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Golem by Mark Podwal
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Golem (1995)

by Mark Podwal

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It is interesting to me that the illustrations appear to be draw with mud and colored clays. It correlates with the title of the book - A Golem made with Mud. This folklore tale plays on the greediness of an emperor and his desire to turn iron into gold. It is a Jewish folklore with alchemists, wizards, and magicians. A rabbi wanted to prevent the burning of holy books because it angered the emperor that the secret was no hidden among them. The emperor neglected the city of Prague and the Jews were forced to live in ghettos. There are a lot of descriptive words that tell the story. "In its rage the golem grew larger and larger. Flames shot from its eyes and streaked across the sky. The terrified crowd ran in all directions." These words paint a vivid image in the readers head. There is a menorah in one of the illustrations even though the text does not mention it at all. The golem wore the emperor's palace on top of its head like a crown. This perhaps was my favorite page. The city is drawn in the shape of a crown and now the golem is King.
"A few years afterward the emperor died, One day after the death of his pet lion." This line confused me because a pet lion was not mentioned at all. Also the term "flower's fragence was the Angel of Death.

The last few pages..."& so today a golem might be anywhere.. or everywhere waiting to be brought back to life... or perhaps all that remains are the stories." Brings the folklore full circle as a story being told out loud. ( )
  mskathyphan | Oct 18, 2018 |
This traditional Jewish tale recounts the fabled origins of the Golem, a monstrous being created from a mixture of mud and magic, and its disastrous reign through Prague. The mystical overtones which stems from the presence of religious artifacts and European alchemy highlights the dangers of tempting powers beyond human control. A gouache and ink combination make up the soft and colorful illustrations which are the real highlights of the book. ( )
  edeidrich | Oct 8, 2012 |
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For Claudia
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A long time ago, in the city of Prague, there lived an emperor who believed in all kinds of magic.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 068813811X, Hardcover)

In Prague a long time ago, there lived an emperor who believed in magic, and a rabbi who, it is said, could perform miracles. The emperor presented the rabbi with an antique spoon, but neither of them could foretell how the rabbi would one day use it. Full-color.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:34 -0400)

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