publishing. 1989. AISN/ISBN: 0922613087.

For ages 4 to 8. The famous tale from the Midrash of how our forefather Avraham, at the early age of three, discovered the existence of the one, true God.

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Rosenfeld, Dina and Ilene Winn-Lederer. Kind Little Rivka. Hachai Publishing. 1993. AISN/ISBN: 0922613443.

This inspiring story highlights Rivka's acts of kindness to others, including ten very thirsty camels. The glowing illustrations and lilting prose tell this famous tale on a level that the young child can appreciate.

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Rosman, Steven. Deena the Damselfly. Union of American Hebrew Congregations Press. 1992. AISN/ISBN: 0807404772.

For ages 1 to 4. A damselfly nymph vows to solve the mystery of why older nymphs are disappearing when they reach maturity, but she is not prepared for her own startling transformation. A celebration of change and the life cycle.

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Ross, Lillian Hammer. Buba Leah and Her Paper Children. Jewish Publication Society. 1991. AISN/ISBN: 0827603754.

For ages 4 to 8. A grandmother's fervent desire to see her children, who have emigrated from Russia to America, is fulfilled when she receives a letter from them. Magnificent illustrations by Mary Morgan.

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Rossoff, Donald. The Perfect Prayer. Union of American Hebrew Congregations Press. 2003. AISN/ISBN: 0807408530.

For ages 4 to 6. A beautiful midrash on the word "Shema," this book provides young children three important ideas to grasp and absorb in developing their relationship with God and in learning to pray: listening, thinking and awe. The illustrations by Tammy L. Keiser will engage young children.

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Rothenberg, Joan. Yettele's Feathers. Hyperion Paperbacks for Children. 1996. AISN/ISBN: 0786811498.

For ages 4 to 8. This marvelous retelling of story which illustrates the harm and irreversibility of rumor-mongering is must reading. Rothenberg tells the story of Yettele, who sees no harm in her tales about other people and whose rabbi teachers her about lashon hara.

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Rouss, Sylvia. Sammy Spider's First Trip to Israel: a Book about the Five Senses. Kar-Ben Publishing/Lerner. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 1580130356.

Concept picture book for preschool to grade 1. When the ever-inquisitive Sammy stows away on the Shapiro family's trip to Israel, he uses his sight, smell, touch, hearing and taste to sample the remarkable country.

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Rouss, Sylvia A. and Katherine Janus Kahn. Sammy Spider's First Sukkot. Kar-Ben Publishing. 2004. AISN/ISBN: 1580130836.

For ages 3 to 8. Sammy learns about building a sukkah. Directional concepts (inside, outside, up and down, above and below) contribute to the educational value of this book that teaches about the holiday where we dwell in temporary huts.

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Rouss, Sylvia and Katherine Janus Kahn. Sammy Spider's First Purim. Kar-Ben Publishing. 2000. AISN/ISBN: 1580130623.

For Preschool to Grade 1. The Shapiro family is getting ready for Purim. Josh is making a grogger to take to the synagogue Megillah reading. Sammy Spider wants to participate, but as Sammy's mother reminds him, "Spiders don't celebrate holidays; spiders spin webs." This time Sammy's curiosity gets him stuck inside a grogger, spinning noisily among the beans. How will he escape?

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Rouss, Sylvia and Katherine Janus Kahn. Sammy Spider's First Passover. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1995. AISN/ISBN: 0929371828.

For Preschool to Grade 1. In this seasonal follow-up to Sammy Spider's First Hanukkah, the eager arachnid's mother teaches him to make a web when theirs is laid waste by a "monster"-a broom being used to ready the Shapiros' home for Passover. Though Sammy becomes fascinated by his mother's explanations of the holiday traditions, he is repeatedly told, "Spiders don't celebrate Passover. Spiders spin webs." Following instructions, Sammy completes a new web-and participates in the Shapiro family observance after all. Using cut-paper artwork made festive with cheery patterns, Kahn depicts a contemporary human family (complete with kitty), and a mother-son spider duo reminiscent of Eric Carle's creations. Though Rouss's text is lively and informative, her attempts to blend Passover basics with a rudimentary lesson on shapes (the first page terms this "a book of shapes") become somewhat jumbled and ultimately water down both aspects of the story.

