SoOlder Kids / Young Adult -- General Fiction
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Older Kids / Young Adult:
General Fiction


I have linked the books to Amazon.com, but I have linked certain items to other booksellers when Amazon didn't carry them.

As a warning, I have put up pictures of the book covers to give you somewhat an idea of the style of each book (I know, I know. "Don't judge a book by its cover") so the pages may load slowly.



There's No Such Thing As a Chanukah Bush, Sandy Goldstein



1998 Emmy Award Winning Video
Also Available
Christmas is the worst time of year for Robin. That's because she has to face the same question again: Does her being Jewish really mean she can't have a Christmas tree and be a part of all the excitement around her? It doesn't help at all that her classmate, Sandy Goldstein, has a Chanukah bush; it only makes her non-Jewish friends ask Robin more questions. But help does come-from unexpected sources: Robin's grandfather and a Christmas party!

Description from Publisher

Here a truly poignant conflict that minority parents must often tackle -- maintaining one's group identity and integrity in the face of tremendous pressures -- is trivialized. What could have been an important book for the many children who face such pressures in our society turns out to be a let down.

Description from Children's Bulletin

Jewish Humor Stories for Kids
Here are four original stories that have three age-old ingredients guaranteed to make you laugh: "Breakfast Without Bagels" tells the story of a middle America family who go to far out lengths to keep their Jewishness intact. "Nothing To Sneeze At" finds our hero spreading germs and laughter as he literally blows people away with his humongous sneezes. "The Three Wishes of Nathan the Wise" is the tale of a young boy with an attitude problem, his gym shoe and a Jewish genie from the old, old country. "Hannah’s Succah" shows, what a determined young girl and her mischievous puppy can do if they their hands and paws together.

Starring Sally J. Freedman as Herself

by Judy Blume
A Jewish girl from New Jersey spends a year growing up in Florida just after the close of World War II. Her daydreams mix with her increasingly shrewd observations about herself, her friends, and family
Description from The Reader's Catalog

Who do you tell when you're certain that Hitler is alive, retired, and living in Miami Beach? It's 1947, and Sally J. Freedman full of wild ideas. She's got her eye on handsome Peter Hornstein, the Latin lover of her dreams...on hold Mr. Zavodsky, who looks suspiciously like Hitler in disguise...and on her father, who Sally misses terribly. There are so many things to worry and wonder about. But whatever happens, Sally's school year in Miami Beach will certainly be exciting--and absolutely unforgetable.

Description from Publisher

The Christmas Menorahs : How a Town Fought Hate
Based on a true incident that occurred in Billings, Montana, this story begins when a rock is thrown through a boy's bedroom window in which a menorah is displayed. The boy, Isaac, is frightened and unsure whether he wants to put the menorah back. His parents call the police, and his mother goes on television and to a meeting to talk about hate crimes in the community. Inspired by stories of the Danish people helping their Jewish neighbors during World War II, the people of Billings put menorahs in their windows to take a stand against bigotry. When a schoolmate supports Isaac, he takes his own stand by returning the menorah to its place. Although the plot seems a little stilted at times, Cohn deals with the issues in a way children can readily understand. Throughout the book, realistic, soft-focus oil paintings dramatize the action and personalize the characters. A fine book for parents and teachers who want to discuss prejudice and hate crimes with their children, with background information provided in the introduction.

Description from Booklist
The Koufax Dilemma
The Koufax Dilemma
Eleven-year-old Danny is looking forward to pitching his first baseball game of the season. He is angry and disappointed when his mother reminds him that the game conflicts with the Passover seder. She expects him to celebrate with the family. Danny's usually warm relationship with his mother and coach, and his mixed feelings for his mother's boyfriend and his dad's new family are portrayed in a believable way. His struggles with faith, family and team loyalty make this novel an appealing account of family caring and compromise, as well as a satisfying sports story.

Description from Children's Literature

Jewish Sci-Fi Stories for Kids
Here are six far out tales unlike anything you have ever read before. They will take you to destinations you have never dreamed of, to meet monsters and mavens your parents forgot to warn you about

Description from Publisher

How I Saved Hanukkah
Marla Feinstein, the only Jewish kid in her fourth-grade class, feels like an outsider--especially as everyone gears up for Christmas, including her best friend, Lucy. To make matters worse, her father is out of town, and her mother doesn't take Hanukkah seriously. The best she can hope for is a few candles, a couple of unwrapped gifts, and a dreidel that doesn't spin. Once Marla decides to find out what Hanukkah is really about, however, things turn around. Starting with a genuine dreidel game, her family begins to catch the spirit. Her mom even makes her first latkes (potato pancakes), which leads to a big Hanukkah party for all of their friends--Jewish and non-Jewish alike. A gem of a story, in which a child's persistent curiosity is the means for introducing readers to the background and traditions that make up a delightful holiday. Illustrations by Diane deGroat add to the fun.

Description from Booklist

Sing Time
'The cantor likes Elvis! But what does Elvis have to do with learning Torah? And does he really think that listening to rock music will make me like Sunday school?'

The protagonist of this new juvenile novel finds the answer to these and other questions in the unlikeliest of places-the office of a cantor. An unnamed ten-year-old boy is wandering the halls of a strange synagogue while his father registers him and his brother for Hebrew school. Suddenly he finds himself in the messiest-and most intriguing-office he has ever seen. And somewhere within this chaos is Cantor Eli Jacobs.

Description from Publisher

The Adventures of Ali Baba Bernstein
Eight-year-old David Bernstein thinks his life would be much more exciting if he changed his name, so he does--to Ali Baba Bernstein. Life does seem more exciting as Ali Baba, but David begins to appreciate his uniqueness after he invites all the David Bernsteins in the Manhattan phone book to his birthday party.

