Hannah dreads going to her family's Passover Seder—she's tired of hearing her relatives talk about the past. But when she opens the front door to symbolically welcome the prophet Elijah, she's transported to a Polish village in the year 1942. Why is she there, and who is this "Chaya" that everyone seems to think she is? Just as she begins to unravel the mystery, Nazi soldiers come to take everyone in the village away. And only Hannah knows the unspeakable horrors that await. A critically acclaimed novel from multi-award-winning author Jane Yolen.
Winner of the National Jewish Book Award
"[Yolen] adds much to understanding the effects of the Holocaust, which will reverberate throughout history, today and tomorrow." —SLJ, starred review
"Readers will come away with a sense of tragic history that both disturbs and compels." —Booklist
An American Bookseller "Pick of the Lists"
"America," the girl repeated. "What will you do there?"
I was silent for a little time.
"I will do everything there," I answered.
Rifka knows nothing about America when she flees from Russia with her family in 1919. But she dreams that in the new country she will at last be safe from the Russian soldiers and their harsh treatment of the Jews. Throughout her journey, Rifka carries with her a cherished volume of poetry by Alexander Pushkin. In it, she records her observations and experiences in the form of letters to Tovah, the beloved cousin she has left behind.
Strong-hearted and determined, Rifka must endure a great deal: humiliating examinations by doctors and soldiers, deadly typhus, separation from all she has ever known and loved, murderous storms at sea, detainment on Ellis Island--and is if this is not enough, the loss of her glorious golden hair.
Based on a true story from the author's family, Letters from Rifka presents a real-life heroine with an uncommon courage and unsinkable spirit.
Estrella is a Marrano: During the time of the Spanish Inquisition, she is one of a community of Spanish Jews living double lives as Catholics. And she is living in a house of secrets, raised by a family who practices underground the ancient and mysterious way of wisdom known as kabbalah. When Estrella discovers her family's true identity--and her family's secrets are made public--she confronts a world she's never imagined, where new love burns and where friendship ends in flame and ash, where trust is all but vanquished and betrayal has tragic and bitter consequences.
Winner of numerous "best book" citations and infused with the rich context of history and faith, Incantation is a transcendent journey of discovery and loss, rebirth and remembrance that Newbery Award-winning author Lois Lowry described as "Magical and spellbinding...Painful and exquisitely beautiful."
Miami Beach has so many things to worry and wonder about, Sally is in for one unforgettable winter!
Benjamin is about to lose a whole lot more than good toilet paper. If he doesn't make tons of money fast by selling candy bars and winning contests—like the Royal-T Bathroom Tissue slogan contest—his family will get kicked out of their apartment. Even with his flair for clever slogans, will Benjamin be able to win a cash prize large enough to keep a promise he made to his dad before he died? Or will he lose everything that matters to him?
Praise for Death by Toilet Paper
"Readers can't help but enjoy this heartening book about hanging in there."--Kirkus Reviews
"Ben is a character kids will root for."--Publisher's Weekly
"Would make a fine classroom readaloud."--The Bulletin
From the Hardcover edition.
Ella, Henny, Sarah, Charlotte, and Gertie are back!
Life is never dull for the loving, Jewish, all-of-a-kind family on New York’s Lower East Side in the early 1900s. Stand-alone chapters make this a perfect read-aloud, as the story follows the five sisters who are very busy, especially now that baby Charlie is growing so quickly. Ella gets a big role in the Purim play, Henny gets into trouble at school and runs away, Sarah gets her ears pierced, Charlotte has a scary kitchen accident, and Gertie finally is old enough to have a book of her own. And the girls befriend a young boy named Guido whose mother is very ill.
Generations of readers have loved following the exploits of these very recognizable girls. This title, although written later, picks up right where the first, All-of-a-Kind Family, ended.
An act of defiance.
A statement of hope.
A crime punishable by death.
Making a birthday card in Auschwitz was all of those things. But that is what Zlatka did, in 1944, for her best friend, Fania. She stole and bartered for paper and scissors, secretly creating an origami heart. Then she passed it to every girl at the work tables to sign with their hopes and wishes for happiness, for love, and most of all—for freedom.
Fania knew what that heart meant, for herself and all the other girls. And she kept it hidden, through the bitter days in the camp and through the death marches. She kept it always.
This novel is based on the true story of Fania and Zlatka, the story of the bond that helped them both to hope for the best in the face of the worst. Their heart is one of the few objects created in Auschwitz, and can be seen today in the Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre.
A richly detailed and nuanced book, one of both humor and depth, understanding and horror, this story explains a complex world that remains an echo of its past, and illuminates the conflict between yesterday's traditions and today's reality.
With the cross-cultural charm of Bend It Like Beckham, this delightful debut novel is a classic coming-of-age story and young romance with universal appeal.
Praise for My Basmati Bat Mitzvah
"In my opinion, My Basmati Bat Mitzvah shows that everyone is different in their own way and some get the advantage of being culturally diverse. I rate the book 5 stars!"
—Shivani Desai, age 13
"The latest spunky heroine of South Asian–Jewish heritage to grace middle-grade fiction, Tara Feinstein, 12, charms readers from the get-go in this strong, funny debut."
—Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"Tara’s inquisitiveness, openness, and determination to chart her own path stand out in this warm story of family, faith and the ways people are unique yet intertwined."
"With a conversational and authentic tween voice, Tara invites readers into her world as she explores the larger issues of faith, compassion, and tradition while confronting the awkwardness that is puberty—her questions regarding God are poignant and relatable while her opinions on training bras are simply spot-on..."
—The Bulletin of The Center for Children’s Books
"Authors often mention but then shrink from exploring in depth their characters’ mixed religious heritage; it’s a sensitive subject that demands close scrutiny. Freedman bucks that trend, avoiding didacticism by portraying broader issues through Tara’s personality and unique circumstances. As Tara learns in this skillful exploration, an important source of her special strengths—questioning spirit, empathy and strong ethical compass—is her mixed heritage."
—The Jewish Daily Forward
"This story will have resonance for many children of many faiths at the cusp of religious adulthood."
"As she makes her way through these challenges, she learns a great deal about friendship, family, and heritage. Freedman handles the ethnic and religious diversity of Tara’s family and friends with a light touch, but doesn’t shrink from exploring some of the complexities of a dual heritage."
—School Library Journal
"This book’s well-drawn characters bring two colorful cultures to vibrant life. The contemporary urban setting, cast with touches of humor and romance, frame mature ideas of peer and self-acceptance in a familiar, lighthearted world. Middle grade girls will readily befriend Tara and pick up new cultural understanding."
—Library Media Connection
It's the night before the eight-day celebration of Hanukkah begins, and everyone is excited! Each evening, the family gathers to light the candles and share holiday traditions such as playing dreidel, eating latkes, and exchanging gifts. The seventeenth title in Natasha Wing's bestselling series, The Night Before Hanukkah captures all the joy and love in one of the most wonderful times of the year!
When the world goes dark and her mind explodes within her, Miriam's future is shattered. In ancient Israel such seizures make her unclean. If anyone finds out about them, she will be an outcast.
Only Abraham -- the son of Hannah, her caretaker -- shares her secret. Abraham, too, is afflicted -- a perfect mind in an imperfect body -- and to the villagers he is an idiot.
To Miriam he is a savior....
Lola is more than a little disappointed, and she looks to her bubbe for advice and comfort. But on opening night, the curtain rises, and she finds herself smack in the middle of an exasperating turn of events.
In this fun and heartfelt chapter book, can Lola give Squirrel #2 her own special stamp and make it a play to remember?
From the Hardcover edition.
Then I woke up and remembered.
Papa and I had arrived at Ellis Island. For three years we had been living on the Lower East Side of New York. Papa worked in a sweatshop earning money to bring over the rest of the family, while I worked after school. I dreamed of the day our family would be together again.
And tomorrow, it would finally happen. Would they love America like I did or would they say "a curse on Columbus" because the New World brought them nothing but trouble and hard work?
Eve Tal was born in the United States, but lives on Kibbutz Hatzor in Israel. Cursing Columbus is her second young adult historical novel and is the sequel to Double Crossing, which is based on her grandfather's emigration story from the Ukraine.
After her father loses his job, Sonia Nadhamuni, half Indian and half Jewish American, finds herself yanked out of private school and thrown into the unfamiliar world of public education. For the first time, Sonia's mixed heritage makes her classmates ask questions—questions Sonia doesn't always know how to answer—as she navigates between a group of popular girls who want her to try out for the cheerleading squad and other students who aren't part of the "in" crowd.
At the same time that Sonia is trying to make new friends, she's dealing with what it means to have an out-of-work parent—it's hard for her family to adjust to their changed circumstances. And then, one day, Sonia's father goes missing. Now Sonia wonders if she ever really knew him. As she begins to look for answers, she must decide what really matters and who her true friends are—and whether her two halves, no matter how different, can make her a whole.
a holiday tradition for interfaith families
The December Dilemma looms large for interfaith families. This book strives to honor family and fun. It provides a way for parents and children to embrace their own holiday and have a deep appreciation for the other holidays celebrated by their extended and blended family.
- Rabbi Michael Shields, Davidson, North Carolina
The God of Christmas and the God of Chanukkah are the same. God reveals Himself to many groups of people and each seeks a fitting way to respond to Him. We are all created in Gods image and give honor and Glory to Him by loving and respecting each other.
- Fr. Dan Nolan, CSV, Catholic Chaplain, Chicago, Illinois
I love that no one is left out! - Sloane, age 11
This book makes both holidays even more fun. - Jonathan-Bradley, age 7
Finally!! A book that brings Jewish and Christian kids together! - Gussie, age 8
Yay...a holiday book that includes ME! - Alice, age 9
My friends want to be like me and do both Chanukkah and Christmas. - Jeffrey, age 10
Were going to read it every single year - Jillian Beth, age 6
A Jewish spirit. A scrappy demon who glows as if spray-painted by moonlight.
The dybbuk is revealed to be the ghost of a twelve-year-old boy named Avrom Amos, a victim of the Nazis during World War II. In a plucky scheme to seek revenge, he commandeers The Great Freddie's stage act and entraps the entertainer in the postwar ashes of Germany. Behind the footlights, the dybbuk lights up the terrible fate of a million and a half Jewish children, including Avrom himself.
What tricks does the dybbuk have up his ghostly sleeve? Prepare to be astonished. . . .
I am a mix of two traditions.
From Daddy Christmas and Hanukkah Mama.
How lucky am I?
Holiday time at Sadie's house means golden gelt sparkling under the Christmas tree, candy canes hanging on eight menorah branches, voices uniting to sing carols about Macabees and the manger, and latkes on the mantel awaiting Santa's arrival.
Selina Alko's joyous celebration of blended families will make the perfect holiday gift for the many Americans who celebrate both Christmas and Hanukkah.
It is 1943 in Nazi-occupied Denmark. Anett and her parents are hiding a Jewish woman and her son, Carl, in their cellar until a fishing boat can take them across the sound to neutral Sweden. The soldiers patrolling their street are growing suspicious, so Carl and his mama must make their way to the harbor despite a cloudy sky with no moon to guide them. Worried about their safety, Anett devises a clever and unusual plan for their safe passage to the harbor.
Based on a true story.
In that hellish place, there was another Kanada. It was the ironic name given to the storehouse at Auschwitz where the possessions — clothing and jewelry — stripped from the victims were deposited, and where Jutka was put to work.
The war may have ended, but it did not end the suffering of many of the inmates of concentration camps. Many had no homes to go to, and if they did, they were not welcome. Hundreds
went back to Poland and were murdered. Famished, diseased, and homeless, they lived in the hopelessness of camps, wondering if they could ever find a home in the world. Some went to Israel, but for Jutka there was only one dream left her — the dream of a country full of hope, where she would no longer have to live in fear.
