Page 139 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 54

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photo-essay (picture-storybook illustrated with photographs).
The area of greatest growth is seen in holiday books. The num­
ber of books published about the holidays has grown from a mere
7 from 1970-1975, to 23 from 1975-1980, to 43 from 1980-1985,
to 93 from 1985-1991, with 1991 having 19 holiday books. Be­
tween 1970 and 1991, at least 166 holiday books were published—
most of them picture-books or picture-storybooks. There is no
longer a lack of “faction” books that use a story to teach the facts
of the holiday and even their quality has improved. For a while,
though, it was difficult to find a good story that was set during the
holiday and used one or two elements from it. The good news is
that now we have many. Two of the best were published by Holi­
day House in 1990 and 1989. Eric KimmePs and Giora Carmi’s
The Chanukah Guest
, appears to be an original tale on an old theme,
and Kimmel’s and Trina Schart Hyman’s
Hersheland theHanukkah
Goblins
, combines the tale of Hershel, the
luftmensch
from Os-
tropol, with elements of a well-known ghost story from general
children’s literature. Even the babies can have their holiday books.
Kar-Ben is among those that have produced holiday board books
for toddlers and picture-storybooks for ages four to eight.
BIBLE TALES
Bible stories once
were
Jewish children’s literature. Although
they no longer form the core of the annual Jewish children’s bibli­
ography, they are still very popular, appearing either in collection
or as picture-storybooks. Noah and Jonah stories are most plenti­
ful; tales about Moses, Joseph, Adam and Eve, the Tower of Babel,
and Genesis, Daniel and Esther, follow. During 1970-1991, there
were 99 Bible stories published. These include 4 collections for
ages twelve-up, one of which is
Miriam's Well: Stories about Women
in the Bible
by Alice Bach and J. Cheryl Exum (Delacorte, 1991).
The only other Bible stories about women are those in Marlee Al­
ex’s
Outstanding Women ofthe Bible Series
(Eerdman’s, 1987). Also,
Lynne Reid Banks once wrote a young adult novel about women in
the Bible, called
Sarah andAfter,
that was very good, if quite imag-
131
Fifty Years ofJewish Children5sBooks