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Rouss, Sylvia and Katherine Janus Kahn. Sammy Spider's First Hanukkah. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1993. AISN/ISBN: 0929371461.

For Preschool to Grade 1. Sammy watches longingly as Josh Shapiro lights another candle and receives a brightly-colored dreidel each night of Hanukkah. "Spiders don't spin dreidels, spiders spin webs!" Sammy's mother reminds him. Then on the last night, Sammy gets his own spinning surprise.

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Rouss, Sylvia and Katherine Janus Kahn. Sammy Spider's First Tu B'Shevat. Kar-Ben Publishing. 2000. AISN/ISBN: 1580130658.

For Preschool to Grade 2. A disappointing addition to the series about a little spider learning about the Jewish holidays by celebrating with his human neighbors. Sammy watches the Shapiros plant a tree in early spring. The year passes as the tree grows and Sammy learns about the seasons as it flowers in the summer and its leaves turn in the fall. Tu B'Shevat is not actually mentioned as the New Year for trees until three pages from the end, when the Shapiros celebrate with nuts and dried fruit and the planting of a sapling. It's not clear whether or not the tree at the beginning of the book was also planted on Tu B'Shevat. The paper-cut illustrations in vivid colors show the changing tree and the family caring for their yard. As a book about seasons, Tu B'Shevat is marginally effective. As an explanation and celebration of Judaism's commitment to growing things, it falls flat.

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Rouss, Sylvia and Katherine Janus Kahn. Sammy Spider's First Rosh Hashanah. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1996. AISN/ISBN: 0929371992.

For Preschool to Grade 1. Another successful collaboration between the author and illustrator of Sammy Spider's First Hanukkah (1993) and Sammy Spider's First Passover (1995, both Kar-Ben). In this story about the Jewish New Year, Rouss repeatedly uses concepts of size-large, middle-sized, and small-in the narrative. Mother Spider explains the holiday customs and symbols to curious young Sammy, including Rosh Hashanah greeting cards, challah bread, apples and honey for a sweet year, and special synagogue services. Sammy is endearing, but mischief-prone. Despite Mother Spider's insistence that he must remain a respectful observer to the festivities, Sammy manages to celebrate Rosh Hashanah in his own way. This gentle tale should appeal to youngsters of all backgrounds. The colorful collage illustrations are both instructive and cheerful.

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Sasso, Sandy Eisenberg. God's Paintbrush. Jewish Lights Publishing. 1992. AISN/ISBN: 1879045222.

For ages 3 to 8. Using illustration and simple text the child encounters God through moments in his/her personal life. Invites children and parents to discuss God and how God touches our lives and our world. Employs lovely metaphors for conceiving of God.

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Scharfstein, Sol. What Do You Do on a Jewish Holiday?. Ktav Publishing House. 1985. AISN/ISBN: 0881251704.

For ages 3 and up. A pop-up book for youngsters highlighting special features of Jewish holidays.

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Schnur, Steven. The Tie Man's Miracle. Morrow Junior Books. 1995. AISN/ISBN: 0688134637.

For ages 4 to 8. On the last night of Chanukah, Mr. Hoffman arrives to sell his neckties. Staying longer than he expects, he shares with 7-year-old Seth the story of how he lost his family in the Holocaust, as well as a story about a Chanukah miracle. This book is suitable for very young children.

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Schram, Peninnah. The Big Sukkah. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1986. AISN/ISBN: 0930494563.

For ages 4 to 8. A Jewish family in the old country don't usually host their big family because their home is so small, but one Sukkot Berel has a brilliant idea for making a large space for entertaining.

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Schrier, Jeffrey. On the Wings of Eagles: Ethiopia. Millbrook Press. 1998. AISN/ISBN: 076130004X.