Hurray for Ali Baba Bernstein
A sequel to The Adventures of Ali Baba Bernstein featuring fourth-grader David Bernstein, who prefers to go by the more exotic name, Ali Baba. In these episodic stories, Ali Baba solves the mystery of some missing circus tickets, and questions a man he believes to be Santa Claus on why Jewish children don't receive any gifts from him.

Once I Was a Plum Tree
Increasingly aware of the differences between her family, who are nonobservant Jews, and their Catholic neighbors, 10-year-old Gerry Flam begins to investigate her heritage.

Description from Publisher

Brookville C.C.
Getting Started (Vol 1)
Chassi, Leah, Devori, Elisheva, and Yocheved were bursting with energy and filled with fun. Join them in a host of exciting, hilarious, fun-filled adventures.

Description from Publisher

The Fools of Chelm and Their History
A satirical look at the residents of Chelm, the legendary Yiddish town of fools.

Description from Publisher

It is always a pleasure to read something by I.B.Singer. Although this short tale is recommended for ages 9-12, it is certainly also addressed to any age beyond. The tale is a delightful satire of society´s political and ideological systems, in may aspects a short version of George Orwell´s "Animal Farm."

Description from Amazon.com customer review

Zlateh the Goat And Other Stories
Chelm is a village of fools. The most famous fools - the oldest and the greatest - are the seven Elders. But there are lesser fools too: a silly irresponsible bridgegroom; four sisters who mix up their feet in bed one night; a young man who images himself dead. Here are seven magical folktales, spun by a master storyteller, that speaks of fools, devils, shlemiels, and even heroes - like Zlateh the goat.

Description from Publisher
What Happened to Heather Hopkowitz?
What Happened to Heather Hopkowitz?
Fourteen-year-old Heather Hopkowitz can't imagine life without bacon, cheeseburgers, or bowling on Friday nights. But that's what happens when she spends an entire month as the guest of an Orthodox Jewish family while her parents are away on vacation. As Heather begins to appreciate the traditional rituals, she considers becoming observant. What will her friends think? What will her parents think?

description by publisher

Savta Simcha and the Cinnamon Tree
The Jewish "Mary Poppins"

The further adventures of Savta Simcha, Uncle Nechemya, and the orphan boy Ezra who comes to live with them in their little stone house in Jerusalem.

Description from Publisher

Savta Simcha and the Seven Splendid Gifts
The Jewish "Mary Poppins"

Join in Savta Simcha's unusual shopping spree in the Land of Israel!

Description from Publisher

Savta Simcha, Uncle Nechemya, and the Very Strange Stone in the Garden
The Jewish "Mary Poppins"

A stone with unusual powers leads Savta Simcha and friends on an adventure-filled journey.

Description from Publisher

Savta Simcha is a very special woman. She is old, but she acts very young. She does very unusual things which people don't normally do (unless they are like Savta Simcha!) It's a book about a Jewish woman and Jewish children in Israel, but I think that that children anywhere would enjoy it. I did. A lot! In fact, I liked all the Savta Simcha books.

Description from Amazon.com Customer Review
The Violin Players
The Violin Players
When her family moves from New York to Missouri, Melissa, a nonpracticing Jew who's never thought much about religion, encounters strong antiSemitism and does not tell anyone she is Jewish. When another Jewish student at school is attacked, Melissa stands up for him and decides to learn more about her religion.

from Horn Book

The Many Adventures of Minnie
Minnie grows up in the only Jewish home in a small Texas town. Because Minnie is the younest of four children, she is determined to do things better than her older siblings. In her struggle to excel, she frequently finds herself in trouble. But when she finally achieves, success is all the sweeter.

Description from Publisher

Unfinished Dreams :
A Novel
Mr. Carr is a principal any student would love, joking on the intercom, coming to school once a year in his pajamas, and lending support to all. An aspiring violinist, sixth-grader Jason has received great encouragement from Mr. Carr, so when the principal falls ill and students make cracks about his being a "fairy," Jason feels both puzzled and distressed. As Jason's everyday life unfolds (violin lessons, a family celebration, Hebrew school), he gradually learns more about AIDS and about tolerance. Jason is a likable character, but his first-person narrative articulates every little feeling and thought Zalben wants to convey, and Mr. Carr is far too good to be true. The book's strength lies in Zalben's refreshingly ordinary depiction of Jewish family life and in her portrayal of a young musician's love of his craft. Although heavy-handed in places, this clearly reflects the author's desire to promote understanding about an important topic.

Description from Booklist

Hello Heddy Levi
Follows the adventures, at school and at home, of eleven-year-old Hedy Levi, the youngest, smartest, and most original girl in the eighth-grade class at Karem Hatorah Yeshiva.

Description from Publisher

Yitzy and the G. O. L. E. M.
Twelve year old Yitzy Berg's passion for computer games gets him in trouble with his rebbe and with the FBI! Can Yitzy convince everyone that he's not really a computer hacker? Or will his computer mania land the whole Berg family in jail? Join "Yitz Berg from Pittsburgh" in the hair-raising adventure as he tries to untangle the mystery and score the biggest victory of life!

Description from Publisher

Adventure books for youngsters eight to 12 seem to be difficult to find, especially when the hero or heroine is Jewish. This year that void was filled and a number of exciting, interesting books were published. This book is the first in a series and introduces the reader to Yitz Berg from Pittsburgh. The 12-year-old computer whiz finds adjustment to living in Pittsburgh after the Midwest rather hard at times as he faces the anxieties of school, community and family changes. Yitzy goes to a Torah academy and he's a pretty cool kid until he accidentally gets tangled into a computer mystery. Without spoiling the plot or its outcome, this book will be enjoyable for young boys, especially those interested in computers.

Description from Jewish World News

The Lopsided Yarmulke
Young readers won't be able to put down the exciting adventures of Yitzy Berg and his friends! Presenting another adventure story starring Yitzy Berg and his family. After moving from the Midwest to Pittsburgh, Yitzy's life takes a turn for the worse. His new classmates tease him about the way he wears his yarmulke on the side of his head, he's way behind in his learning, and someone locks him in a dark room in the shul's basement! Young readers will enjoy Yitzy's ultimate triumph over his big pack of troubles.

