Culture Shock by C. Rosenberg

Culture Shock by C. Rosenberg is the tale of two friends, Yemima and Gittel who meet in Eretz Yisrael, after each flees the country of her birth.

FCulture shock by C Rosenberg coverrom the book’s publisher:

When the very heartbeat of life turns unfamiliarly hazy and gray, how does one distinguish between what is right, what is wrong, and what is simply “different”?  In the seething political cauldron of Eretz Yisrael post-1948, religious individuals struggle against the winds of the time and culture shocks they are not prepared for. …

Gittel: The daughter of a staunch Yerushalmi family who already suffered the loss of two sons – one to death and the other to patriotism – searches for acceptance among her peers in a setting where modern customs seem to have penetrated even the most guarded of enclaves. …

Tzachi: Having broken off contact with his family years ago, he’s overcome by pangs of homesickness and longing for his old home. Will he forever remain trapped in the shadows of his slain brother? …

Ezra: Interned in a transit camp in Yemen and then airlifted with his family to Eretz Yisrael during Operation Magic Carpet, he’s caught in the storm blowing across the land he has waited so long to call home. …

Yemima: An unusually bright, sensitive, and perceptive girl, she’s endured much suffering in her young life. Will she ever be given the chance to spread her own wings and begin anew in Eretz Yisrael, or does the instability of the times dictate a different reality?

Sounds like a heartwarming novel about a fascinating, turbulent era in our history.

From Israel Bookshop Publications.

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Midnight Music by Menucha Chana Levin

Midnight Music is the new teen novel by Menucha Chana Levin.

This is her fifth novel and she’s been published in Hamodia, Chabad.org, Aish.com and other Jewish media outlets.

Midnight Music cover by Menucha Chana LevinMidnight Music first appeared as a serialized story in Binah Bunch Magazine.

From the back cover:

Tehilla Sherman was perfectly happy living in her comfortable old house in a small New Jersey town, attending the school run by her parents. Then, to everyone’s shock, the school has to close down due to lack of funds and her parents need to find new jobs.

At the end of the summer, Tehilla has to adjust to a very different lifestyle in a high-rise apartment in Brighton Beach, New York. There, she meets Galia, a girl originally from Russia, who is just starting to discover her Jewish heritage. Both Tehilla and Galia find themselves being challenged by new experiences. Can their mutual love of music help them to build a true friendship?

Published by Israel Bookshop Publications.

Purchase now from Amazon.com

Menucha Chana Levin is also the author of:

the castle builders by menucha chana levin the youngest bride by menucha chana levin A Family for Frayda by Menucha Chana Levin

Beyond Nut Cake: Pesach Desserts by Ronit Peskin

Beyond Nut Cake: Delectable and Different Pesach  Desserts for Chassidishe Minhagim by Ronit Peskin is an e-book determined to put to rest the misconception that the only possible non-gebrokts Pesach dessert is nut cake.

Beyond Nut Cake Pesach Desserts by Ronit Peskin coverArmed with only peel-able fruit and vegetables, nuts that can be shelled at home (including coconut), salt, eggs, wine, and sugar syrup, Ronit Peskin concocted over twenty-five desserts, ranging from flans to ice creams, from banana fritters to crepes, and even a recipe for how to make your own marzipan.

The recipes are all non-dairy, gluten-free, and suitable for people who have all kinds of dietary restrictions.

For those who don’t know Ronit, she’s the force behind Penniless Parenting, a frugal parenting blog taglined: “A Rich Life on a Minimum Wage.”

She’s undaunted at the prospect of making almost anything at home, and this shows in this short e-book, where she starts off with the basics.  How to make sugar syrup is pretty self-explanatory.  But had I ever even considered making my own potato starch? Not. Somehow, she makes it seem likely that I actually might try one day.

Instructions for nut milks and nut butters follow, before we get to the desserts.  I don’t believe a meal – any meal – qualifies for the term unless it includes dessert, so of course this was one book that spoke to my heart… or at least my stomach.

I’ve never tried flan with coconut cream, nor lemon curd with oranges instead, so our Pesach desserts are going to have some delectable new twists this year!

