Paper Brigade Vol­ume Four

2020/5780 — 2021/5781

Fea­tur­ing inter­views with Natasha Díaz, André Aci­man, T Kira Mad­den, and Dani Shapiro, a Jew­ish lit­er­ary map of Egypt, an anno­tat­ed read­ing list on friend­ship by Lau­ren Mech­ling, and more. At check­out, you will be giv­en an option to a add a gift note to this order.


Table of Contents


I Am a Bom­bay on the Move’
Diane Mehta

Tak­ing the Road
Emi­ly Burack

Los­ing Our Reli­gion
Court­ney Maum

Search­ing for the Jew­ish Sher­lock
Mol­ly Odintz

Fugue States
Mar­got Singer

Louisa May Alcott and the Jews of Lit­tle Women
Emi­ly Schneider

His­to­ry on a Cock­tail Nap­kin
Michael David Lukas

Rachel Kadish

Mag­ic, Mem­o­ry, and Mass Mur­der
Moriel Roth­man-Zech­er

Rab­bis, Detec­tives, and Twen­ty-Nine Witch­es
Riv­ka Galchen

The Silent Toil­ers Are No Longer Silent
Alex­is Landau

The Return of Cryp­to-Jews
Doreen Car­va­jal

Jews, Mon­ey, and Lit­er­a­ture
Ezra Glin­ter

Mor­tal­i­ty Faced You as a Ques­tion 
Ilana Masad

Blood Libel and the Writ­ten Word
Edward Beren­son

Queer­ing Gen­e­sis
Sarah Blake

Dalia Rosen­feld 


The Lost Book of Adana More­au
Michael Zap­a­ta

The Con­vert
Ste­fan Hert­mans, trans­lat­ed by David McKay

The Book of V.
Anna Solomon


Holy of Holies
Jake Marmer

Remem­ber Me
Ilan Sta­vans

light-sen­si­tive puz­zle piece
Eri­ka Meitner

Shon­na Levin

Key Food in the Time of Pan­dem­ic
Amy Got­tlieb

Art & Photography

Jacques and Jacque­line Groag

Fac­ing Sur­vival
David Kas­san

Kvetch­ers in the Rye
Ken Krim­stein

Rab­bits, Tigers, and Col­ored Pen­cils
Joan­na Carey

Beyond the Shad­ows
Judy Glick­man Lauder

A Brief Note on Artemisia Gentileschi’s Esther 
Kei­th Christiansen

Audac­i­ties of Col­or
LaN­i­tra M. Berger


The Real­ist

Basia Wino­grad

The Lit­tle Bottles

Abi­gail Weaver


North­ern Lights
Yoy­sef Ker­ler, trans­lat­ed by Maia Evrona

Mox Nox
Shi­mon Adaf, trans­lat­ed by Philip Simpson

The World Stops at the Edge of the Word
Yonit Naa­man, trans­lat­ed by Ayelet Tsabari


Dani Shapiro & T Kira Mad­den
Bec­ca Kantor

Boris Fish­man & Bon­nie Frumkin Morales

Natasha Díaz
Michal Hoschan­der Malen

André Aci­man
Rus­sell Janzen

Deb­o­rah Levy
Bec­ca Kantor

Rec­om­mend­ed Reading

A Woman’s Voice
Ruth Andrew Ellenson

With Friends like These
Lau­ren Mechling

2019/2020 in Review

To Our Readers

Pro­grams & Publications

Index of Book Reviews

2019/2020 Net­work Authors


JBC Net­work Communities

2018 Nation­al Jew­ish Book Awards

2019 Nation­al Jew­ish Book Awards

Natan Notable Books

Note from the Editor

There are a mul­ti­tude of Jew­ish expe­ri­ences,” Natasha Díaz observes in this issue of Paper Brigade. This sen­ti­ment, which has been deeply under­scored in the past year, also speaks to the essence of our journal.

In these pages, we aim to high­light the diver­si­ty of Jew­ish lives and books. Díaz dis­cuss­es the com­plex­i­ty of racial and reli­gious iden­ti­ty, which is also reflect­ed in her debut YA nov­el. Poet Diane Mehta describes carv­ing out a place for her own spir­i­tu­al­i­ty after strug­gling to rec­on­cile the Jew­ish and Jain tra­di­tions of her par­ents. Oth­er authors reflect on sci­en­tif­ic advances that have made our con­cept of her­itage more nuanced — the results of DNA tests under­pin mem­oirs by Dani Shapiro and T Kira Mad­den as well as a new wave of lit­er­a­ture reclaim­ing the lega­cy of crypto-Jews.

While many Jew­ish expe­ri­ences have only recent­ly been acknowl­edged, they have always exist­ed. Today, many writ­ers are bring­ing mar­gin­al­ized fig­ures of the past into the canon. Sarah Blake reimag­ines the sto­ry of Noah’s ark as a queer nar­ra­tive, and an excerpt from Ste­fan Hertmans’s nov­el The Con­vert details the strug­gles of an actu­al eleventh-cen­tu­ry woman who con­vert­ed to Judaism. LaN­i­tra M. Berg­er explores a moral­ly com­plex chap­ter of Jew­ish his­to­ry through the apartheid-era paint­ings of Irma Stern.

This year, many of us have felt iso­lat­ed. Books show us that we’re not alone — in fact, they can bring us togeth­er on an ever-widen­ing scale. One need look no fur­ther than an excerpt from Michael Zapata’s debut nov­el, in which two boys of dif­fer­ent back­grounds bond over their shared love of a work of sci­ence fic­tion. As Boris Fish­man notes in an inter­view, Kin­ship can come from shared ideas and feel­ings, not just from shared expe­ri­ence.” I hope you’ll find your own sense of kin­ship in the fol­low­ing pages.

Bec­ca Kan­tor, Edi­to­r­i­al Director

Could­n’t make it to the vir­tu­al launch par­ty? Watch a record­ing of the event on Face­book or YouTube.