Description from Publisher

Gemarakup Super Sleuth


(Vol. 1)



Lost on Skull Mountain
(Vol. 3)


Yisrael David Finkel is a sixth-grader whose friends call him Gemarakup (Talmudic mind) the police call him Sherlock Holmes because of his knack for solving mysteries using stories from our sages. Join him, and try to solve a few yourself!

Description from Publisher

The Return of Morris Schumsky
Grandpa disappears on the morning of Rebecca's wedding, but returns just in time for the ceremony with a few unexpected but delighted and delightful friends from the local nursing home. His actions are a lesson in loving compassion and bring a special significance to the wedding. This day in the life of a warm, loving Jewish family is filled with the excitement, complications, and last-minute emergencies of getting ready for a wedding. Many Jewish wedding customs and traditions are described. Realistic pen-and-ink drawings illustrate the text.

Description from School Library Journal

With All My Heart, With All My Mind :
Thirteen Stories About Growing Up Jewish
Benjy has nightmares about his upcoming Bar Mitzvah ceremony. Rachel's grief over Grandma Hannah's illness turns her away from her temple. Jaci wrestles with peer pressure by day and angels by night, and when Cain and Abel double-date... well, growing up has never been easy.

As these and nine other stories in With All My Heart, With All My Mind demonstrate, growing up Jewish adds its own twists and turns to the challenge. As we approach the end of the millennium, what does "growing up Jewish" mean? How can young people reconcile centuries of tradition with the modern world? Can they embrace their religion "with all my heart, with all my mind"?

Award-winning author and editor Sandy Asher posed these and other questions to thirteen Jewish writers: herself, Eve B. Feldman, Merrill Joan Gerber, Jacqueline Dembar Greene, Johanna Hurwitz, Eric A. Kimmel, Sonia Levitin, Carol Matas, Gloria D. Miklowitz, Susan Beth Pfeffer, Ruth Minsky Sender, Phyllis Shalant, and Jane Breskin Zalben. From the last days of Masada to the future colonization of the moon, these stories provide unique and personal insights. in the interviews following each story, the authors discuss their own experiences growing up Jewish. These are stories that will make you laugh, cry, think, and above all, help you to explore what it means to be a Jew.

A portion of the money generated from the sale of this book will be donated to MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger.

Description from Publisher

From this fine group, readers would expect skillful, rewarding work--and they get it.

Description from Horn Book

When Shlemiel Went to Warsaw and Other Stories

by Isaac Bashevis Singer
Eight stories, several based on traditional Jewish tales, written by the master storyteller and Nobel Laureate. In the introduction, Singer says, "In my writing there is no basic difference between tales for adults and for young people. The same spirit, the same interest in the supernatural is in all of them"

Description from Publisher

The Singing Mountain
(Hardcover edition)


Paperback edition to be published in May 2000
Mitch Green, a teenager who enjoys carefree days at the beach, decides not to return home to southern California from his summer trip to Israel. Instead of starting his first year at UCLA, he decides to study the Torah and live and study at a yeshiva. He has never before felt the joy and fulfillment he experiences while living in Jerusalem. His parents are convinced he has been brainwashed, but his cousin Carlie, who has lived with the Greens since her parents' death, isn't sure. In alternating chapters, Mitch and Carlie tell their stories of change, maturation, and love. The young man's spiritual growth and interest in his religion and history are fascinating. His strength of character and thoughtfulness are well portrayed. Carlie also matures both spiritually and emotionally, and is a likable, intelligent teenager. Many issues of religion, politics, and family dynamics are raised and discussed by Mitch and Carlie, as well as their friends and family in Israel and America. Another important and outstanding work by Levitin, this unique novel covers fresh territory

Description from School Library Journal

Unjust Cause
David's father, a world-class mathematician, cannot understand David's learning problem and punishes him for being "lazy". Like thousands of other children with learning problems, David is made to feel foolish and inadequate. Then he enrolls in a Jewish Day School and his life is changed.

Description from Publisher

The Passover Passage
Rebecca Able is having a most memorable Passover. She is sailing the Caribbean with her grandparents aboard their sailboat, the Diaspora. During this special voyage, Rebecca learns first-hand what the Exodus from Egypt must have been like for the Jewish people-at once dangerous and frightening, liberating and wondrous. And a cross-cultural friendship she makes in the Bahamas helps Rebecca recognize and appreciate the opportunities she has in her own life. On this unforgettable trip, Rebecca learns not only how a Passover seder is celebrated on board a sailboat; she also learns important lessons of freedom, family and Judaism.

Description from Publisher

Candles
Anya wishes she celebrated Christmas like her friends. Then she receives her grandmother's treasured menorah as a Chanukah gift. As she lights each successive candle, Anya travels back in time to Nazi Germany, and begins to understand she is not the first to face a dilemma of faith.

Description from Publisher

This was an excellent book. I started to read it, and once I started, could not put it down ... The surprise ending turns an otherwise somewhat predicatable book (though with interesting twists and turns) into, basically, one big surprise.

Description from Amazon.com Customer Review
Of Heroes, Hooks, and Heirlooms
Of Heroes, Hooks, and Heirlooms
Mia doesn't know how to participate in her class's study of family history because her parents lost all their belongings save one photograph in the Holocaust. An understanding neighbor helps her to reclaim the family gift of crochet and make a new heirloom. The story about struggling with loss and defining heroism is a moving one.

