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Saturday, September 18, 2021

Jewish Stories Are Everywhere — Especially in Books

It’s my joy to review for this publication many current books — especially memoirs, biographies, and novels — but occasionally when there are none left on the pile to review, I have the opportunity...

Novel Imagines German-Jewish Relationships at Close of 19th Century

The book cover gives a false impression of the contents of All Things That Deserve to Perish.  While there are sexual situations that contribute to the outcome of the story, the major theme of this book...
United Autosports, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

More Than a Raceway: Novel Presents a Jewish Side of Watkins Glen

The Finger Lakes region of upstate New York is known for Watkins Glen International, a race car venue that permits ordinary citizens to take three laps around the track in their personal cars for...

Author Tells How to Recognize and Treat Addiction

In a recent reading of the Scott Silverman book The Opioid Epidemic, this reader found the title a bit misleading. Rather than a book about the opioid epidemic the book was more a primer on...

Belonging: The Story of the Jews, 1492-1900. By Simon Schama

“SOMETIME, somewhere, between Africa and Hindustan, lay a river so Jewish it observed the Sabbath.” “Belonging”, the second volume of Simon Schama’s story of the Jews, begins with this pious waterway, and continues with...

A Survivor’s Trek Through Europe and the U.S.

In this memoir, nonagenarian Michael G. Kesler tells how as a teenager, he escaped both forced service in the Soviet Army and the Nazi invasion of his Polish home town by hopping trains with...

Jewish Family’s Anguish after Converting as Catholics during Nazi Era

Erika Hecht’s mother had herself and Erika converted from Judaism to Catholicism to protect them from discovery by the Nazis or their Hungarian allies, the Arrow Cross. Erika was enrolled in Catholic school, where...

Acceptance of Differences Is Theme of Children’s Book

Out of the mouths of….. seven-year-olds comes the impetus for Craig Pomranz’s new children’s book, Made by Raffi. This is Pomranz’s first foray into publishing, but the singer/actor/dancer is no stranger to the limelight. The grandson of...
photo by Dorothea Shefer-Vanson of book cover

Biography of David Sealtiel Tells Struggles of Pre-State Israel

This small book, subtitled (in German) “I want to be a compatriot of the Jewish people,” describes the life of the man who rebelled against the bourgeois and orthodox way of life of his...

Children’s Literature: Bible Stories Retold

The stories from Genesis and Exodus are familiar to anyone who has read the Bible or attended Sunday school, but in making the stories more interesting for children, author Shalev, not unlike the midrash writers of old, has invented some...