For ages 4 to 8. A group of Israeli campers gather around Isaiah, an Ethiopian Jewish boy, as he tells poignant tales of his homeland, interspersed with melodies from his bamboo flute. The child shares the legends his grandmother told him of the origin of his people and the story of King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba; he tells of personal hardships and explains the years of suffering at the hands of fellow countrymen. Last of all, he recounts the struggles of his people as they attempt to flee their homes and start new lives in Israel. The unusual collage illustrations combine slightly out-of-focus photographs, line drawings, and Judaic art against the background of a hand-woven robe commonly worn in the highlands of Ethiopia. A historical afterword and a note on the art are included. This highly emotional story, based on an article by David Grossman in the New York Times on May 29, 1991, is filled with sorrow and presents the point of view of just one of the groups to suffer persecution and hardship in this African nation.

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Schwartz, Amy. Mrs. Moskowitz and the Sabbath Candlesticks. Jewish Publication Society. 1983. AISN/ISBN: 0613834291.

For ages 4 to 8. This is a wonderful story about an old woman who moves, with her cat Fred, to an apartment. She is lonely and depressed and has no desire to unpack, until her son presents her with her silver Shabbat candlesticks. The candlesticks evoke such warm memories for Mrs. Moskowitz, that she is inspired to unpack, clean the entire apartment, bake challah and invite guests for Shabbat for the sake of the candlesticks.

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Schwartz, Howard and Kristina Swarner. Before You Were Born. Roaring Brook Press. 2005. AISN/ISBN: 1596430281.

For Preschool to Grade 2. In spare, serene language, Schwartz reshapes a rabbinic legend into the answer to a familiar plea, "Tell me a story about before I was born." The quiet picture book begins: "The angel Lailah watched over you," leading your soul to Earth and teaching you "all the secrets of the world." But at the time of your birth, Lailah "put a finger to your lips, reminding you to keep everything she taught a secret. That is how you got the indentation of your upper lip." Of course, it's easy to imagine little fingers touching upper lips at the close of this gentle story. Schwartz's telling makes the soul the centerpiece of the tale. Swarner's ethereal, mixed-media illustrations illuminate the spirituality of the telling, and the uplifting idea of a guardian angel will comfort many young listeners. An author's note describes the origin of the folktale.

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Schwartz, Howard; Barbara Rush, and Stephen Fieser. The Sabbath Lion: A Jewish Folktale from Algeria. HarperTrophy. 1996. AISN/ISBN: 006443382X.

For Kindergarten to Grade 2. When his widowed mother gets news of a family fortune left to them in Egypt, Yosef volunteers to travel there to fetch it. Although she pays a caravan leader her wedding ring in exchange for his agreement not to travel during the Sabbath, the man breaks his promise, and the boy is left alone in the desert. A great lion arrives and, instead of attacking, protects him. Yosef realizes that the creature has been sent by the Sabbath Queen to take him into Egypt and home again. There is enough human detail so that readers can feel connected to the characters. The glowing paintings are dynamic and full of movement and dramatic action, whether showing the caravan, the hard-working boy running through the streets with his basket, or the roaring lion bounding through the desert with Yosef on its back. Fieser's use of perspective catches the visual interest and draws readers into the excitement of the narrative. This satisfying story is told clearly and at a good pace for reading aloud. It will also be enjoyed by independent readers and welcomed by storytellers. A note about the Jewish Sabbath is included.

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Sherman, Eileen Bluestone. The Odd Potato. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1984. AISN/ISBN: 0930494369.

For ages 2 and up. This is a warm and touching story about a young girl, Rachel, who has lost her mother and whose father is so overcome by his loss that he no longer wishes to celebrate the holidays and will not help her locate her mother's Chanukah menorah. Rachel uses a potato to hold the candles on the first night of Chanukah because her mother had told her that as a child, her family had used a potato because they had been unable to afford a menorah. The sight of the potato-menorah inspires the father to help his daughter find the menorah and celebrate the holiday with his children.

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Shulevitz, Uri. The Magician. Macmillan Publishing Company. 1973. AISN/ISBN: 0027827704.

