Yos­si and the Mon­keys: a Shavuot Story

Jen­nifer Tzivia MacLeod; Shirley Wais­man, illus.
  • Review
By – March 25, 2017

Only periph­er­al­ly about Shavuot, this sto­ry is rem­i­nis­cent of the clas­sic Caps for Sale, in that it involves caps (kip­pahs) and mon­keys. Yos­si has no mon­ey for chal­lah or blintzes to cel­e­brate Shavuot, so his wife Mal­ka makes three kip­pahs for Yos­si to sell in the mar­ket. When no one wants to buy them, he sits down to rest beneath a tree, and when he wakes, the kip­pahs are gone, stolen by a mon­key swing­ing through the branch­es above him. Sound famil­iar? The adorable mon­key, whom Yos­si names Zelig (bless­ing) attracts cus­tomers so that Yos­si leaves the mar­ket with some rubles in his pock­et, enough to buy veg­eta­bles for soup, an apple for Zelig, and fab­ric for Mal­ka to make more kip­pahs. Man and mon­key con­tin­ue to sell kip­pahs until one day it rains, and Zelig disappears. 

Though cheer­ful­ly illus­trat­ed, this deriv­a­tive sto­ry is more about friend­ship than Shavuot, and adding a blintz doesn’t make it more so. An addi­tion­al hol­i­day choice for read­ers, but cute enough otherwise. 

Rec­om­mend­ed for ages 3 – 6.

Teri Mark­son has been a children’s librar­i­an for over 18 years. She is cur­rent­ly the act­ing senior librar­i­an at the Val­ley Plaza Branch Library in North Hol­ly­wood, CA.

Discussion Questions