This attractive, large format, table top book provides excellent introductory biographies of the personalities that inhabit the Mishnah, the text that makes up the heart of the Talmud. The Mishnah is a famously atomized work, with quotes from rabbis who lived in disparate locations and centuries. Wein has succeeded in pulling these figures together and straightening them into a timeline that will help the reader understand how Rabbinic Judaism developed.
Moreover, he provides hooks to Jewish and world history along the way. Readers should be aware, however, that the sources he uses are the Rabbis themselves and those seeking insights from scholarly references and contemporary perspective might be disappointed.
Jeff Bogursky reads a lot, writes a little and talks quite a bit. He is a media executive and expert in digital media.