For ages 4 to 8. This is the retelling of a tale by the Yiddish storyteller, I. L. Peretz. It is the story of the prophet who appears in the guise of a magician on the eve of Passover to conjure up a Passover feast for a poor couple. It is a lovely tale.

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Shulevitz, Uri. The Treasure. Farrar, Straus, Giroux. 1978. AISN/ISBN: 0374377405.

For ages 4 to 8. This is a retelling of an old tale (essentially the same story as Marilyn Hirsch tells in Captain Jiri and Rabbi Jacob) about a poor man who dreams there is a treasure under the bridge in the capital city and goes searching for it, only to find that the real treasure is in his own home and he never knew it. Shulevitz, the famous illustrator, has adorned this telling of the tale with magnificent paintings which children will surely enjoy. Aside from the "moral of the story" the story also teaches one appropriate ways to celebrate one's good fortune.

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Siegel, Bruce H. and Shelly O. Haas. The Magic of Kol Nidre. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1998. AISN/ISBN: 1580130038.

For ages 4 to 8. Kol Nidre, the opening prayer of the Yom Kippur eve service, is chanted three times, first softly, then a little louder, then very loudly. In this book, the narrator explores the reasons for the repetition and searches for the "magic" of Kol Nidre. Three times he gives possible explanations-once when he is a boy with his grandfather, once as a new father holding his baby daughter, and finally as an old man with his grandson. Each time, the narrator has a different insight into the prayer. In the final scene, he discovers that the magic of Kol Nidre is the way that it brings all types of Jews together once a year. Each double-page spread features a realistic watercolor that depicts the scene as well as a stained-glass column (also watercolor) that reflects the ideas of the text. This is an excellent discussion-starter for religious schools.

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Silverman, Erica and Matthew Trueman. When the Chickens Went on Strike. Puffin. 2005. AISN/ISBN: 0142402796.

For ages 4 to 8. A story about the custom of kapores, told by a man looking back on his childhood in a 19th-century Russian village. As described here, the ritual involves holding a chicken over someone's head while reciting a prayer in order to rid the person of the year's misdeeds. Triggering a commotion in the prayer house, the boy is sent outside and observes the chicken population leaving town. They're fed up with being vehicles for a New Year's clean slate. The boy pleads with the revolutionaries, saying he needs them to make Kapores so that his father will be proud of him. A hen asks, "Boychick-for this, do you really need a chicken?" In this skillful adaptation of a story by Sholom Aleichem, Silverman's addition of a young narrator lends immediacy and empathy, and streamlines the story with no loss of flavor and point. Though the tale is accessible and enjoyable, a discussion of Kapores beyond what is offered here will increase children's understanding and appreciation of the story. The comic alliteration and in-your-beak attitude of the cheeky chickens, reinforced by the handsomely humorous paintings, are appealing. Executed in layers of ink, pencil, gouache, acrylic, and oil, the illustrations are a wonderful combination of modern and folk art. The fiercely funny fowl, with long necks, whitish bodies, and rich red coxcombs, squawk right off the page. Good New Year's-let alone Rosh Hashanah-stories are in short supply. This is one to crow about.

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Silverman, Erica and Susan Gaber. Raisel's Riddle. Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 2003. AISN/ISBN: 0374461996.

For Kindergarten to Grade 3. In this Jewish holiday variant of the Cinderella story, Raisel, the granddaughter of a learned scholar, uses her wits to win the rabbi's son. After Raisel's grandfather dies, the orphaned girl moves from her Polish village to a large city and goes to work in the kitchen of a rabbi. On the night of the Purim ball, she feeds an old woman who gives her three wishes for her kindness, thus allowing Raisel to attend the ball and tell the rabbi's son a riddle that wins his heart. Using elements from the classic tale and ideas from the Talmud, Silverman crafts a story that teaches the importance of learning while retaining the romance of the fairy tale. The quotes from the Talmud blend in well with the rest of the narration and the themes reappear in the art. Gaber's pictures are uneven, with Raisel looking different from page to page, but at their best, the composition is lovely and the realistic paintings with their smears of bright colors beautifully reflect the emotions of the text. The artist plays with point of view, setting her illustrations at all different angles and distances, some of which are more effective than others. However, as a whole, the book works, and while not a necessary purchase, it will be a welcome addition where more folklore with a Jewish focus is needed.

