Rob Costello works at the Brooklyn Fish Market. One day as he goes about his work, one of the fish starts talking to him. In Yiddish! Rob doesn’t understand Yiddish but his boss, Mr. Lipshitz, does. “It sounds like my Aunt Louise!” he exclaims. The two men decide that there’s only one thing to do with a talking fish: give it its freedom. As they do so, they think they may hear some klezmer music arising from the lake. That’s all there is to this unusual and quirky story, with equally beguiling illustrations, but it makes for a fun read-aloud. There is an author’s note, and even some suggested related activities at the back of the book. One complaint: the fish’s comments, set into speech balloons, are written in English and in Hebrew/Yiddish letters. It would have been helpful to have a transliteration of the Yiddish, or a note at the back to guide readers not fluent with the Hebrew alphabet. Everyone should be able to savor the Yiddish flavor. Recommended for ages 3 – 6.
The Yiddish Fish
January 20, 2016
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