Have you ever heard of Queen Vashti? When we think of Purim and listen to the Megillah (Book of Esther) we are moved by Queen Esther’s bravery in her quest to save the Jewish people. In this imaginative, fun, and rhyming picture book, we follow the other queen from the Purim story: Queen Vashti. The only thing that the Megillah tells us about Queen Vashti is that she refused to come when the king commanded. This book is a modern take on a midrash, the tradition of bringing new interpretations to traditional texts. Midrash creates backstories for biblical characters, fills in logical gaps in the plotline, and explains unlikely turns of events.
Our committee loved this book’s message of a woman standing up for herself and her friends. Queen Vashti is wearing her comfy pants and hanging out with her friends, but when the king wants her to dress up to entertain his friends, Vashti is not amused. She and her friends tell the king, “We’re happy here, and we won’t go. We are not in the mood to dance, for we are in our comfy pants!” It can be hard to say “no” to people, especially those closest to us. Queen Vashti’s Comfy Pants is an inspiring tale of speaking up and making yourself heard.
February 23, 2021