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Silverman, Maida. The Glass Menorah and Other Stories for Jewish Holidays. Simon & Schuster. 1992. AISN/ISBN: 0027826821.

For ages 4 to 8. A pleasant, beginning-chapter book of quiet stories for Jewish holidays (surprisingly, none for Yom Kippur) that feature the Berg family and their neighbor, Mr. Yomtov. Although a glossary is provided, not all of the terms are included, so the audience for the book is limited to children familiar with the holidays and their traditions. Informative but not didactic, the book offers a much-needed perspective on an average Jewish family's year, as measured by the cadence of their holidays. Illustrated.

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Simon, Norma. Simhat Torah. United Synagogue of America. 1960. AISN/ISBN: 0838107044.

For ages 2 to 4. This volume is suitable for very young children. It begins with a lovely description of children making flags for Simchat Torah. Note: this book stresses that only men and children participate in the synagogue celebration of Simchat Torah.

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Simon, Norma. The Purim Party. United Synagogue of America. 1959. AISN/ISBN: 0838107079.

For ages 2 to 4. This is a simple book about children who dress up for, and participate in, a Purim pageant and party. The illustrations are colorful and simple and the language is very simple.

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Simon, Norma. Tu Bishvat. United Synagogue of America. 1961. AISN/ISBN: 0838107095.

For ages 2 to 4. It explains the connection between fruits and seeds and planting seeds and growing plants. The illustrations are not exciting but they are adequate.

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Singer, Isaac Bashevis. A Tale of Three Wishes. Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 1975. AISN/ISBN: 0374373701.

For ages 4 and up. This is a classic I.B. Singer tale of three children who wish to be as wise as Solomon, as learned as Moses and as beautiful and brave as Esther, but who learn that such attributes are acquired by hard work and perseverance, not by wishing. Excellent illustrations.

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Singer, Isaac Bashevis. Why Noah Chose the Dove. Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 1973. AISN/ISBN: 0374384207.

For ages 4 and up. This is the classic midrash on what virtue is the most praiseworthy. All the animals aboard the ark tell Noah why they merit being saved, and in so doing, belittle the others. Only the dove refuses to participate, modestly remaining silent. As a reward, Noah chooses the Dove to go forth as his messenger to find land after the food. It is a tale of bragging and modesty, whose message is clear to young children.

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Spero, Moshe Halevi and Elisheva Gaash. Saying Goodbye to Grandma. Pitspopany Press. 1997. AISN/ISBN: 0943706467.

For ages 4 to 8. The story will serve as a catalyst to help the child explore his/her new, almost overwhelming emotions about death together with the parent. Includes a special introduction to help parents and teachers deal with the child's traumatic experience.

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Spier, Peter. The Book of Jonah. Doubleday & Company. 1985. AISN/ISBN: 0385193343.

For ages 4 to 8. A true-to-the-text retelling of the story with many quotes from an English translation.

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Stampler, Ann Redisch and Jacqueline M. Cohen. Shlemazel and the Remarkable Spoon of Pohost. Clarion Books. 2006. AISN/ISBN: 0618369597.

For Preschool to Grade 2. The Yiddish idiom is just right in this shtetl tale, which Stampler heard from her grandmother, who emigrated to the U.S. from Eastern Europe. "Work-smurk" protests sleepy Shlemazel, who insists he is not lazy but unlucky. After he is tricked into getting out and searching for his luck, he becomes a mensch, finding a better life through hard work and love. The irreverent, down-to-earth idiom takes away heavy messages, and the swirling, folk-art watercolors show the community connections as people hire Shlemazel to dig the soil, grind flour, and make challah with sweet Chaya Massel, who eventually marries him. Who needs luck? He's perfectly happy without it. With its wry twist on the trickster tradition, this story, by the creators of Something for Nothing (2003), will be great for storytelling alongside other tales from Eastern European Jewish folklore such as Isaac Bashevis Singer's classic tales, Simms Taback's Joseph Had a Little Overcoat (1999), and Nina Jaffe's The Way Meat Loves Salt (1998).

