Category: Book Reviews

A fun Haggadah even for the non-observant Jew

                                                            The Dry Bones Passover Haggadah[1]         The Passover meal called Seder, meaning “order” and referring to the sequence of fifteen practices during the meal, is […]

A book that describes Passover laws and practices

There are many laws that the rabbi developed associated with what is called today “the holiday of Passover,” which were developed for the most part from the simple Torah mandate that no unleavened product may be in the home during the seven-day holiday of the “Feast of the Unleavened Bread.” But things are not what […]

This is how one should understand the Bible

Rabbi Hayyim Angel, author of “Keys to the Palace: Exploring the religious Value of reading Tanakh,” is one of my favorite authors who write on the Bible. He is very popular with other readers and scholars as well. This book contains twenty essays and virtually all were accepted by and published previously by well-respected magazines. […]

Rabbi Soloveitchik’s view of Esther

Megillat Esther Mesorat Harav By Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik   Many books have been published which are commentaries on various subjects, including the Bible, Siddur, and Haggadah, which are based on teachings of Rabbi Soloveitchik. These books were not written by the rabbi. They are collections of his sayings that the authors of the books […]

Extracts From Adam’s Diary

“Extracts from Adam’s Diary,” published by Mark Twain in 1893 before “Eve’s Diary” in 1905, is not as charming, humorous, and unforgettable as “Eve’s Diary,” perhaps because he was not moved when he wrote “Extracts” by his wife’s death in 1904 as he was when he composed “Eve.” For “Eve” reminded him of her, the […]

A wonderful sentimental book that prompts us to think

Eve’s Diary By Mark Twain   Scholars say that a year after Mark Twain’s wife Olivia (1870-1904) died, in 1905, Twain published his charming tale called “Eve’s Diary” with her and her feminist beliefs in mind. In the first two chapters of his book on philosophy, “Guide of the Perplexed,” Maimonides, Judaism’s greatest thinker, read […]

Should Jews study secular subjects?

There are two broad approaches to Orthodox Judaism, each taking an opposite view as to what Judaism requires. Each feeling certain they know what God wants them to do. Modern Orthodox Judaism is convinced that Jews must learn secular knowledge. It is as Maimonides, Judaism’s greatest thinker taught, “the truth is the truth no matter […]

Orthodox Judaism is changing

Professor Chaim Waxman, a prominent and highly respected sociologist of contemporary Orthodoxy, has made a superb assessment of the history, development, and current and future situation of Orthodoxy in his relatively short but comprehensive 178-page book, “Social Change and Halakhic Evolution in American Orthodoxy,” with 48 additional pages of bibliography and index. Readers will receive […]

A new siddur with Rav Kook’s commentary

Koren Press, a prestigious publishing house, has published “The Koren Rav Kook Siddur.” Rabbi Abraham Isaac haKohen Kook (1865–1935) was the first Ashkenazi chief rabbi of the British Mandate for Palestine He was the founder of the Religious Zionist Yeshiva Merkaz HaRav. He was a Torah scholar, a decider of halakha (Jewish law), a mystical […]

God’s Command: Exercise

Michael Kaufman’s “Am I My Body’s Keeper?” is an important lifesaving book. He states that the Bible tells people to exercise and do other acts to assure their health. God did not create humans to sit and deteriorate. The book is easy to read. It focuses on the Jewish view toward taking care of our […]

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