The subtitle describes this Haggadah perfectly. It is the most traditional of the Haggadot reviewed here — the complete Hebrew text, both translated and transliterated — with a thoughtful and wide-ranging introduction and three reflective essays. And all this served up with the Tablet edge — tradition laced with questioning, sly humor, and an ultra-contemporary sensibility. A good example is the seder plate, illustrated with a classic setting accompanied by a bar along the bottom of the page suggesting six possible additions representing everything from the just-about- traditional orange to a pine cone for criminal justice reform. There are four daughters to complement the four sons (three of whom are old enough to sport a mustache). If a leader finds the text lagging a little, there are occasional alerts on how to skip ahead or try a diversion.
Maron L. Waxman, retired editorial director, special projects, at the American Museum of Natural History, was also an editorial director at HarperCollins and Book-of-the-Month Club.