Description by Horn Book
Dear Elijah
Dear Elijah
Using the Passover holiday not only as a setting, but also as symbol, this story, told in diary form, chronicles 11-year-old Rebecca Samuelson's life after her father's heart attack. Rebecca decides to address her diary to Elijah, the Old Testament prophet, who, legend has it, visits Jewish houses at Passover. To "E" (as she calls him), Rebecca confides her fears for her father, her soul-searching about her own life, and lots and lots of details about Passover. The story is at its best when Rebecca gets to the truth about what life is for a kid and when she muses about religion, both her own and others. There are certainly too few books that deal with that topic.

from Booklist
The Saturday Secret
The Saturday Secret
Jason Siegel thinks his stepfather's new religious observances have gone far enough. First only kosher food at home. Then he is forced to wear a kippah (yarmulke). Now no baseball games on Shabbat! Jason is determined to play ball -- no matter what. But his plan backfires and Jason finds himself entangled in a situation that hurts his teammate’s feelings and jeopardizes his relationship with his mother and step-father.

Grandma's Seder Plate is Missing!:
A Passover Special
From the makers of the original Mendy and the Golem, comes a Passover comic book. This 32 page, full-color bound softcover book is sure to make this Passover an exciting one. The story revolves around Mendy and Rivkie Klein and their adventures when they discover that the Klutz family will be visiting for Passover! The book is sure to inspire children and adults and is the perfect compliment for the Seder. We are receiving extensive media coverage for the first ever, full-featured Jewish comic book.

Description from Publisher

The Kingston Castle
When the Rosenbergs decide to vacation in Kingston, it is to get away from the bustle of city life. Little do they know that the town and its famous castle hold in store the adventure of a lifetime. The Rosenberg kids become fast friends with the Sandler family. The Sandlers live as traditional Jews, and the Rosenbergs begin to discover a world about which they know little.

Description from Publisher

Chernowitz!
A boy who suffers anti-Semitic abuse at the hands of a classmate during his ninth and tenth grade years plots revenge against his tormentor.

Description from Publisher

Matzah Ball :
A Passover Story
Blending baseball and Passover facts, this contemporary, fast-paced story demonstrates that "It's not always easy being Jewish, but sometimes it can lead to miracles." Aaron's happiness at going with his friends to see the Baltimore Orioles is tempered by his mother's reminder that it is Passover and that he can't eat pretzels, crackerjacks, or ice cream. His non-Jewish friends eagerly devour his special lunch, which he refuses to eat. Aaron dislikes being different, especially when the others make one last trip to the concession stands. Surprised when an elderly man (could it be Elijah?) sits down beside him, Aaron listens to the man's memories of Jewish baseball fans going to games at Ebbets Field and receives a special piece of matzah that miraculously helps him catch a home-run ball hit into the bleachers. Bold, detailed watercolors perfectly complement the text's realistic language and emotions. This will be a hit with sports lovers and anyone seeking an added dimension to a holiday story

Description from School Library Journal

Mystery in Miami Beach :
A Vivi Hartman Mystery
Vivi Hartman, a rabbi's daughter, visits her grandmother in Florida during her winter break. While on the plane, she reads a front-page Miami Herald story about an Israeli tourist attacked by a gang. The woman is her grandmother's friend, also visiting in Gram's apartment. In quick succession, Vivi meets a teenaged boy and begins to notice that a rash of red birds, umbrellas, tall men with British accents, and other suspicious characters seem to be popping up everywhere. This is a fast-paced mystery, the premise of which is rooted during the Holocaust -- specifically with the ship St. Louis, which was not allowed to land in either Cuba or Miami in 1939. The ship returned to Europe, where most of the 907 Jewish passengers died. Hebrew terms and Jewish customs are woven seamlessly into the story; indeed, much of this information is crucial to the plot, and all of it adds depth. If Vivi remembers to utilize pilpul -- rabbinical logic -- to solve the ensuing mysteries, she could be a modern-day Sherlock Holmes who also happens to be a nice, bright American Jewish girl.

Description from School Library Journal

Mystery of the Kaifeng Scroll :
A Vivi Hartman Adventure
This sequel to Mystery in Miami Beach finds 15-year-old Vivi jetting off to Istanbul, Turkey, for a summer visit with her mother. Vivi is concerned when Mom fails to meet the plane, sending a young Arab girl named Shari in her stead. Vivi learns that her mother has left Istanbul to authenticate an ancient scroll that may or may not be a Torah taken to China during the 1400s. Later, Vivi overhears a whispered conversation that convinces her that Mom has been kidnapped by Shari's brother, a Palestinian terrorist. Using her considerable linguistic talents as well as her knowledge of the Torah, Vivi unravels the mystery and rescues her mother. Feder portrays Vivi as a strong, savvy, and thoroughly modern young woman who takes her strict Jewish upbringing seriously. Universal themes of trust and independence combine with the specific issue of conflict between Arabs and Israelis to make this a timely and appealing mystery.

Description from Booklist

The Secret of the Mezuzah
(Passport to Danger, No. 1)
Thirteen-year-old Constantine--Con, for short--prefers life on his grandparents' Wyoming ranch to living in stuffy, old Vienna, Austria, with his mother and new stepfather. He complains to the friendly neighborhood baker, Branko, who tells Con that the old city is an exciting hub of espionage, with 1 out of every 10 adults working as an undercover spy. Together with school chum and fellow American, Hannah, Con determines to make life in Vienna more interesting by tracking down a spy. He could never have suspected that the spy he finds would be his mother and that he and Hannah would become involved in the life-threatening pursuit of murderous neo-Nazis. Written to enlighten readers about the Holocaust and how the passive submission and even willing cooperation of European citizens permitted the Nazis to wreak their horror, this suspenseful novel, which has believable and likable protagonists, cloaks its lessons of grim historical realities and contemporary threats of anti-Semitism in a gripping adventure that will rivet readers.

Description from Booklist

Tell It Like It Is
The title better suits a sociological text than it does this novel, written by a mother and her eighth-grade daughter, about the challenges confronting Sarah Eisenberg as she begins high school. Eager to be accepted, Sarah is flattered when a popular clique favors her with its attention. But she soon learns to choose friends with more care as these new companions reveal their petty and demeaning motives. Fortunately, Sarah has strong moral convictions and sound judgment, for each chapter finds her facing yet another crisis--anti-Semitism, gang intimidation, a friend's attempted suicide, drugs, and sex.

