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Golem by David Wisniewski
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Golem (edition 2007)

by David Wisniewski

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4995520,441 (3.91)8
Member:JessicaABaker
Title:Golem
Authors:David Wisniewski
Info:Sandpiper (2007), Paperback, 32 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:traditional tales

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Golem by David Wisniewski

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An old legend about a reverend Jew, who creates a giant from clay called Golem. The giant's sole purpose is to protect the jews from any harm. When the jews are finally free from persecution, he is laid back to where he came from.However legend say that he will rise back when needed.
  yatsogu | Aug 14, 2015 |
Spooky telling of Jewish lore from Prague, detailing the subjugation and fear of Jewish people created by a lie their enemies are spreading. Story tells of the creation/ necromancing of the Earth's clay to conjure a guardian for the Jewish people, whom they call Golem. Golem is a sensitive creature but has no souls according to the creator. Golem is eventually killed/returned to the Earth as clay despite his joy and passion for beauty of the natural world and life. A sort of Frankenstein story.
  emifoltz | Aug 13, 2015 |
The story is made more powerful by its dramatic illustrations. Some interesting similarities with Frankenstein.
  cameroneshaw | Jul 15, 2015 |
Wisniewski's spectacular cut-paper illustrations help tell the story of Golem, a shapeless monster of Jewish lore.The Jewish legend of Rabbi Judah Loew and the creature he created to save the Jews of Prague from destruction in 1580 is told in dramatic fashion.
  aartik | Jul 12, 2015 |
The book Golem with story and illustrations by David Wisniewski is a detailed story of a legend in the Jewish culture. In the note in the back of the book I found that Golem is the Hebrew word for shapeless mass. The story is indeed about a shapeless mass of clay who is brought to life to protect the Jewish people. He guards the Jewish people and grows and grows with every attack. He captures people who spread "lies" about the Jews and gives them to the authorities to incarcerate. In the end he becomes too large and violence ensues and the leaders decide to return him to the earth.

This story is very historical in nature. I am unfamiliar with the Jewish culture and found it an interesting story, but felt like I needed more information. I found the note in the back of the book to be very helpful, explaining customs and beliefs the Jewish people have. I would recommend reading that first if you are unfamiliar with Jewish practices.

The artwork is "paper-cut" illustrations in varying degrees of brown, yellow, orange, black, white and red. The depictions seem dark in nature, and give the book a wizardry/ fantasy feel.

I think this story is ideal for children of the Jewish culture and children of other cultures, in that it brings understanding of historical events, as well as a cultural legend, to life. I feel this book gives an excellent opportunity for education and understanding of Jewish people. ( )
  krich1974 | Jul 7, 2015 |
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c. 1 Brodell Family
c. 2 Cramer - Barash Family
c. 3 Michael & Debra Davis
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0395726182, Hardcover)

Golem is the Hebrew word for shapeless man. According to Jewish legend, the renowned scholar and teacher Rabbi Loew used his powers to create a Golem from clay in order to protect his people from persecution in the ghettos of 16th-century Prague. (This was the time of the Blood Lie, when hostile gentiles claimed that Jews were mixing the blood of Christian children with the flour and water of matzo.) David Wisniewski's cut-paper collage illustrations--which earned him the Caldecott Medal in 1997--are the ideal medium for portraying the stark black-and-white forces of good and evil, pride and prejudice, as well as the gray area that emerges when the tormented clay giant loses control of his anger. Echoing the tension and mood of Frankenstein, Wisniewski sends the tragic giant back to the blood red earth that birthed him. The historical note on the last page offers a broader context for the legend, ultimately comparing the creation of Golem to the emergence of Israel. (Ages 8 and older) --Gail Hudson

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:04 -0400)

A saintly rabbi miraculously brings to life a clay giant who helps him watch over the Jews of sixteenth-century Prague.

(summary from another edition)

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