Why We Chose This Book: Jonah


One might expect to receive a lot of Bible tales from PJ Library. After all, this is a program that focuses on Jewish stories - and what holds more Jewish stories than the Torah, the first five books of the Bible? But it turns out that many Torah stories aren't ideal for young kids. That's why the Book Selection Committee is especially pleased when we come across a book that presents a Torah story in an age-appropriate way, such as Jonah by Tammar Stein. This book, published by our own PJ Publishing, isn't a twist on the original. It's a fairly straight-ahead version of the classic story of Jonah that's read aloud in synagogue every Yom Kippur but told in a way that even very young kids will be able to understand its timeless morals: we can't run away from our responsibilities; everyone deserves second chances; and the inside of a whale is a very stinky place. Sabina Hahn's gentle illustration style is a perfect match for the child-friendly text. The Book Selection Committee hopes families will enjoy reading this brand-new retelling of an age-old story as much as we did.