Maccabee!: The Story of Hanukkah

Kar-Ben Publishing  2010

Maccabee tells the Hanukkah story, focusing on the actions of the famed heroic family that led the fight in Jerusalem against the idol-loving Greeks and their leader King Antiochus in ancient times (165 B.C.E.). The action in the picture book focuses on the small group of Jews who struggled long ago against oppression and injustice inflicted by the invading Greeks as well as their resistance to assimilation. Forced idol worshiping and the invading army’s desecration of the Temple enrage the Maccabees. They steal away and regroup in the Judean Hills to plan their winning attack on the wellarmed invaders. The epilogue jumps to modern day asking the question “What would Judah do?” making the leap to question our modern-day observances of the events. The account is told in an accessible rhyme with a refrain “Sometimes it only takes a few,/who know what’s right and do it, too.” Children will relate to the bright, stylized, cartoon-like illustrations and the characters’ dramatic expressions. The compositions are dynamic and bold. For ages 4–8.

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