This week’s book recommendations from Ilka Gordon, On Site Director, Aaron Garber Library

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This week’s book recommendations from Ilka Gordon, On Site Director, Aaron Garber Library, 26500 Shaker Boulevard. Library Hours: Mon.-Thurs. 9-4. Phone 216-371-0446 ext.269

The Kindertransport to Britain 1938/39 : New Perspectives edited by Andrea Hammel and Bea Lewkowicz.

The Kindertransport to Britain 1938/39 contains essays which provide new perspectives on the Kindertransport, which in 1938-1939 brought almost 10,000 children from Nazi controlled countries to Britain.  Some of the topics discussed are children who were forced to migrate further to Scotland, Australia and New Zealand.  Former transportees write about their experiences leaving their parents and being placed in foster homes surrounded by a new culture, language and social environment.

Recommended for patrons who want to delve deeply into the personal consequences for the children who were forced to leave everything that was familiar to them and patrons who are not afraid to have the bubble of British humanitarianism and love of Jewish children burst.


The Disappearance : A Novella and Stories by Ilan Stavens (translated from Spanish) copyright 2006.

Ilan Stavens has been called one of the most important writers of his generation.  “The title story concerns the obituary of Belgian actor, who gained notoriety some years before by orchestrating his fake Fascist Youth League kidnapping. The novella takes place during a week of sitting shivah at the home of a prominent Mexico City businessman, while a heated presidential election rages outside. “Xerox Man” traces the crimes of a fanatical Argentinean Orthodox Jew who believes he can unleash divine chaos in New York City by destroying ancient documents after photocopying them.” OCLC comment Recommended for patrons interested in fiction that includes orthodox characters.


Shush! Growing up Jewish Under Stalin: A Memoir  by Emil Draitser. Copyright 2008.

“This compelling memoir conveys us back to Draitser’s childhood and adolescence and provides a unique account of post-Holocaust life in Russia.  Despite the waves of anti-Jewish campaigns, which swept over the country and climaxed in the infamous “Doctors’ Plot,” we feel the Draitsers’ loving family life-lively, evocative, and rich with humor.  This intimate and unforgettable story ends with  the death of Stalin and, through the author’s anecdotes about his ancestors, presents a sweeping panorama of two centuries of Jewish history in Russia.” From the book jacket


People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks copyright 2008.


People of the Book, a novel, follows Hanna Heath, a rare book expert, as she uncovers the history of a mysterious beautifully illuminated Hebrew manuscript created in fifteenth-century Spain and recently saved from destruction during the shelling of Sarajevo’s libraries.  As she discovers a series of tiny artifacts in the book’s ancient binding;  a tiny insect wing fragment, wine stains, salt crystals, and a white hair she begins to unlock the mysteries of the book’s exciting past.


Founder of Hasidism: A Quest for the Historical Ba’al Shem Tov by Moshe Rosman copyright 2013

Rosman’s book reviews the scholarly thinking of the beginnings of Hasidism and discusses the Ba’al Shem Tov and Hasidim in the context to the historical times in Poland.




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