Page 260 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 54

Basic HTML Version

cept their grandparents placement in nursing facilities. But it is a bit unrealistic.
P e n n , M a lk a .
The Hanukkah Ghosts.
NY: Holiday, 1995. 88 p. (8-12)
Susan, a half-Jewish girl spending a lonely vacation week in her elderly
aunt’s forbidding English manor house on the moors, keeps meeting mysteri­
ous children at midnight in the Hanukkah candles’ flickering light and also two
people who currendy live in the house, but are about 50 years older than in
these midnight meetings. An eerie page-turner with a great ending. Susan is
able to correct a terrible injustice that had occurred 50 years prior, and so takes
part in the miracle of the season. Buy for sure.
* P e r l , L i l a
M a r i a n L a z a n .
Four Perfect Pebbles: A Holocaust
illus. photos. NY: Greenwillow, 1996. 130 p. (10-14)
Perl weaves the history of the Holocaust with survivor Marion Blumenthal
Lazan’s memories of what happened to her family. The writing is direct and
devastating. The truth is in what’s said and in what’s left out. Describes Krys-
tallnacht, life as inmates of Westerbork in Holland, and the horror of Bergen-
Belsen in Germany with its crematoriums and their final aimless ride in a train
across Germany as the Germans approached defeat. The four perfect pebbles
are the talisman that Marion holds on to in the belief that it will safeguard her
family, which unbelievably stayed together.
P o d w a l , M a r k .
Golem: A Giant Made of Mud.
illus. Podwal. NY:
Greenwillow, 1995. 32 p. (5-9)
An “impure” retelling begins with a greedy emperor who wants to turn iron
into gold and then it switches to a rabbi who creates the golem to protect the
Jews from persecution, but later goes berserk. The Chagall-like illustrations
are distortedly intriguing.
P r o s e , F r a n c i n e .
Dybbuk: A Story Made in Heaven,
illus. Podwal,
Mark. NY: Greenwillow, 1996. 24 p. (5-8)
A young couple, matched in heaven by the angels 40 days before birth are
forbidden to marry because Chonon, the beloved of Leah, is too poor. Leah is
affianced to a rich old man, but at their wedding a dybbuk (Chonon) overtakes
her and the wedding is cancelled and Chonon called to marry Leah. But, you
ask, isn’t Chonon, the dybbuk dead? No t in this story that received rave re­
views from those who didn’t know better. It’s fun, charming, the illustrations
are great, but. . . .
P u s h k e r , G l o r i a T e l e s .
A Belfer Bar Mitzvah.
first illus. Judith
Hierstein. Louisiana: Pelican, 1995. unp. (7-10)
Describes a nine-year-old’s excitement at her cousin Paul’s Bar Mitzvah and
explains the ceremony clearly and in detail forJews and non-Jews. The illustra­
tions are less exaggerated, which is an improvement, and there are no undigni­
fied cutesies, as in Pushker’s previous books. A good addition to this genre.
* R o c h m a n , H a z e l
D a r l e n e
Z .
M c C a m p b e l l .
Witness: Stories of the Holocaust,
illus. one comic strip. NY: Orchard