Hadassah Magazine's Guide to Jewish Literature - November/December 2017
A selection of books to entice any reader. Everything from novels to nonfiction, memoirs to mysteries, cookbooks to kids’ books.
Helen left New York on a California-bound train in 1936 seeking a change of scene. But when she arrives, she finds a world of bookies, mobsters, and the pro-Nazi movement that she must infiltrate on behalf of the Anti-Defamation League. Anita Mishook’s meticulously researched, brilliantly written, well-reviewed, Depression-era novel portrays the under-told history of the German American Bund, the Silver Shirts, and their efforts to undermine democracy while building a summer retreat for Hitler on the Pacific shore.
Amazon.com $14.40 paper or $9.99 Kindle. www.barnesandnoble.com $14.59 paper.
Follow Adina and Jack in this dramatic, fictional love story with special appeal for those Jewish communities whose religious and cultural worlds collided as they moved from cities to suburbs during the 1960s. “An often engaging Romeo-and-Juliet story with an unexpected mature and thoughtful ending.”–Kirkus Indie Review.
Available on Amazon.com, including Kindle, and BarnesandNoble.com.
The instant New York Times bestseller, Refugee, is a timely and powerful novel that follows three children seeking refuge—Josef, from Nazi Germany; Isabel, from 1990s Cuba; and Mahmoud, from present-day Syria. Although each child is separated by continents and decades, shocking connections tie their stories together in the end. This “stunning, poignant novel” (Entertainment Weekly) is about courage, survival, and the quest for home.
Available from Scholastic Inc. in hardcover, e-book, and audiobook.
Inge Auerbacher’s childhood was as happy and peaceful as that of any other German child—until 1942. By then, the Nazis were in power, and because Inge’s family was Jewish, she and her parents were sent to a concentration camp in Czechoslovakia. The Auerbachers defied death for three years, and were finally freed in 1945. In her own words, Inge Auerbacher tells her family’s harrowing story—and how they carried with them ever after the strength and courage of will that allowed them to survive.
To order, visit penguinrandomhouse.com.
Rose Rabinowitz has spent her life burdened by a deep sense of guilt, and a history of failed relationships. Then Abe Stolper appears—a shy, introverted scientist with his own dark secret. As Rose and Abe come to trust one another, they begin a painful journey toward love and redemption.
Available on Amazon.com.
Wired for God is the candid and compelling memoir of Dani Antman’s spiritual journey from mystical Judaism through Kundalini Science and back again. With a spiritual practice aimed at the redirection and completion of a challenging Kundalini process related to her Jewish past, Dani experiences a triumphant return to Judaism. For all seekers looking to make spiritual progress and find their own unique spiritual path.
Christian missionaries calling themselves messianic “Jews,” Jews ingratiating themselves to Evangelical Christians for their support of Israel, the overuse of the term “Judeo-Christian” and the increasing use of Jewish rituals in Christian churches are among the factors that blur the lines between Judaism and Christianity. Judaism and Christianity: A Contrast explains, from a Jewish perspective, the irreconcilable differences and mutually exclusive beliefs of the two faiths.
Available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble in hardcover, paperback and in all e-book formats.
In 1905, when Rebecca leaves her shtetl in Ukraine to join Samuel in Milwaukee and Ingrid leaves Norway to become the Picture Bride of Lars, a farmer in North Dakota, by mistake officials at Ellis Island send them to each other’s destination. Lost in alien cultures, they struggle to return to their fiancés. But the love that blossoms between Rebecca and Lars threatens their plans.
A multicultural family incorporates Indian food into their Hanukkah celebration—while toddler Sadie climbs everywhere. But will her climbing skills save the Hanukkah party? “A delightful culinary adventure”—Kirkus. “Respect and appreciation for the blended cultures”—Jewish Book Council.
Hardcover, 40 pages, $16.99. Available where books are sold, including independent bookstores; nationally via Indiebound.com.
Filled with love, resilience, courage, and humor, Surviving Remnant is an intimate portrayal of the struggle for life among new refugees from the Holocaust in 1950s America. How does a young girl search for a father and husband for her single mother, a Hungarian survivor, and come of age in a new land? If you loved Sidonia’s Thread, you will treasure the sequel, Surviving Remnant.
“He sheds light on everyday life in ways that celebrate a thriving Jewish community.”—Rabbi Tamar Grimm. “His stories connect on a level where most people live—in the day-to-day, where small decisions, good and bad, reveal a person’s quality, morality, and, finally, what or who is loved.”—Professor David McFarland.
