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A Sound to Remember by Sonia Levitin
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A Sound to Remember

by Sonia Levitin

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The next few days I will review the books the library I work at has for children related to Yom Kippur. Let me start with my favorite, Sonia Levitin's A sound to remember. The story is set in an undefined shtetl in Eastern Europe. There a Jacov, a "fine boy, but slow of speech and a bit clumsy" receives the honor of blowing the shofar at High Holy Days from the wise and kind rabbi. The village is upset and some a bit outraged, that the honor did not go to a deserving elder or a more capable youngster. But they trust their rabbi. Comes Rosh Hashanah and the shofar blowing seems to be a disaster. The first sounds came in low and trembling, but the last ones were replaced by screeching silence. The villagers feel cheated. I do not want to ruin the end for you, so I will not share how the Rabbi and Jacov corrected the problem by Yom Kippur, but they did in a (for me) surprising way.
This very ending and the communal spirit/solution that it evoked was the main reason I liked this book so much. The other was Gabriel Lisowski's warm pencil drawings that depicted a simple, but more focused life than what we have now. The text itself would take up less than a dozen pages, but with the images the book ended up being 32. Why not borrow it and read it to your child before Yom Kippur this year, to teach them about the honor of blowing the shofar, that value can reside behind unassuming exterior too and about the strength of community.
  break | Oct 2, 2008 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0152772480, Library Binding)

Jacov, a slow boy, is given the special honor of "blowing the shofar (ram's horn)" on the Jewish high holy days.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:16:53 -0400)

Jacov, a slow boy, is given the special honor of "blowing the shofar (ram's horn)" on the Jewish high holy days.

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