Could there be a more beautiful version of Abraham and Sarah’s story than this sparkling book, lyrically written by Allegra Magrisso and glowingly illustrated by Beth Shadur? It’s a retelling of the familiar Bible story in which God promises Abraham and Sarah a child but Sarah, convinced that their advanced ages have precluded this possibility, just laughs and laughs when she hears these words. But there is no mockery in Sarah’s laughter and no bitterness. There is no negativity and not a shred of doubt. All that is reflected in her peals of laughter is sheer delight and joy. It is an expression of faith, love and optimism that echoes throughout the generations and models a way of seeing the world that all would do well to emulate.
Full double page spreads in rich jewel-like tones accompany perfectly targeted language and the result is a delightful picture book perfect for sharing with children of all ages and stages. It can also enrich school programs and informal youth activities and can be used to spark guided discussions on a variety of levels.
Michal Hoschander Malen is the editor of Jewish Book Council’s young adult and children’s book reviews. A former librarian, she has lectured on topics relating to literacy, run book clubs, and loves to read aloud to her grandchildren.