The way Sarah negotiates her way through these dilemmas is a parent's dream-come-true. That's not to say that the 14-year-old doesn't test her parents' authority: Sarah does rebel against some of her family's traditional Jewish observances. But her strong sense of self allows her to hold on to the customs that have meaning for her. Although few readers may navigate the obstacle course of social perils and freshman-year traumas as handily as Sarah, all will eagerly turn the pages to see how she fares. On the way, they will acquire some knowledge of Jewish traditions and may gain courage to stick up for what they believe is right.

Description from Booklist

The Secret Files of Lisa Weiss
Lisa Weiss is an Orthodox Jew living in Israel. The women of her family have all been social workers, and she plans to follow in their footsteps, but her father prefers that she keep her options open. When he catches her reading her mother's social-work book instead of doing her homework one too many times, the seventh grader makes a bargain with her dad. She will write case studies of six people in the next six months, including how she helped them and what she learned about herself in the process. If she shows promise, then she will be allowed to pursue her dream. There is nothing new here. The case studies provide a framework to show a variety of disjointed incidents in Lisa's life. The characters are stereotypical (a Holocaust survivor, a Russian immigrant, a bitter girl with divorced parents, a pesky younger sister, etc.). She goes over the cases with her mother and learns an "important lesson" each time. In the end, she realizes that, although she still plans to be a social worker, it is important to do her schoolwork now. An additional purchase.

Description from School Library Journal

Hostage Torah

By Gershon Winkler
Meet Simcha and Moshe, agents of Emes Junior Interpol and two intrepid teens. Moshe, the son of a high-ranking Israeli intelligence officer, with instincts developed on the streets of Tel Aviv and New York, joins forces with Simcha, a Brooklyn rabbi's first-born son, whose talent for logical reasoning has been honed by years of Talmudic study. Together, the dynamic detectives are guided by their Jewish values and ingenuity as they are involved in mystery and danger. A thrilling blend of intrigue, entertainment, and information, this series is a bestseller among teen readers. These mystery books are not only fun, they teach Torah-true hashkafa!

A fanatical band of student militants have stormed the Israeli embassy in a small Islamic nation and are holding thirty-four Jews as hostages. An American student on vacation has a plan that may save them.

Description from Publisher

Peter and Veronica
What happens when your worst enemy becomes your best friend? If you're Peter Wedemeyer and Veronica Ganz, you spend your time exploring the neigborhood, daring each other to do crazy things - and explaining your friendship to your parents. Mrs. Wedemeyer doesn't understand why Peter wants to spend his time with a "troublemaker" like Veronica. She won't even let Veronica in the house. But Peter's mind is made up: He'll fight for his best friend until the bitter end!

Description from Publisher

Tales from Old Jerusalem
Great tales about everyday people in Old Jerusalem.

Description from Publisher

A Story A Day:
Tishrei - Cheshvan (Vol 1)



A Story A Day:
Kislev - Teves (Vol 2)



A Story A Day:
Shevat - Adar (Vol 3)



A Story A Day:
Nissan - Iyar (Vol 4)



A Story A Day:
Sivan - Tammuz (Vol 5)



A Story A Day:
Av - Elul (Vol 6)
Stories for every day of the Jewish calendar.

Description from Publisher

Gabriel's Ark
Gabe is born disabled, and his loving Jewish family teaches and supports him. They miss him when he attends a special school during the week, but everyone looks forward to Shabbat, when they welcome him home for the weekend. Then Gabe turns 13; how will he celebrate his Bar Mitzvah? Like many stories about the disabled, this moving chapter book is told through the eyes of a sibling. Gabe's younger sister, Leah, loves her brother, even though she does get impatient with him sometimes, and she worries that he will mess up in public in the synagogue. His difficulties are never minimized, but with the help of his family and an extraordinary rabbi, Gabe says the Bar Mitzvah prayer his way, all by himself, and he is welcomed into the community. With humanity and hope, the story dramatizes the rabbi's message of acceptance, that "each of us is special in our own way, because we are all created in G-d's image."

Description from Booklist

Sarah With an H
As far as Marti and her girlfriends are concerned, there's no way new girl Sarah is going to become part of their crowd. Nobody's ready to admit jealousy is the reason (Sarah is wealthy, pretty, smart, and plays a mean game of basketball); it's easier to tell themselves that Sarah doesn't fit in because she's Jewish, a sentiment some others in Marti's small town are also voicing. But Sarah also happens to be nice, and that's one of the reasons Marti is having trouble accepting the prevailing opinion. Although the characters here are in high school, this has the feel of a book for a younger readership. The jacket certainly reinforces that perception, and so does the basically uncomplicated nature of the plot. Sarah is too perfect to be real, and the plot is surprisingly low key. Yet Marti's contradictory feelings are convincing enough, and Irwin makes clear the insidious nature of prejudice: when Sarah's action causes the Tigers to lose the championship basketball game, Marti angrily yells, "Jew," then suffers with the knowledge that what they thought has crept into her.

Description from Booklist

Flying With Daniel
A young adventurer traps a skyjacker, discovers a 2,000-year-old treasure, returns a lost son to his anxious parents, and more, on his visit to Eretz Yisrael.

