Charming illustrations bring to life a by-gone era, as Nina tells the story of her family’s Sabbath lace tablecloth, which has been handed down from generation to generation. In Vienna, Austria, her great-great-great grandmother, Lotty Gross, a celebrated lace maker, made a beautiful lace tablecloth to welcome the Sabbath Queen to her home on Shabbat. Nina tells what happened when the Empress Elizabeth saw the exquisite tablecloth and insisted on buying it to use at her palace receptions. Once she found out the tablecloth’s importance to Lotty, the Empress proved to have a heart. She sent it to Lotty to use it every weekend, and left it to Lotty in her will when she died. Now Nina’s grandmother has given Nina’s mother the tablecloth, and they have told Nina that someday it will be given to her.
First in a new series from Gefen of Jewish Heirloom Stories, this includes space at the end for young readers to write in information about Shabbat heirlooms they have at their own homes, and to paste in photos of them. They will be encouraged to find out about such heirlooms as candlesticks or Kiddush cups from their parents and grandparents, and will learn their family’s history in this way. Lehman-Wilzig, the Israeli author of Tasty Bible Stories and Keeping the Promise, emphasizes in a gentle, non-preachy way the importance of honoring the Sabbath, as well as the importance of appreciating and retaining family history. This is a lovely addition to Shabbat stories for Jewish libraries, and would make a nice gift for children and grandchildren. Ages 6 – 10.