Monday, May 23, 2016

Advanced Style: Older & Wiser

By Amy Klein for Hadassah Magazine
When Ari Seth Cohen moved to New York more than eight years ago, he was missing his grandmother Bluma, his “best friend” who had recently passed away. So in tribute to her, he started documenting the style and stories of the city’s most inspiring older people. And a phenomenon was born.

To wit: first the blog, then the book, then the documentary Advanced Style, showing photos of the flashy, the classy, the colorful and the eclectic “elderhood” around the world.

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Monday, May 16, 2016

A fresh crop of Jewish books for spring

By Victor Wishna for JTA

Spring — when nature itself seems to reawaken — is a time for renewal. Indeed, Jewish tradition teaches that Passover is a holiday of rebirth, a second new year. So it’s probably a good idea to spruce up your bookshelf (or e-reader or audiobook app), no? Here are nine Jewishy suggestions to rejuvenate your reading.

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Monday, May 9, 2016

95 Year-Old NYC Appeals Lawyer Releases New Books in Mystery Series


New York City Sleuth Emily Lewis Investigates Murders While Seeking A Divorce In Reno, Going Backstage On Broadway, Visiting The Intrepid Museum, And Stepping Inside A Brooklyn Mikvah Bath.

Former appeals lawyer Sally Weinraub is celebrating her 95th birthday in grand fashion. She’s releasing the first four books in her new mystery series all at once. Books Six Weeks Time, Murder On The Intrepid, Death Of A Goddess, and Murder At The Mikvah mark the debut of British-born sleuth Emily Lewis, an appeals lawyer in New York.

“Why should anyone in this day and age have to wait to see what mystery Emily solves next?” Weinraub said. “At 95, publishing all the books at once works for me!” Her strategy fits right in to today’s on-demand, binge entertainment trend.

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Monday, May 2, 2016

Sami Rohr Prize 2016

Jewish Book Council is pleased to announce the recipient of the 2016 Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature:

The Archive Thief: The Man Who Salvaged French Jewish History in the Wake of the Holocaust by Lisa Moses Leff

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Monday, April 25, 2016

But You Did Not Come Back: A Memoir

By Raphael Magarik for The Jewish Daily Forward   

But You Did Not Come Back: A Memoir By Marceline Loridan-Ivens
Translated by Sandra Smith

In 2015, more than 7,000 French Jews immigrated to Israel. A Jewish agency think tank began planning for 120,000 more, roughly a quarter of all the Jews in France. Jewish schoolchildren increasingly cannot attend public French schools safely. Under these circumstances, a new French Holocaust memoir cannot help but be a political manifesto. And indeed, Jewish, leftist filmmaker Marceline Loridan-Ivens includes some thoughts on France, anti-Semitism, Zionism and the like in her Holocaust memoir, “But You Did Not Come Back.”

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Monday, April 18, 2016

The Evolution of a Maverick Reform Rabbi

John Moscowitz started out as a New Left activist, then turned to Judaism, then broke with the orthodoxies of his own liberal movement. In a new book, he takes stock.

Martin Krossel for Mosaic

It’s no easy chore to find Reform rabbis who deviate from their movement’s liberal orientation on matters ranging from the revelation at Sinai to the Israel-Palestinian “peace process,” and who are unafraid to say so in public. One of them is John Moscowitz, who throughout his adult life has been out of step with friends and colleagues politically, intellectually, and theologically. His fascinating journey, from radical left-wing activist to outspoken spiritual leader of a 6,000-member congregation in Toronto, Canada, is on display in a recently published collection of his sermons, speeches, and writings entitled The Evolution of an Unorthodox Rabbi.

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Monday, April 11, 2016

Seder Stories: Passover Thoughts on Food, Family, and Freedom

By Nancy Rips

Review by Maron L. Waxman for Jewish Book Council

Everybody has a story, especially a family story. At a senior center in Omaha, Nancy Rips began collecting seder stories—personal, funny, instructive, significant, embarrassing. Over the years her collection grew, and in Seder Stories she records the childhood memories of 101 Jews, familiar figures, friends, and the well-known anonymous. Grouped in chapters that speak to various aspects of the seder, the stories are entertaining in their own right; judiciously dropped into a seder, a sprinkling can provide an allowable leaven of laughter or poignancy. A glossary provides translations of Yiddish and Hebrew words and phrases.

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