Farmer Kobi’s Hanukkah Match

Karen Ros­tok­er-Gru­ber & Rab­bi Ron Isaacs CB Deck­er, illus.
  • Review
By – December 2, 2015

One of the intro­duc­to­ry titles from Apples & Hon­ey Press, a new imprint of Behrman House and Gefen Pub­lish­ing House, this is a sweet sto­ry about Farmer Kobi, who is kind and hard-work­ing but clue­less when it comes to find­ing a suit­able match. When Kobi invites Pol­ly to his farm for a spe­cial Hanukkah din­ner, his equal­ly kind and car­ing ani­mals do their best to make her feel wel­come. Pol­ly is hor­ri­fied that ani­mals are allowed to live in the house. She final­ly flees, slam­ming the door on her way out and leav­ing Kobi com­plete­ly bewil­dered. As fate would have it, Ruthie, a young woman with a friend­ly smile, soon knocks on the door ask­ing to use the phone. She is invit­ed to din­ner — along with her own truck­ful of ani­mals — and it is quick­ly clear that Kobi and Ruthie are a per­fect match. Some of the illus­tra­tions, all live­ly and expres­sive, also incor­po­rate Hebrew words, which are fun to find. A note at the end explains the Jew­ish val­ues of com­pas­sion for ani­mals (tza’ar ba’alei chayy­im) and wel­com­ing guests (hachnasat orchim) as well as sug­ges­tions for ques­tions to stim­u­late con­ver­sa­tion with children. 

Rec­om­mend­ed for ages 4 – 8.

Susan Kan­tor was a senior writer/​editor for Girl Scouts of the USA, a chil­dren’s book edi­tor, and a past judge for the Nation­al Jew­ish Book Awards in the illus­trat­ed children’s book cat­e­go­ry. She is a writer and a docent at the Rubin Muse­um in New York City, where she leads pub­lic and pri­vate tours.

Discussion Questions