Sunday, November 18, 2007

Vasilly's List

I still don't have all five of the books I'm going to read for this challenge, but I think I'm going to leave the last possibility open to whatever book I discover. Here's my list:
Beware of God - Shalom Auslander
The Wholeness of a broken heart - Katie Singer
The World to Come - Dara Horn or In the Image by the same author
Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky

The list can change at any time.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Zahava's list


I'm Zahava, and I work in a synagogue in Alaska.

I picked these five books from a bunch I got at a recent book sale at my shul. It was a jackpot for replenishing my reading because the used books stores up here don't have. I noticed that I have some overlaps with some other folks, but I think that's fine--maybe we'll have more to discuss!

Wrestling With Zion: Progressive Jewish American Responses to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict edited by Tony Kushner and Alisa Solomon
Rabbis and Wives by Chaim Grade
The Rent Tent by Anita Diamant
My Name is Asher Lev by Chaim Potok
Four Centuries of Jewish Women's Spirituality

I already read three from the book sale:
a novel called Days of Awe by Achy Obejas which is about a Cuban-American daughter of a crypto-Jew with a a very pained past
Aimee & Jaguar by Erika Fischer non-fiction account of two German women lovers, one Jewish, and one married to a Nazi, during the time of the Holocaust
and Chosen By God: A Brother's Journey by Joshua Hammer a secular Jew's memoir of his brother's path to Orthodox Judaism

I would recommend all three as an enjoyable, educational read. I learned more about Jews in Cuba, Jews who attemtped to live in Berlin "underground," and the inside life of some sects of Orthodoxy I am less familiar with. What I didn't understand was why Hammer was so angry with his brother for becoming Orthodox. He is so upset with his brother that the book initially left a bad taste in my mouth, but I eventually came to appreciate the book as much for the stories from withing his brother's world as for the insight into the author's thoughts and relationship to his brother.

If anyone out there is looking for other book suggestions, here are some of my other favorites:

How to Run a Traditional Jewish Household by Blu Greenberg is one of my all-time favorite Jewish books! Homemaking manual meets halachic instructions meets 1970s feminist--count me in! If only the world weren't so slow to arrive to some of Greenberg's visions. Nevertheless, I appreciate the detail with which she explains the efforts to create a traditional Jewish home.

Davita's Harp by Chaim Potok is a touching and poignant novel about a girl's journeys in Judaism.

Mazel by Rebeccau Goldstein is a novel of three generations of Jewish women who go from shteltl to Yiddish New York stage to secular America to academia back to Orthodox New Jersey. A fantastic journey!

Friday, November 9, 2007

Becky's List

Here are my list of books. I'm sure I can't get to all of them. But I am going to try to read at least five of them. As always, I may change the list as I go along.

The Diary of A Young Girl by Anne Frank
I Have Lived A Thousand Years by Livia Bitton Jackson
(My Bridges of Hope by Livia Bitton Jackson)
(Hello, America by Livia Bitton Jackson)
No Pretty Pictures by Anita Lobel
Night by Elie Wiesel
Until We Meet Again by Michael Korenblit and Kathleen Janger
Alicia My Story by Alicia Appleman-Jurman
The Cage by Ruth Minsky Sender
To Life by Ruth Minsky Sender
Isabella From Auschwitz to Freedom by Isabella Leitner
The Tale of The Ring: A Kaddish by Frank Stiffel
Dry Tears: The Story of A Lost Childhood by Nechama Tec
A Special Fate Chiune Sugihara: Hero of the Holocaust by Alison Leslie Gold
In My Hands: Memories of A Holocaust Rescuer by Irene Gut Opdyke
I Will Plant You A Lilac Tree by Laura Hillman

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
Schindler's List by Thomas Keneally
Escaping Into the Night by D.Dina Friedman
Shanghai Shadows by Lois Ruby

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Callista's List

Okay I finally decided on my books. I'll be reading the following:

The Christmas Revolution by Barbara Cohen
The Rabbi's Girls by Johanna Hurwitz
A Woman in Jerusalem by A.B. Yehoshua
Emil and Karl by Jacob Glatstein
Yellow Star by Jennifer Roy
The Illuminated Soul by Aryeh Lev Stollman

Plus I'll be reading Picture books and Children's Non-fiction on Hannukah and Passover that I just pick from the library at the time.