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Steinberg, Sari and Sari Bchiri. And Then There Were Dinosaurs. Pitspopany Press. 1993. AISN/ISBN: 094370619X.

For Kindergarten to Grade 2. In this Creation fable, God makes all dinosaurs happy herbivores. After 150 million years, however, a sudden outbreak of possessiveness leads to rampant greed and selfishness. Dinosaurs stop sharing, and some become carnivores. God decides to end their reign (via earthquakes and volcanoes) and try again-with a smarter creature able to reflect on problems instead of reacting violently. The message is clear-and so is the image of God as a punitive Enforcer. The illustrations feature colored clay figures posed against painted backdrops or in clay landscapes. Static and amateurish, they lack even the "camp" appeal of Claymation. This book is no competition for the many stylish and wisdom-filled children's books available today.

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Suhl, Yuri. Simon Boom Gives a Wedding. Four Winds Press. 1972. AISN/ISBN: 0590072099.

For ages 3 and up. This is an amusing story about a foolish man who buys "only the best" of everything, regardless of how inappropriate or ill-fitting it is. The result of this policy is that he ends up serving only well-water at his daughter's wedding party. The illustrations are excellent.

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Swartz, Nancy Sohn and Melanie W. Hall. In Our Image: God's First Creatures. Jewish Lights Publishing. 1998. AISN/ISBN: 1879045990.

For ages 4 to 7. Students of the Bible have long pondered who, exactly, God meant when in Genesis he used the plural in speaking about humankind in "our" image. Swartz answers that question in a unique way. God was speaking to "ALL," including the animals, that he had created. Then, each of the animals comes up with one quality that it wants the humans to have: bravery, from the tiger; gentleness, from the lamb; speed, from the cheetah; slowness, from the snail; and so on. In the end, humans receive all their qualities from what has come before them, thus making them a true part of the larger natural world. The text is readily accessible to preschoolers, who will enjoy hearing all the animals declare and offer their special qualities; children will also instinctively receive Swartz's message about the world's interconnectedness. Extending and elaborating on the text are Hall's pictures, which are particularly nice. Inventive watercolors, dappled with sunlight and cloistered by moonlight, capture the feeling of life that is the essence of the story. One interesting note: When, near the book's conclusion, God says humankind will have dominion over the animals, the creatures are afraid. God assures them that "woman and man shall be partners with me to care for you and all the world." Even preschoolers can join in a stimulating discussion about whether humankind has lived up to its obligation.

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Syme, Deborah Shayne. Partners. Union of American Hebrew Congregations Press. 1990. AISN/ISBN: 0807404357.

For ages 4 to 8. What does it mean to be "God's partner"? This story tells of two children who discover how they can be God's partners.

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Techner, David and Judith Hirt-Manheimer. A Candle for Grandpa. Union of American Hebrew Congregations Press. 1993. AISN/ISBN: 0807405078.

For ages 4 to 8. Aptly subtitled "A Guide to the Jewish Funeral for Children and Parents," this book explains Jewish customs pertaining to burial and shiva and helps parents answer their children's challenging questions about God, life and death.

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Topek, Susan Remeck and Sally Springer. A Costume for Noah: A Purim Story. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1995. AISN/ISBN: 0929371909.

For Preschool to Kindergarten. While he awaits the birth of a sibling, four-year-old Noah, who has appeared in Topek's previous holiday books, prepares for Purim with his preschool classmates. Against the backdrop of this familiar setting, the author introduces traditional terms and customs associated with the festival. She writes in a gentle, warm, and easy to understand style. Noah's indecision about a costume and his anxiety about the new arrival are resolved in a believable conclusion. This title should please readers in Jewish schools. However, the lack of an explanation of the festival or a comment on Noah's school environment limit the use of this charming story. Colored line drawings are sweet without being cloying. They reflect the diversity of heritage among a new generation of American Jewry.

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Topek, Susan Remeck and Sally Springer. A Taste for Noah. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1993. AISN/ISBN: 0929371402.