Ronit Peskin also leads foraging hikes, on which she teaches which plants in the greater Yerushalayim area can be used for food, which have first aid and medicinal properties, and which ones are poisonous. (A fascinating and  educational family Chol Hamoed outing, by the way!)   For more, check out foragingisrael.com.

Self-published.

We received a review copy.

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How Free Will Works by Dovid Lieberman

The quality of our lives comes down to the quality of our choices. That’s the bottom line that prompted How Free Will Works: The Blueprints to Take Charge of Your Life, Health and Happiness, by Dovid Lieberman.

How Free Will Works by David LiebermanDr. Lieberman is a psychologist, with many other books to his belt.

This is not just a philosophical work. The book doesn’t try to prove the existence of free will – it assumes that, within certain parameters, there is always a responsible choice to be made, and goes from there.

As the subtitle indicates, this is what many would probably call a self-help book. Dr. Lieberman takes readers through practical steps to help them actualize their potential.

From the back cover:

Drawn from classic sources, How Free Will Works explores the elegant relationship between Divine providence and free will — and illuminates the connections among themes such as: miracles, mazal, happiness, cause and effect, Heavenly decree, nature, success, tikun, self-esteem, destiny, teshuvah, prayer, mental illness, anxiety, mitzvos, emunah and bitachon, suffering, fear, pleasure, anger, and will power.

How Free Will Works sheds fascinating light on the cosmic network of interlacing forces that operate in creation — such as Divine providence, mazal, and prayer — and reveals the power and parameters assigned to each.

More valuable still, this groundbreaking achievement explains how free will intersects with, and impacts on, these forces — which give us the practical and near-magical ability to maximize opportunities,sidestep unnecessary hardship and heartache, and transform our emotional, spiritual, and physical health.

As the dazzling design and sweeping influence of free will emerges, we move in a world that offers us a different experience. and it will become increasingly difficult — if not inconceivable — for us to ignore the one truth that will become so patently obvious: we control the quality of our lives.

This is a book that has enormous potential to improve people’s lives in a very meaningful way. It shows readers ways to find fulfillment, to engage in life, to reignite their purpose, no at matter what stage in life they may find themselves, by reconnecting with their neshamah.

Dr. Lieberman was interviewed about his sefer on the OU’s Savitsky Talks podcasts. You can listen to it here.

Published by Feldheim.

Purchase now from Amazon.com

Dr. Lieberman is also the author of 10 previous books, which have been translated into 26 languages and include two New York Times bestsellers. Among them:

Real Power by David Lieberman

 

 

 

 

 

Get anyone to do anything book cover by David Lieberman

Searching by Rochel Istrin

Searching by Rochel Istrin is a beautiful novel that deserves a second life. This gripping tale follows the story of a young mother and that of the family from which she is cruelly torn apart.

Searching by Rochel IstrinHere’s an excerpt from from the back cover copy:

Young and feisty Zelda must escape to far-off America when anti-Semitic villagers accuse her of espionage. She must leave behind her two small children, Yosseleh and Ruchka, her violinist husband Leizer – and life as she’s known it.

Dramatic enough right there, but then World War II intervenes and makes it impossible for Zelda’s family to join her in America.

After surviving in the forest with the partisans, Leizer finds himself on a freight train bound for Siberia – alone.

When the war ends, Zelda goes back to Europe, determine to find out what happened to her husband and children.

Will the family ever be whole again? Will Zelda ever be able to rebuild the tattered relationship with the child she left behind so young? Will Zelda and Leizer find each other once more?

This isn’t a long book, but is a suspenseful one. It’s also clearly well researched. Many Holocaust novels strive for some hope through contrived happy endings that are oh, so predictable. This isn’t one them. There’s hope here, and happiness, too, to be found among the tears, but they don’t come easy nor the way one would expect them.

Searching was Rochel Istrin’s first novel. Unfortunately for her, it was released just as her first publisher was closing and it never got the distribution and publicity this book deserved. So let’s try to make up for that now by giving this one a second shot and spreading the word. It’s a short book that’s worth the read.

Published by Targum.

We received a review copy of this book.

Purchase here now from Amazon.com.

Rochel Istrin is also the author of:

Hidden by Rochel Istrin