Page 92 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 49

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JEWISH BOOK ANNUAL
the stories in a charm ing way. The book is enhanced by the
lavish illustrations o f Jael Jo rdan . It is a 1990 Alfred A. Knopf
large form a t publication. (96 p.)
T h e re are many holiday books, bu t in
Eight Tales for Eight
Nights: Stories fo r Chanukah,
published by Jason Aronson in 1990
(166 p.), the spotlight is on the story element. T h e co-authors,
Peninnah Schram and Steven M. Rosman, o ffer eleven tales:
the actual story o f Chanukah , 8 stories incorporating various
themes and traditions o f the holiday, and 2 personal/family sto­
ries. Folklore motifs are appa ren t th roughou t the 6 original sto­
ries. A seventh story is adap ted from an IFA folktale and an
eighth is adap ted from a tale by Nissan Mindel. T h e re is also
an append ix on how to retrieve personal and family stories and
a section containing Ashkinazic and Sephardic holiday music.
The creative paper-cu t illustrations, a traditional Jewish folk art,
are by renowned artist Tsirl Waletzky.
The Diamond Tree: Jewish Tales from Around the World
consists
o f 15 Jewish folktales for children selected and retold by How­
ard Schwartz and Barbara Rush (HarperCollins Publishers,
1991, 100 p.). T h e tales have been drawn from the Midrash,
from medieval Jewish folklore, and from the Israel Folktale A r­
chives, and include East European and Middle Eastern tales.
T h e re are 10 color illustrations by the well-known artist Uri
Shulevitz.
It may well be tha t folktale books remain longer on ou r
shelves than do books that deal with “matter-of-fact” issues. O u r
oral and written literature focuses on the timely and timeless
concerns o f life. Continued in terest and research in the Jewish
oral tradition promise to keep this trad ition vital and vibrant.
The stories tha t have been told from one generation to ano the r
will continue to serve as links between the generations and will
help keep o u r values, traditions and sense o f peoplehood alive.