76 stories, 372 pages. $20 at Amazon.com.
Jake Lyons’ tragic loss of family during the Blitz leads him to join the RAF to fight for Britain. As sole heir to his uncle’s estate, he becomes the recipient of a chest of diamonds, not mentioned in his will. Left with doubts, that the cache was sent to him in error or spoils of a heist, he sets out to determine to whom it belongs. From London to New York, South Africa to Israel, the twists, turns, and surprises her readers have learned to expect uniquely define the profound personal story of a true Diamond in the Rough.
The book is available on Amazon.com and iUniverse.com in e-book, paperback, and hardcover.
In 1946, a 22-year-old Jewish woman pens a memoir while on a ship to the US, detailing her harrowing escape from Nazi Germany. Her affluent family’s dangerous flight to Japan across Siberia is a story of unlikely friendships and places of refuge.
Available for purchase at your favorite book vendor. AU Press: paperback, $26.95, 978-1-77199-061-5.
A charming, touching story about a girl who becomes part of a minyan when she turns “that special age.” There is nothing preachy about how Lori Kline presents the story. The text is enhanced by Susan Simon’s vibrant, colorful and inviting illustrations. This picture book is a great gift for those who appreciate the beauty of Jewish rituals and tradition.
www.sociosights.com. For bulk orders: itascabooks.com.
Israel’s heroic biblical women spring to life in Debra Band’s vibrant Arise! Arise! Deborah, Ruth and Hannah, illuminated paintings and compelling commentary of the biblical stories of women who stood up to lead at crucial moments and sculpt the eternal character of Israel. Inspiring Bat Mitzvah gift! Dedicated copies available.
Energize your Friday nights, enchant your family’s hearts, souls and modern minds with Debra Band’s new Kabbalat Shabbat: the Grand Unification! Vibrant illuminated paintings of every home and synagogue prayer, custom and song. Poetic translations by Raymond P. Scheindlin and comprehensive new scholarly commentary. Matching bencher available. Exquisite, inspirational gift!
In Tel Aviv, under daily missile attack during Operation Desert Storm, when every heart seeks comfort and companionship, complex affairs and a world of crisis bring conflicts of love, betrayal and unforeseen commitments. A young charismatic nurse lives and works by her own code of honor in a strict Orthodox hospital—until one day a married doctor emerges with a campaign of seduction that could endanger her livelihood, reputation and self-respect. “…a powerful first-hand look at what everyday life was like in Israel when most Americans were watching Shock and Awe on the 24-hour news channel.”—Mike Ball, Erma Bombeck award-winning author.
Two cultures collide in a timeless tale of faith, passion and love. Daniella, a Conservative Jewess, wants to become a cantor. Adam, a Hasidic jeweler, questions his isolated lifestyle. Benny, a diner owner, tries to help the two become a couple. Amid a slew of tough choices and opposition, all three confront family, community and prejudice for the sake of love. People of all faiths, cultures and backgrounds will enjoy this modern-day Romeo and Juliet love story.
The Daily Diner, along with M. Marmer Verhoeff’s novel, When Fishes Love Doves, is available at Amazon.com, Amazon Kindle and BarnesandNoble.com.
“Magnificent… a novel of epic proportions that tells of three strong women, a nun, a rabbi and a minister as they face the struggle for legitimacy and recognition…”—Rabbi Stephen L. Fuchs. A Catholic Sister wants to become a priest. One of the first women rabbis and one of the first women Presbyterian pastors must choose between their lovers and their careers. When the three attend a dinner to receive an award, each recalls fifty years of her life and journey to forge a path-breaking career and find her voice, and each makes the decision that will forever change her life.
A book club favorite and finalist for the National Jewish Book Award, this acclaimed memoir of growing up a Turkish Jew in a fortune-telling, belly-dancing family illustrates Sephardic life, the foods, fear of the Evil Eye and the author’s struggle to walk again after polio. Booklist calls it “A joy to read…a profoundly moving memoir.” Now in paperback with Discussion Questions!
This gem-of-a-book provides potentially life-saving information about optimizing cancer survival and overall health with diet. Included: why eating plants is crucial to fighting, and preventing, cancer; step-by-step guidance on adopting plant-centered eating habits—in and out of the home; practical recipes; helpful resources. The author, a late-stage cancer survivor, writes in a personal, easy-to-read manner. Her message will inspire and empower cancer survivors and families.
124 pages. Available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle.