The Mysterious Visitor: Stories of the Prophet Elijah

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9780590484220: The Mysterious Visitor: Stories of the Prophet Elijah

An evocative collection of folktales features the prophet Elijah, a messenger from heaven who comes to earth in many disguises. By the author of The Uninvited Guest.

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From School Library Journal:

Grade 1-4. An attractive and handsomely produced companion title to The Uninvited Guest and Other Jewish Holiday Tales (Scholastic, 1993). Eight stories from German-Jewish traditions, Yiddish folklore, Morocco, and ancient Palestine have as their central character the Biblical prophet, Elijah. Although traditionally associated with the Jewish festival of Passover, Elijah has also taken on the persona of one who helps those in need. "The Dream" is a variation of the tale popularized in Uri Shulevitz's The Treasure (Farrar, 1979), while "Elijah in the Marketplace" has previously been retold by Isaac Bashevis Singer in Elijah the Slave (Farrar, 1970). The stories are told in a gentle voice that is well suited to reading aloud. Although there are morals in each tale concerning the need to live wisely and treat strangers with kindness, the tone is never didactic. Nor are these selections limited to a Jewish audience. All children can recognize familiar motifs found in other folktales such as "The Fisherman and His Wife" and "Snow White and Rose Red." Certainly, the precepts are universal and of universal appeal. The full-page art is colorful and sets each story's mood with an appealing mix of concrete and abstract imagery. Jaffe provides a thoughtful introduction and notes on the origin of each selection.?Susan Pine, New York Public Library
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist:

Gr. 4^-6, younger for reading aloud. The mysterious visitor of the title is the biblical Elijah, who began his career as a stern prophet and metamorphosed into a benevolent protector and wishgiver in folklore. Jaffe has chosen and adapted eight stories out of the hundreds from all over the Jewish world that contain references to Elijah. Though centered on a biblical prophet, the stories will not be unfamiliar in either structure or substance to young readers. In one tale from France, Elijah comes and offers a choice of wishes to three brothers: riches, wisdom, or a wise and righteous wife. In another piece, set in Morocco, an evil spirit gives the woman the face of a donkey. Each of these engagingly told stories has at its core such values as love of learning, respect for marriage, and the Golden Rule. Illustrator Elivia Savadier provides one full-page pen-and-watercolor illustration, Chagall-like in feeling, for every tale. Adults will be interested in the author's note that gives the derivation of the stories. An informative glossary and a bibliography are also appended. Ilene Cooper

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Jaffe, Nina; Savadier, Elivia [Illustrator]
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