Friday, January 21st 2022   |

Books

OP-ED: Stan Lee gave comic books permission to be more Jewish

By ARIE KAPLAN

(JTA) — When Stan Lee died on Nov. 12 at 95, he left behind a vast legacy. Between 1961 and 1969, his greatest sustained burst of creative activity, he co-created a vast array of iconic characters, including Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, the X-Men, the Avengers, the Incredible Hulk, Thor, Iron Man, Black Panther, Daredevil, Nick Fury, Doctor Strange and Falcon.

Lee raised the bar for superhero storytelling....

In J.K. Rowling’s new novel, a villain is an Israel-hating anti-Semite

By YVETTE ALT MILLER

(JTA) — For months author J.K. Rowling has been warning about the dangers of anti-Semitism in England, sparring on Twitter with critics who either downplay the phenomenon or say its proponents are confusing criticism of Israel with Jew hatred.

Now, in her newest book, she includes a character whose obsessive anti-Zionism morphs into anti-Semitism.

“Lethal White,” the fourth series in Rowling’s Cormoran Strike mystery series, written...

‘Israel Bible’: Tanakh connects text to the land of Israel

Reviwed by JASON GAINES, Ph.D.,

“The Israel Bible“edited by Rabbi Tuly Weisz. Jerusalem: Menorah Books, 2018. 2190 p.

“The Israel Bible” advertises itself as the first Tanakh, or Hebrew Bible, “to highlight the special connection between the Land and the People of Israel.” It succeeds in this goal, with commentary and illustrations that call helpful attention to the interdependence between the Jewish people, their sacred texts, and Israel both ancient...

Philip Roth, enfant terrible turned peerless chronicler of American Jewish life, is dead at 85

 

(JTA) — Philip Roth, whose notorious novels about the sex drives of American men gave way to some of the most probing examinations of the American Jewish condition in the 20th and 21st centuries, has died.

He was 85. His death was confirmed to The New York Times by his friend, Judith Thurman.

Early in his career, Roth drew outrage with sometimes stinging depictions of Jewish life, as well...

Store that sells ‘P is for Palestine’ children’s book faces more heat — from the left

By BEN SALES

NEW YORK (JTA) — Book Culture, a chain of independent New York City bookstores, just can’t win.

First it promoted a children’s book about Palestine that praised intifada. That angered members of the Jewish community, so Book Culture apologized, condemned violence against Israelis and declared its support for Israel’s right to exist.

Now the apology has angered pro-Palestinian activists, who are pledging to boycott Book Culture unless it...

‘Lioness’ author Frances Klagsbrun receives Jewish Book of the Year Award

Author Frances Klagsbrun, who spoke at the Uptown Jewish Community last night, got good news in addition to a nice New Orleans audience to welcome her. Her book “Lioness: Golda Meir and the Nation of Israel” was just selected this morning as the Everett Family Foundation Jewish Book of the Year by the Jewish Book Council (JBC).

The award is considered the most prestigious in the field of Jewish literature...

Eight books for Chanukah — or anytime

By VICTOR WISHNA

(JTA) — When Chanukah comes, it hangs around for more than a week. That means plenty of gifts to give, as well as ample time for procrastinators.

For your favorite Person of the Book, you can’t go too wrong with giving, uh, a book. We have eight of them here, from the culinary to the cartoonish (in a good way), with a few gripping novels and too-crazy-not-to-be-true...

9 Jewish books to read this summer

By VICTOR WISHNA

(JTA) — Sure, winter might seem like the ideal time of year for curling up with a good book — but summer is when you might actually have time to read.

So before these warm months all too swiftly fade to fall, here are some Jewish-themed titles, from a wide range of genres, to fill your beach bag (or tablet) for the season.

A bonus: These works, from...

Al Franken learned about justice from his childhood rabbi

By CURT SCHLEIER

(JTA) — In February 2015, Sen. Jim Inhofe carried a snowball on to the floor of the Senate to prove global warming did not exist.

Everyone knows “it is very, very cold outside,” the Oklahoma Republican said. “Unseasonable.”

That, said Al Franken, gave him an idea.

“I thought about coming into the chamber with a snowball and just packing it very tight the way we do in...

Review: ‘Lashon Hakodesh History, Holiness & Hebrew’

By ALEXA DAYAN

“Lashon HaKodesh History, Holiness, and Hebrew” examines the Hebrew language as well as its history to bring forth a greater understanding and appreciation of the language. From a historical perspective, this book examines what languages were spoken during different time periods in the Bible and how the modern Hebrew language evolved. Klein’s analysis provides passion that truly distinguishes the Hebrew language from any other ancient or spoken...