Description from Publisher

Are You Alone on Purpose?
Harry Roth has been Alison Shandling's tormentor for years, taunting her about her autistic twin brother and her own academic brilliance. When the Shandlings decide to introduce their children to their Jewish heritage, Alison and Harry-the rabbi's son-are thrown together under circumstances neither could have imagined. Harry becomes a paraplegic in a diving accident that, Alison feels, may have happened because of her mother's wish that Rabbi Roth's son might become "even more handicapped'' than her own child. She forces Harry to accept her friendship, and the two discover that they have both been emotional cripples for years, at the mercy of their dysfunctional parents. This binds them together, permitting each to let go of the pain of isolation. Alternating chapters related by Alison and Harry carry the story month by month over the course of a year, weaving other aspects of teenage angst into the tapestry of the narrative: Alison's loss of her best friend; the convoluted machinations of the freshman dating scene. The author has taken care to flesh out even minor characters while totally involving readers in the lives of the two main players. While the beginning of a reconciliation between Harry and his father seems a bit facile and the confrontation between Alison and her parents is partially carried out by letters rather than through Werlin's wonderfully strong dialogue, this first novel is a moving portrayal of two remarkable teenagers ably coming to grips with their unhappy circumstances and, one is convinced, triumphing in the end.

Description from School Library Journal

The Swastika on the Synagogue Door
(A Lazarus Family Mystery)
When a Long Island synagogue is defaced with a swastika and an anti-semitic slogan, a teenage brother and sister try to solve the mystery with the help of their rabbi and a Holocaust survivor.

Description from Publisher

Fitting in
Molly, a young Jewish girl growing up in the early sixties, learns about life through trial and error, confronts anti-Semitism at school and at home.

Three Merchants And Other Stories
Delightful true tales from around the globe and through the centuries retold by Shaindel Weinbach, beautifully illustrated by Yosef Dershowitz.

Description from Publisher
Keystone Kids
Keystone Kids
Spike and Bob Russell are baseball-playing brothers, toiling in the minor leagues. While playing for the Nashville Volunteers, they get the call they've been dreaming about -- a promotion to the Brooklyn Dodgers and the Major Leagues. But their excitement proves short-lived as they are embroiled in a contretemps surrounding Brooklyn's new Jewish catcher, Jocko Klein. This excellent story, with a subplot of prejudice, discrimination, and their ultimate resolution, written by perhaps the foremost children's sports author of his generation, is sure to captivate young readers.

Description from Children's Literature

Drummers of Jericho
Meyer paints a bracing picture of conservative small-town America in this riveting examination of intolerance and anti-Semitism. Fresh from a year on a kibbutz and sick of endless fights with her Israeli mother, 14-year-old Pazit Trujillo opts to leave her native Denver and live with her college professor father and his young family for a school year. Little knowing what Jericho, "the buckle of the Bible belt,'' is like, Pazitshort, dark, Jewish and nonconformistis alone in a school full of tall blonds who take football and cheerleading as seriously as their Wednesday night prayer meetings. After Pazit refuses to be part of the school marching band's formation of a cross, Mr. Trujillo contacts the ACLU and she is unwillingly catapulted to the center of a cause celbre that has all of Jericho in an uproar. Her schoolmates' coldness turns to outright hostility, but Pazit finds an unexpected ally in the band's drummer, Billy, who "betrays'' his town to stand up for what he believes is right. With its unflagging pace and timely theme, this provocative novel should spark much debate.

The Remembering Box
Nine-year-old Joshua has visited his Grandma Goldina on the Sabbath since he was five. Joshua loves Roy Rogers and other heroes of his day (1942), but he especially loves these times with Grandma. Every week he picks something out of a big trunk this is Grandma's ``remembering box''and each object reminds her of a story of her childhood. Joshua listens in rapt attention to her humorous tales of adventure that evoke ``the old country.'' Then one night Grandma gives Joshua his own box, and in it are some of his favorites from her box. When Grandma does not open her eyes after her reverie, Joshua carries on the tradition of lighting the Sabbath candles before calling his father. Grandma has passed on more than her own memories; she has given him a sense of heritage of his people as well. This warm and loving relationship between a boy and his grandmother is beautifully depicted and reminiscent of Mathis' The Hundred Penny Box (Viking, 1975). Diamond's silhouettes, used for the stories that Grandma tells Joshua, are dramatic, and her meticulously detailed black-and-white illustrations of Joshua and his grandmother are both expressive and moving.

From School Library Journal

The Golem and the Dragon Girl
When Laurel Wang’s parents decide to move to a larger house, Laurel is worried: She is secretly convinced that the spirit of her great grand father, which has always protected her, lives in the old house. What will happen when she leaves it? When Jonathan’s family moves into the Wang home, there are definitely ghostly goings-on. Jonathan’s life is difficult enough, with a new stepfather he can’t stand, a dog he didn’t really choose, and having to leave his beloved but eccentric uncle Jake. Laurel takes every opportunity to go back to her old house-to try to communicate with her guardian spirit-while Jonathan tries to get his family to let Uncle Jake come and live with them. After a series of frightening episodes involving ghosts, exorcism, and a serious accident, both Laurel and Jonathan discover that answers to their dilemmas lie within their own cultures. Readers too will find fascinating information about both Jewish and Chinese beliefs in this warm and entertaining story by an award-winning author.

A Smile for Sammy
Sammy is the terror of the class. Things haven’t been the same since he came. But Avi has his own ideas about Sammy. The seventh-graders at Noam HaTorah don’t see it that way at all. Will Avi convince them?

Author Sara Stern, a sensitive newcomer, paints a word-portrait of the suburban Weintraub family and the adventures of its members as only she can. Avi, his “charming” twin sisters and all the rest of the Weintraub clan will keep you entertained and in stitches.

Description from Publisher

Conquer the Darkness
A joyous story of triumph over adversity.

A phone call brings Renee Greenberg back to a chapter of her life that had brought pain and fear, but ended in love and laughter.

Description from Publisher

This book was a very well written account of a young girl's struggle to cope with her best friend's sudden accident that results in blindness. It expresses perfectly the challenge of accepting the tragic occurance and the changes that follow.

Description from Amazon.com Reader Review

The Christmas Revolution
Fourth-grader Emily is forced to think about her Jewish heritage when the new boy, an Orthodox Jew, refuses to participate in the school Christmas celebrations. Simeon and Emily stage their own "Christmas Revolution," and their stand helps their classmates learn about Hanukkah.

