LIZA’S BOOK CORNER: ‘An Invitation to Passover’ | Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle

LIZA’S BOOK CORNER: ‘An Invitation to Passover’ 

“An Invitation to Passover,” by Rabbi Kerry Olitzky and Rabbi Deborah Bodin Cohen, illustrated by Mariia Kolker, published by Kalaniot Books 

When grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins cannot attend Hannah’s family seder, her parents are thrilled when Hannah suggests inviting friends. This is a beautiful picture book, welcoming a diverse group of guests to celebrate Passover. It fosters respect and sharing between people of other faiths and cultures and makes connections between our Jewish traditions with the guests’ experiences. A glossary and explanation of Passover included at the end of the book. 

“Under-the-sea Seder,” by Ann D. Koffsky, published by Apples and Honey 

Do your kids have trouble sitting still at the seder? In this colorful and engaging picture book, children are given permission to use their imaginations to help them through the seder. It also encourages children to sing songs including the “Ma Nishtanah,” dance and celebrate. At the end of the book, Koffsky offers some great suggestions on keeping children engaged.  

“The Most Annoying Aliens Ever” by Leah Sokol, illustrated by Teresa Ramos, published by Apples and Honey Press  

Do your kids annoy one another? This adorable picture book will help elementary students deal with younger siblings who sometimes get on their nerves or frustrate them. Parents can utilize this as a launching point on how to help siblings handle conflicts with more understanding and without retaliation. In the author’s “Dear Reader” note, there is a beautiful explanation of Judaism’s perspective on kindness and patience, connecting these qualities to a peaceful home.   

“Brand-New Bubbe,” by Sarah Aronson, illustrated by Ariel Landy, published by Charlesbridge 

When Jillian’s mother marries a Jewish man, she not only gains a stepdad, but she also gets a bubbe. This insightful and compassionate picture book shows the emotional challenge of welcoming new people into one’s life, especially when Jewish traditions are at odds with what’s known. Bubbe’s patience and warmth eventually win Jillian’s heart, leading to a more peaceful blended family. 

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Educator and author Liza Wiemer, of Fox Point, has taught in nine of our Milwaukee-area Jewish religious schools and day schools. Her latest novel,“The Assignment,” is appropriate for ages 12 and up.