A retelling of a classic folktale details the Passover eve arrival of a mysterious magician at the home of a pious and poor couple, and how he magically brings about all the things necessary to celebrate the Seder. Reprint. K. C.
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PreSchool-Grade 3-- Peretz's story, written in 1904, is rooted in the folk tradition of Elijah tales. It tells of a mysterious stranger who asks to be a guest at the Seder table of a poor but pious Jewish couple, and who then magically provides the supplies for the feast. Goldin's adaptation is written with the economy of poetry and a hint of Yiddish cadence. She describes the magician's (Elijah's) tricks with wonder and personalizes the husband as a man of honor, one who is charitable despite his poverty, and whose faith in God lends him endless optimism. Parker's dark, earth-toned watercolors with touches of rust and persimmon are perfect for this telling as they further the illusion of a maelstrom of magic. Who is to know if these are gifts from heaven or hell? Imaginary or real? No wonder the couple hastens to the rabbi to ask his advice on whether it is all right for them to accept such gifts. While there are many versions of the story available, authors and artists treat it differently--even to portraying different values that make the poor couple worthy of Elijah's beneficence. Peretz and Shulevitz's The Magician (Macmillan, 1985) is a straightforward telling that centers on the concept of ``hospitality to the stranger.'' With simple illustrations in black and white, it, too, is valid, but Goldin and Parker's treatment is far more attractive. --Marcia Posner, Federation of New York and the Jewish Book Council, New York City
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
An Elijah tale like Goldin's Just Enough Is Plenty , this version concerns a couple so poor they cannot buy food for a seder, though Hayim-Jonah believes God will provide and reminds his wife of the real reason for rejoicing ("We celebrate our freedom today. No tears"). When a wandering magician summons flaming candlesticks, armchairs and bitter herbs from the air, the awed recipients fear the seder is a deception until they apply the rabbi's test. Parker's spare etchings, drenched in ochres, grays, umber and mauve, evoke the humble surroundings and fortitude of these characters--and the magician's startling transformation--while light, shadow and penetrating eyes intensify the intimacy of a couple dependent on each other and on their faith. Goldin's cogent retelling offers issues and thoughtful responses for adults to explore further with children. An end note explains Passover, Elijah tales and this story's source. Ages 3-8.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Puffin. PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0140544550 New Condition. Slight shelf wear on cover. Bookseller Inventory # DEU-6DFT-C364
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