Description from Publisher

The Blessing of the Animals
Jared is looking forward to the Blessing of the Animals on St. Francis's feast day at the church across the street. He plans to go with his friend Ian and take his dog, Shayna, to be blessed. But when he brings the subject up with his mom, she doesn't think it's such a good idea. Why? Well, they're Jewish. Jared doesn't see this as a problem, but he agrees with his mom's suggestion to poll four people on the subject, and she'll do the same. Jared approaches his great-grandfather, his father, a Holocaust survivor, and a rabbi, all of whom give diverse opinions on Jared's prospective attendance. Its ultimately up to Jared to decide, and readers, while perhaps differing in their views on his ultimate decision, will cheer Jared for making up his own mind in a thoughtful and deeply personal way. This story for middle-grade readers is enhanced by hand-designed chapter titles and full-page pictures by the author.

Description from Publisher

The author of Elijah's Angel: A Story for Chanukah and Christmas takes another careful, penetrating look at cultural and religious boundaries. When Jared sees posters announcing the upcoming St. Francis Festival at St. Catherine's, right across the street from his new apartment, he sees no reason why he can't take his dog Shayna to the Blessing of the Animals-sure, he's Jewish, but Shayna isn't. Understandably, his mother takes a dim view of the idea. She is willing, though, to let him make up his own mind, so long as he first listens to the opinions of eight others on the matter. Enter a priest, two rabbis, relatives and acquaintances of several generations, most of whom offer complicated insights into what it means to be Jewish, and the assimilative pressures faced by minority groups, rather than a simple yea or nay. This is clearly a teaching story, but Rosen fleshes out the situations and characters with buoyant good humor. Christian and Jewish readers both will ponder the issues he raises, but will also come to care enough about Jared to make his eventual decision-the Blessing, no. The potluck afterward? Definitely yes.

Description from Kirkus Reviews

Light for Greytowers

By Eva Vogiel
Fifteen-year old Miriam, a young Russian girl, defies the cruel matron of the English orphanage and inspires the girls to return to a Jewish life in this captivating novel of faith and courage.

Description from Publisher

That's Me, Tzviki Green

By Chaim Walder
When Tzviki's father is sent to New York from Israel with his family for outreach work, Tzviki has a hard time adjusting to a strange new life. But he succeeds and his newfound and hard-won self-confidence serves him well when his family returns home.

Description from Publisher

Our Heroes

By Chaim Walder
More of the beautifully crafted, touching stories for which the author is known. This book will delight children and adults alike, with its stories narrated by children about their challenges, and the tales they are told about great people who have experienced similar situations. An absorbing read!

Description from Publisher

The Conversion of the Jews
Thirteen-year-old Ozzie's questioning of what he is taught in religious class leads to a tense confrontation with his rabbi.

Description from Publisher

Cartons In The Air and Other Stories
Delightful true tales from around the globe and through the centuries retold by Shaindel Weinbach, beautifully illustrated by Yosef Dershowitz.

Description from Publisher

Secret of the Hotel Delarosa:
A Bina Gold Mystery
Bina and Tammy glimpse their red headed classmate from Miami in the Old City. But why is Lisa in Jerusalem? And why is she living in the run-down Hotel DelaRosa with two mysterious women? And who is the stranger in the alley guarding their room? Bina and Tammy will get involved with the Israeli Secret Service and Arab terrorists as they solve this mystery.

The Story Hour, Vol. 1



The Story Hour, Vol. 2
The Story Hour is a collection of great stories for children ages 8-12 that originally appeared in the popular children's magazine, The Moshiach Times. They have been revised and edited by Rabbi Dovid Sholom Pape, and are meaningful and fun to read. The well-written plot of each story inevitably leads to a surprising moment of discovery that reveals the greatness of ordinary people. They also include classic tales of long ago and far away, that are heart warming, full of humor and adventure. Just a brief glance at the book shows that the stories are highly imaginative and inspiring, and that every story has a moral. A camper lost in the wilderness learns that everything is for the best. A young girl experiences a Shabbos miracle...and the story of a Chanukah Menorah that kindled a flame. Each story is enlivened by children's illustrator Dave Berg and the artist Yosef Dershowitz, which help bring the characters to life. The book is printed in a large, easy to read type.

Description from Chabad Magazine, November 1994
Sefer Ha-Aggadah
Sefer Ha-Aggadah: The Book of Legends for Young Readers
The Sefer Ha-Aggadah is made up of six volumes of legends about the Jewish people. This collection is drawn from the first volume, which focuses on stories from the Bible. The legends follow the Old Testament sequentially, but omit major events, such as Jacob receiving Esau's birthright, to concentrate on the legendary material that has grown out of the Biblical tales. Sometimes a story within a story is told to illustrate a concept or clarify a point. The retellings are clearly and crisply written. Older readers familiar with the basic tales will find this approach effective, but the organization may confuse younger readers. The mosaic stylized full-color and black-and-white illustrations add to the book's appeal.

from School Library Journal

The Storyteller, Vol. 1



The Storyteller, Vol. 2



The Storyteller, Vol. 3



The Storyteller, Vol. 4



The Storyteller, Vol. 5
Jewish stories are part of the heritage of our people, often capturing the essence of Jewish experience. The stories in this volume will provide hours of reading enjoyment for older children and teenagers. Parents and teachers will turn to them again and again when they are called upon to be storytellers themselves. The contribution of Nissan Mindel to the treasury of Jewish stories is inestimable. He has, for the past five decades, researched and presented to both English and Yiddish-reading audiences stories mined from sources inaccessible to the average American Jew. They cover a wide range of subjects: great Jewish personalities, the festivals, Jewish life in medieval and pre-Holocaust times, the Holocaust, and life behind the Iron Curtain. The world of innkeeper and nobleman, shepherd and woodchopper, spice merchant and gem dealer, comes alive to reveal to us the workings of Divine Providence or the events that shaped Jewish history.

