Almost a Minyan

Lori S. Kline; Susan Simon, illus.

  • Review
By – March 24, 2017

In this ten­der sto­ry of love and loss, a young girl looks for­ward to when she will be old enough to be count­ed among a minyan, a rit­u­al her father observes every day. One morn­ing the father sur­pris­es his daugh­ter by invit­ing her to accom­pa­ny him to the syn­a­gogue for minyan. Accord­ing to her Hebrew birth­day, he tells her, she is now con­sid­ered an adult. As her father helps her put on her grandfather’s tallis and tefill­in for the first time, she feels his love. Such a touch­ing sto­ry would have been even more effec­tive if writ­ten in sim­ple prose rather than in often forced rhymes. The author, who reg­u­lar­ly attends minyan at her own syn­a­gogue, has includ­ed a glos­sary for the Yid­dish and Hebrew words.

Simon’s illus­tra­tions depict a live­ly and lov­ing fam­i­ly and a sup­port­ive and diverse con­gre­ga­tion that exudes warmth and caring.

Susan Kan­tor was a senior writer/​editor for Girl Scouts of the USA, a chil­dren’s book edi­tor, and a past judge for the Nation­al Jew­ish Book Awards in the illus­trat­ed children’s book cat­e­go­ry. She is a writer and a docent at the Rubin Muse­um in New York City, where she leads pub­lic and pri­vate tours.

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