What a Way to Start a New Year!: A Rosh Hashanah Story

Jacque­line Jules; Judy Stead, illus.
  • Review
By – November 8, 2013

Dina, Har­ry, and their baby broth­er, Mar­cus, move with their par­ents to a new town right before Rosh Hashanah. A series of mishaps keeps them from trav­el­ing back to cel­e­brate the New Year with their for­mer neigh­bors. They are gloomi­ly unpack­ing box­es in their new home and are not look­ing for­ward to eat­ing left­over piz­za, so they are very hap­py when the Levines invite them to ser­vices and din­ner. After enjoy­ing the famil­iar ser­vices at the new syn­a­gogue, they have their favorite hol­i­day foods, includ­ing chal­lah and brisket, at the home of the kind­ly Levines. The Levines con­ve­nient­ly have grand­chil­dren close to Dina’s and Harry’s ages, so new friends are made and the end­ing is a hap­py one. 

This very sweet sto­ry is com­ple­ment­ed by Judy Stead’s expres­sive full-col­or illus­tra­tions. The book ends with the author’s note on the impor­tance of hachnasat orchim — wel­com­ing guests — and pro­vides a dif­fer­ent mes­sage than most oth­er Rosh Hashanah books. Recom­mended for ages 4 – 7.

Andrea David­son is the librar­i­an of The Tem­ple-Tifer­eth Israel in Beach­wood, Ohio. She holds an M.L.S. from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Michi­gan and is a for­mer mem­ber of the Syd­ney Tay­lor Book Awards Com­mit­tee. She enjoys try­ing out the books she reviews on the kids at the Tem­ple and on her grandchildren.

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