Description from Publisher

The Very Best Me
In this collection of stories, each young hero faces a difficult situation, yet manages to cope and rise to the challenge.

Description from Publisher

The Hanukkah Ghosts
At the heart of this suspenseful time-slip fantasy set during Hanukkah is a young girl's growing awareness of her Jewish identity. When Susan is sent to England to spend the week with an elderly aunt, she feels as desolate as the gray moors surrounding the stone manor house. But as the Hanukkah candles flicker each night, she mysteriously meets the children who lived there during World War II. One is Hanni, a Jewish refugee; another is Alex, Aunt Elizabeth's prejudiced stepson. Penn strikes a good balance between the ordinary events of daylight and the extraordinary happenings at dusk. Although information about Hanukkah isn't always smoothly integrated into the narrative, it is a minor flaw. This has good style, a likable heroine, and an eerie atmosphere. When Susan is able to correct a terrible injustice that occurred 50 years earlier, she takes part in the miracle of the holiday season.

Description from Booklist

The Marvelous Mix-up and other tales of Reb Sholem
The wise and understanding Rabbi of Keppel is really put to the test! When the richest man in town won't share a penny with anyone, when something mysterious is wrontg with all the children, and when his hateful enemy sets out to revenge on the Jews - will Reb Shalom come to the rescue?

The Egyptian Star -

An Emes Junior Interpol Mystery
Meet Simcha and Moshe, agents of Emes Junior Interpol and two intrepid teens. Moshe, the son of a high-ranking Israeli intelligence officer, with instincts developed on the streets of Tel Aviv and New York, joins forces with Simcha, a Brooklyn rabbi's first-born son, whose talent for logical reasoning has been honed by years of Talmudic study. Together, the dynamic detectives are guided by their Jewish values and ingenuity as they are involved in mystery and danger. A thrilling blend of intrigue, entertainment, and information, this series is a bestseller among teen readers. These mystery books are not only fun, they teach Torah-true hashkafa!

Having promised to find a Nazi murderer in Cairo, two teenage Jewish boys find adventure in both Egypt and Israel as they fall into the hands of Arab terrorists and stumble upon a long-lost treasure.

Description from Publisher

The Floating Minyan of Pirate's Cove -

An Emes Junior Interpol Mystery
Meet Simcha and Moshe, agents of Emes Junior Interpol and two intrepid teens. Moshe, the son of a high-ranking Israeli intelligence officer, with instincts developed on the streets of Tel Aviv and New York, joins forces with Simcha, a Brooklyn rabbi's first-born son, whose talent for logical reasoning has been honed by years of Talmudic study. Together, the dynamic detectives are guided by their Jewish values and ingenuity as they are involved in mystery and danger. A thrilling blend of intrigue, entertainment, and information, this series is a bestseller among teen readers. These mystery books are not only fun, they teach Torah-true hashkafa!

Two teenage boys, one American, one Israeli, try to solve a mystery involving an agent who has been missing for thirty-six years.

Description from Publisher

The Secret of Sambatyon -

An Emes Junior Interpol Mystery
Meet Simcha and Moshe, agents of Emes Junior Interpol and two intrepid teens. Moshe, the son of a high-ranking Israeli intelligence officer, with instincts developed on the streets of Tel Aviv and New York, joins forces with Simcha, a Brooklyn rabbi's first-born son, whose talent for logical reasoning has been honed by years of Talmudic study. Together, the dynamic detectives are guided by their Jewish values and ingenuity as they are involved in mystery and danger. A thrilling blend of intrigue, entertainment, and information, this series is a bestseller among teen readers. These mystery books are not only fun, they teach Torah-true hashkafa!

Description from Publisher

One-of-A-Kind Yanky and Other Stories
Whether collecting runaway spiders, or catching a runaway clown, Yanky Arens is always up to something. Join Yanky's adventures and make friends with a kid who's one-of-a-kind!

Description from Publisher

Choices
Sara Citron came from Texas with stars in her eyes. Edie Oppenheim came from Brooklyn with a glower and a frown -- and an air of mystery. The two fifteen-year-olds were in Montford, New York to attend the local Beth Jacob High School. They were classmates, fellow boarders at the affluent Rudin home, and part-time workers at the local shaatnez lab. It should have been a teen-age idyll -- but it wasn’t.

Something was troubling Edie, something deep. There was a dark secret in her life, and it clouded her relationship with the Rudins, with her schoolmates -- even her precious new friendship with Sara. What was it? Why did she leave home? Who was her anonymous telephone friend? Where did she disappear to? And what was it about little Naftali’s gift to Mrs. Rudin that seemed to shatter Edie’s world?

Choices are always hard, especially for teenagers away from home, struggling with dependency and the urge for freedom. In this book we enter the minds and hearts of Sara and Edie as they are forced to choose -- and we feel for them as each one feels the need for the other to help, to be a friend when only a friend has the right shoulder to lean on.

Description from Publisher

The Hopscotch Tree
Ten-year-old Edith and her family have just moved, and she finds herself the only Jew in her new school. Because of this, she is targeted for teasing, pinching, hair pulling, and name calling ("skinny little Jew,'' "kike,'' and "Jew girl'') by Zandra and her gang. When she discovers and confronts the ringleader with the fact that Zandra herself is half Jewish, Edith learns the true meaning behind the proverb, "Better that my enemy should see good in me than I see evil in him.'' Set in Los Angeles in 1960, the book offers a smattering of period details--marches for integration, air raid drills in school, President Kennedy, and oblique references to the cold war.

From School Library Journal

The Friendly Persuader And Other Stories
Delightful true tales from around the globe and through the centuries retold by Shaindel Weinbach, beautifully illustrated by Yosef Dershowitz.

Description from Publisher

The Secret of the Space Scrolls and Cholent
Jewish Science Fiction

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