Thursday, March 12, 2015

The Patchwork Torah - Children's Book #Review!


The Patchwork Torah was written by Allison Ofanansky.
The Patchwork Torah was winner of the 2014 National Jewish Book Award! 



Information about the book:
As a child, David watches his grandfather, a Torah scribe or sofer, finish a Torah scroll for the synagogue. "A Torah is not something to be thrown away," his Grandfather explains in The Patchwork Torah. David's grandfather carefully stores the old Torah where his new one used to be in his cabinet. As David's grandfather is hoping to one day repair the letters so the Torah can be used again.

David grows up and becomes a sofer just like his grandfather. Through the years, people bring him damaged Torahs they have saved from danger and disaster - one damaged by Nazi soldiers during World War II, one damaged in a fire in a synagogue and one in flooding during Hurricane Katrina. David stores each of these precious Torahs in his cabinet, until his granddaughter Leah gives him the idea to make a recycled Torah from the salvaged Torah scrolls.


My Review:
I know a little bit about the Jewish religion and heritage. But I had no idea the significance of Torah, or that Jewish people danced with it! So exciting! Sounds like fun to me! I also think that it's super awesome that the letters and words on the Torah are written in Hebrew. David the boy in the story's grandfather taught him how to sharpen the quills and how to use them to write Hebrew letters on a scrap of paper.

The Patchwork Torah explains about the war with the Nazi's and a little about the Holocaust, how Jewish people had to hide themselves and how each Torah had it's own story and history. The last Torah in the story comes from Hurricane Katrina. Which helps to tie the past stories of the book into the present.


About the Author
Allison Ofanandky was born in the United States, and now lives in the village of Kaditah, Israel near the mystical city of Tzfat, with her husband and daughter. They enjoy hiking the hills of the Galilee and gathering and eating the fruits that grow there. They are involved in many environmental and eco-peace projects. Allison is the author of Kar-Ben's "Nature in Israel Holiday Series" that includes "Harvest of Light," "Sukkot Treasure Hunt," "What's the Buzz: Honey for a Sweet New Year" and "Cheesecake for Shavuot."

About the Illustrator
Elsa Oriol completed her studies in Graphic Arts, Interiors Architecture and Decorative Painting in France. After working as an interiors architect, she now dedicates her time to painting and illustration. She works in acrylics and gouache.

From the Jewish Book World - "Through its serene, oil, painted illustrations and warm language, The Patchwork Torah demonstrates the importance of cycles in Judaism - the cycle of the reading of the Torah ending and beginning on the holiday of Simchat Torah, the cycle of the generations and re-cycling."

Publisher's Weekly - "Surprisingly inventive and genuinely uplifting, this story beautifully and subtly ties together two key Jewish precepts: l'dor v'dor (generation to generation) and tikkum olam (repair the world)."

Purchase your copy of "The Patchwork Torah" today on amazon.com ($7.52 for paperback), at Karben.com and a book retailers near you.

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