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Following Grandma’s WWII Path Leads Author to Self-Discovery

When Sergiusz Scheller left his home in Poland to move to America to be with his bride, Rachael Cerrotti, his mother Danuta told him, “We share the same sky.  We look at the same...

STEM, STEAM, and Now STREAM Children’s Books

Educators long have worked with STEM curricula — emphasizing Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.  When artists declared such curricula were too limiting, the notion of STEAM was introduced.  Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math. Now,...
Benzion Netanyahu, his wife, Tzila, and two of his sons, Jonathan and Benjamin, left

A Jewish Academia Novel Set in 1960 Still Resonates

I started reading academia novels in the 1960s with Edward Albee’s tempestuous boozy Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf, then the jocular Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis, a hoot, a romp, filled with  junior faculty insecurities. My radar sought...

Former Israel ‘Hawk’ Tells of His Transformation to a ‘Dove’

It’s a well-worn political observation that “it took a Nixon to go to China,” meaning because President Richard M. Nixon was identified as a staunch conservative, he was trusted to go to mainland China...

Book Review: ‘The Age of Exodus’

Although not a fan of swashbuckling, derring-do literature, I was tempted to buy this book because its subject-matter combined ancient archaeology and the struggle to establish the modern State of Israel. An irresistible combination...

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...

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...

A Jewish Odyssey from Ethiopia to Israel and Back

From Africa to Zion: The Shepherd Boy Who Became Israel’s First Ethiopian-born Journalist; a memoir by Danny Adeno Abebe; Yedioth Ahronoth, Chemed Books; © 2021, translated from Hebrew; ISBN 9789652-012869; 404 pages. This is a...

Children’s Literature: ‘The Rabbi and the Painter’

The Rabbi and the Painter; story by Shoshana Weiss; illustrations by Jennifer Kirkham; Kalaniot Books, 2021; ISBN 9780998-852782; 28 pages plus historical notes. This children’s book imagines a fictional friendship between the Mannerist painter Tintoretto and...

Tovah Feldshuh’s True-Life Role as a Daughter

Lilyville: Mother, Daughter, and Other Roles I’ve Played  by Tovah Feldshuh; Hatchette Books; 2021; ISBN:9780306-924026; $29. It’s hard to believe that Lilyville is a first book given its accessibility and universal appeal. This memoir of four-time Tony,...