Eva Wiseman’s powerful novel describes the war and its long, difficult aftermath with compassion and tenderness.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Being an Inquisitor is no job for a nice Jewish boy. But when the police learn that Sacha Kessler can see witches, he’s apprenticed to the department’s star Inquisitor, Maximillian Wolf. Their mission is to stop magical crime. And New York at the beginning of the twentieth century is a magical melting pot where each ethnic group has its own brand of homegrown witchcraft, and magical gangs rule the streets from Hell’s Kitchen to Chinatown.
Soon Sacha has teamed up with fellow apprentice Lily Astral, daughter of one of the city’s richest Wall Street Wizards—and a spoiled snob, if you ask Sacha. Their first case is to find out who’s trying to kill Thomas Edison.
Edison has invented a mechanical witch detector that could unleash the worst witch-hunt in American history. Every magician in town has a motive to kill him. But as the investigation unfolds, all the clues lead back to the Lower East Side. And Sacha soon realizes that his own family could be accused of murder!
Darren hasn’t had an easy year.
There was his parents’ divorce, which just so happened to come at the same time his older brother Nate left for college and his longtime best friend moved away. And of course there’s the whole not having a girlfriend thing.
Then one Thursday morning Darren’s dad shows up at his house at 6 a.m. with a glazed chocolate doughnut and a revelation that turns Darren’s world inside out. In full freakout mode, Darren, in a totally un-Darren move, ditches school to go visit Nate. Barely twenty-four hours at Nate’s school makes everything much better or much worse—Darren has no idea. It might somehow be both. All he knows for sure is that in addition to trying to figure out why none of his family members are who they used to be, he’s now obsessed with a strangely amazing girl who showed up out of nowhere but then totally disappeared.
Told entirely in lists, Todd Hasak-Lowy’s debut YA novel perfectly captures why having anything to do with anyone, including yourself, is:
3. ridiculously complicated
4. possibly, hopefully the right thing after all.
Spinning with joy at the wonder of you!
Here Is the World is a joyous celebration of the Jewish holidays throughout the year for young children. Beginning with the weekly observance of Shabbat, readers join a family through the holidays and the corresponding seasons. From sounding the shofar on Rosh Hashanah to lighting the menorah for Chanukah to rattling a grogger for Purim, and on through the Jewish year, the joy and significance of each holiday beautifully come to life.In addition to the narrative text, there is a description of each holiday in the back matter along with an easy craft or recipe.
Praise for Here is the World
"Both lovely and eminently useful."
"Illustrating the change of seasons, Gal’s charcoal and digital collage images effervesce with cheery colors, moving from the radiant gold, yellows, and reds of autumn to the greens and blues of spring—with a stop in snowy winter for Chanukah, of course."
History Stepping Stones now feature updated content that emphasizes Common Core and today’s renewed interest in nonfiction. Perfect for home, school, and library bookshelves!
Run for the Hills tells this story with historical accuracy. Anna and her family struggle with fear, separation, death, hatred, and forgiveness. The family horse becomes Anna's best friend as her mother grows distant. The family leans heavily on their Christian faith. Especially distressing is the hatred they feel toward the "rich folks on the mountain", whom many blame for the disaster. They feel the rich folks had no regard for the safety of their families.
It is an exciting human-interest adventure. All ages enjoy it, especially young readers, twelve to fourteen. Those who love horses are drawn to it. Some prospective uses: entertainment, historical education, school curriculums, libraries; museums; tourist centers, elevation of Christian ethics; a discussion starter on topics such as responsibility to others, how our actions affect others, forgiveness, and the issue of dam safety.
Elva Knavel, a native of the Johnstown area, says she wanted to write this story for years. She now makes her home in Florida with her pastor husband and family, but returns every summer to the Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania and the "salt of the earth" people she loves.
Dave Horowitz’s playful rhyming tale, its illustrations packed with comic asides, will have readers giggling out loud and looking for opportunities to practice their Yiddish—with help from the handy glossary at the end of the book.