A lovely book about Tashlich that attempts to make an old tradition meaningful in an up-to-date fashion. Annie and her family have created their own tradition as they walk as a family to the creek to throw their crumbs into the water as symbols of bad actions they have taken this year. Annie leads them through the woods, stopping at rocks, bridges, and waterfalls. At the first stop on their Rosh Hashanah walk each member of the family remembers something good from the past year by writing about it with a stone. At the next they tell a sin they have done in the past year, and they then throw found objects from the woods into the stream. At the third stop they think of a promise to make for the New Year, and at the last they eat apples and honey and recite a prayer their mom has written for them. Tashlich becomes a personal ritual for each of them. This family portrait shows a family both aware of the environment and articulating their wish to improve their behavior in the coming year. The text is appropriately simple and child-centered. Explanation of the tashlich tradition is done in an-easy-tounderstand fashion. Illustrations are beautiful and fit the outdoor motifs; there is a use of fall colors throughout. Halachically observant readers will object to the family writing with stone on the holiday and then erasing their message with water. (The author does have such a disclaimer at the end of the book.) Recommended for ages 5 to 8
Shelly Feit has an M.L.S. and a Sixth-year Specialist’s Certificate in information science. She is the library director and media specialist at the Moriah School in Englewood, NJ.