The Golem’s Latkes is another winner for award-winning author Eric A. Kimmel. In a style appropriate for young children, he combines the story of the Golem of Prague, allegedly crafted by Rabbi Judah Loew, the Maharal of the fifteenth century, with the classic story, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. Rabbi Loew goes to visit the Emperor, leaving his new housemaid to prepare both the house and the Hanukkah latkes for his guests. He returns to find that she has empowered the Golem to make the latkes instead. She has not returned home to instruct the Golem with the words “Golem, enough,” causing an overabundance of latkes to ensue, which are threatening to overtake the entire town. A note from the author explaining the historical facts and some of the Jewish content appears at the beginning of the book. This makes the story non-parochial and universally appealing for all readers. Even so, there is much Jewish content. The layout is designed beautifully. Illustrations are created in acrylic on wood panels and add significantly to the effectiveness of the story. The font also adds to the drama on each page, sometimes appearing in black and sometimes in white text. This book is highly recommended for ages 5 – 9, as a read-to for younger children and as a read-alone for older readers.
The Golem’s Latkes
Shelly Feit has an M.L.S. and a Sixth-year Specialist’s Certificate in information science. She is the library director and media specialist at the Moriah School in Englewood, NJ.
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