For ages 4 to 8. As his nursery school class prepares for Passover, Noah is reluctant to take part in making and tasting charoset, the Passover food made of apples and nuts.

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Topek, Susan Remeck and Sally Springer. A Turn for Noah: A Hanukkah Story. Kar-Ben Copies. 1992. AISN/ISBN: 0929371372.

For ages 4 to 8. Hanukkah is supposed to be fun, especially in nursery school, but things had been going wrong for Noah all week. He couldn't spin the dreidel, he spilled the blue paint, and he hadn't had a turn lighting the menorah. The holiday would soon be over.

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Van Handel, Esther. A Children's Treasury of Holiday Tales. Mesorah Publications, Limited. 1992. AISN/ISBN: 0899064175.

For ages 4 to 8. Esther Van Handel's stories are just right. In this lovely book, her tales highlight each holiday with a mixture of reality and fantasy that make your youngster get right into the story. A joy all year round. Illustrated by Connie Frank.

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Vineberg, Ethel. Grandmother Came from Dworitz: A Jewish Story. Tundra Books. 1969. AISN/ISBN: 0912766883.

For ages 4 to 8. An account of Jewish life in Eastern Europe in the 19th century and the wave of emigration around the turn of the century. The author also describes the life and adjustments made by immigrants to the U.S. and Canada.

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Vorst, Rochel Groner. The Sukkah that I Built. Hachai Publishing. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 1929628072.

For Preschool to Grade 2. In this variation of "The House That Jack Built," a young boy describes the sukkah that he assembled. Successive verses describe the ladder, hammer, nails, boards, poles, and branches he uses to create this outdoor eating booth, which will be used by his family during the Jewish harvest festival of Sukkot. Colorful, humorous illustrations also show the child's family and leave little doubt that they all helped with the construction. Vorst's simple, rhyming text is just the right length for wiggly young religious-school audiences, and it offers both enough basic vocabulary and information to help young children understand the topic. A glossary and more details about this festival are useful additions to a fine choice for religious school collections and for other libraries with a demand for books on Sukkot.

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Waldman, Neil. The Never-Ending Greenness. HarperCollins Publishers. 1997. AISN/ISBN: 0688144799.

For ages 4 to 8. This well written story retells simply a complicated tale of displacement and rebuilding. The narrator begins, "I was born many years ago in a city called Vilna. I remember my papa's bakery, all filled with wonderful smells....But mostly I remember the trees." The double-page illustration is colorful and lively, depicting a busy city scene. With a turn of the page, the mood changes abruptly; the landscape is colorless and gray, and foreboding Nazi soldiers dominate the space: "What remained was a world of stone and mud, crisscrossed by brown-puddled streets where skinny, puffy-eyed people drifted like ghosts." The color returns to the illustrations after the boy's family makes a harrowing escape and emigrates to "eretz Yisrael" (the land of Israel). From that background the story develops, describing the replanting of a barren and empty land through the painstaking and optimistic work of its new settlers. As the story draws to its conclusion, the narrator, now an old man, comments, "Each year, the forest spreads, covering our country with a carpet of green." Waldman's vibrant acrylic double-page illustrations, with their simple form and puintillistic style, convey that change admirably. A historical note provides a concise factual background. An uplifting story and a tribute to the people who were committed to "the greening" of Israel.

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Weil, Lisl. Esther. Atheneum. 1980. AISN/ISBN: 0689307616.

For ages 4 to 8. This book tells the tale of the Book of Esther. It is a simple retelling of the story and easy to follow. Note: there is an illustration of Haman hung.

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Williams, Marcia. Jonah and the Whale. Random House. 1989. AISN/ISBN: 0394923456.

For ages 4 and up. A simple retelling of the story with engaging, whimsical illustrations.

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Wilson, Anne. Noah's Ark. Chronicle Books. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 0811835634.

Bible story for preschool to grade 1. Written in a spare style and illustrated with flat, bright colors and simple lines, this faithful retelling of the biblical account of the flood celebrates obedience to God and the beauty of the world God made.

