Leslie Kimmelman and Irina Avgustinovich tell the story of Adam and Eve — but this time, the tale is recounted from Eve’s point of view as she encounters God’s creations for the first time. She names the animals and all natural phenomena with her own creative touch and encourages Adam to do the same. She keeps him calm and reassures him with optimism when they experience their first frightening sunset and nightfall, when they are unsure whether there will be a second day of light. Eve’s determination to face the future with hope will inspire readers.
The magnificent color illustrations show the Garden of Eden in all its lush and lavish abundance. There is no snake in this garden — just the beauty of new experiences and an appreciation of the world’s awe-inspiring wonder.
An author’s note to this modern midrash teaches young readers that while new things can be scary and uncomfortable, having faith in “yourself, in the people around you, or in God” can help you cope with life’s challenges and uncertainties, and give you the confidence to anticipate what tomorrow may bring.
Michal Hoschander Malen is the editor of Jewish Book Council’s young adult and children’s book reviews. A former librarian, she has lectured on topics relating to literacy, run book clubs, and loves to read aloud to her grandchildren.