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Zalben, Jane Breskin. Beni's Little Library: A Jewish Holiday Boxed Set. Henry Holt. 1991. AISN/ISBN: 0805018794.

For ages 2 to 6. Four colorful books, "Beni's First Chanukah," "Goldie's Purim," "Happy Passover," "Rosie and Leo and Blossom's Sukah," present the story of the holiday, their prominent symbols and the significance.

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Zalben, Jane Breskin. Let There Be Light: Poems and Prayers for Repairing the World. Dutton Juvenile. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 0525469958.

For ages 4 to 8. Zalben offers a distinctive collection of short, inspirational writings gathered from many cultures and religious traditions. Selections include passages from the Bible, the Qu'ran, and the writings of Lao-Tzu, the Buddha, Native American peoples, St. Francis of Assisi, the Shona of Zimbabwe, the Dalai Lama, and Mahatma Gandhi. Each piece is illustrated with one or two pages of artwork-sometimes delicate, precise paintings, sometimes bold paper-cut collage, sometimes a combination of the two. Even the art incorporates materials from around the world, such as Egyptian papyrus and Japanese rice paper, which Zalben has cut, torn, painted, and digitally manipulated to make illustrations that can differ in style from one another, but suit the writings they illustrate. A simple collage flower shown growing from seed to withering plant in one picture illustrates the words of Ecclesiastes 3:1-9; in another an Asian wall hanging complements a saying of the Buddha. The positive message of this anthology of poems, quotations, and prayers, with thoughtful selections and creative illustrations, shines through like the sun that warms the world's children on the jacket illustration.

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Zalben, Jane Breskin. Pearl's Passover: A Family Celebration Through Stories, Recipes, Crafts, and Songs. Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers. 2002. AISN/ISBN: 0689814879.

Holiday story and activity book for preschool to grade 2. A family of sheep romps through Passover in this collection of stories, recipes, crafts, songs and games that focuses on the origins of the festival and its observance at the Seder.

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Zeldis, Yona. God Sent a Rainbow and Other Bible Stories. Jewish Publication Society. 1997. AISN/ISBN: 0827605919.

For ages 4 to 8. Fourteen Bible stories are retold for children and illustrated with unique folk art which adds beauty to the narrative. The selections range from Genesis to Exodus and include Creation, Noah's Ark and The Baby Moses.

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Zusman, Evelyn. The Passover Parrot. Kar-Ben Publishing. 1983. AISN/ISBN: 1580130240.

For ages 4 to 8. Leba's parrot was the only one who was willing to listen to her learn the Four Questions. But when Passover arrives, the parrot participates in the seder a little more than anyone wants: he stills the afikomen. Leba has a clever plan to retrieve the afikomen.

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Zwerin, Raymond A. and Audrey Friedman Marcus. A Purim Album. Union of American Hebrew Congregations Press. 1981. AISN/ISBN: 0807401544.

For ages 2 and up. This is a wonderful book which not only tells children the story of Purim, but teaches them the moral lessons of the tale on their own level. The format of the book is a "photo album" of children performing a Purim play.

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Zwerin, Raymond A. and Audrey Friedman Marcus. Like a Maccabee. Union of American Hebrew Congregations Press. 1991. AISN/ISBN: 0807404454.

For ages 4 to 8. This book invites children to imagine themselves among the band of Jews who revolting against King Antiochus in the 2nd century BCE. and to emulate the values learned from our history.

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Zwerin, Raymond A. and Audrey Friedman Marcus. Shabbat Can Be. Union of American Hebrew Congregations Press. 1979. AISN/ISBN: 0807400238.

For ages 2 and up. This is one of the loveliest children's books around. It discusses Shabbat as a day of possibilities for physical and spiritual renewal and fulfillment. It does not dictate rituals but rather presents possibilities. It touches on all the central Jewish themes: family, prayer, rest, music as well as the belief that Shabbat is a "taste of the world-to-come." This book allows for each family's personal observance of Shabbat. It validates everyone and opens the door to greater observance of Shabbat without limiting that observance to rituals.





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