Due to the popularity of e-books, major
Chicago bookstore chains have swung many of their doors shut. Local shops, like
Rosenblum's World of Judaica in Evanston, have yet to turn off their lights, but
still feel the impact of the growing digital library.
disturbing," said Rosenblum's owner Avi Fox. "People need to be sensitive to the
fact that if they don't go to the Jewish bookstores that provide extraordinarily
important services in the community, when they want to go buy a Jewish book at a
local Jewish bookstore, there won't be any to go to."
Fox explained that
when it comes to the High Holidays, not only are actual prayer books in high
demand, but also supplementary reads to "inspire and give insight into the
themes of the holidays."
And browsing through the shelves, according to
Fox, is just as valuable as indulging in a book itself. "You can't have a real
book-buying experience by going online," he said.
So, in the spirit of
bringing back the traditional paperback book to be passed down from generation
to generation, l'dor v'dor, here's a guide of reads to enliven your
High Holidays- whether you're sitting in a service or your living room.
Rosh Hashanah Readings: Inspiration, Information,
and Contemplation and Yom Kippur Readings: Inspiration,
Information, and Contemplation
Dov Peretz Elkins, Ed.
To add spiritual depth and meaning to both the Jewish New
Year and the Day of Atonement, this commentary fosters a personal understanding
of what makes the High Holidays so holy. The collection of writings and prayers
drawing from a variety of sources- ancient, medieval, Jewish, even
non-Jewish-allows readers to experience the spirit of the holidays on an
God In Search of Man: A Philosophy
Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel (Farrar, Straus and
Heschel discusses not man's search for God, but rather God's
search for man, questioning the idea of a Chosen People and the very nature of
Biblical thought- and how ideas transform into beliefs.
All These Vows: Kol Nidre
Rabbi Lawrence A.
Hoffman (Jewish Lights)
This book examines the essence of Kol
Nidre by tracing the prayer's history, detailing various attempts to revise
it-and even erase it altogether! A diverse group of scholars, poets, and artists
contribute to this exploration of why Kol Nidre remains a highlight for
worshipers in the High Holiday season.
World: Universalism, Particularism, and the High Holy Days (Prayers of
Rabbi Lawrence A. Hoffman, Ed. (Jewish Lights)
Assembling the insights of over 40 scholars, rabbis, and artists from all
over the globe, All The World sparks a dialogue on what the High
Holidays reveal about the principles of universality and particularity in
Judaism and Jewish stories.
Repentance: The Meaning
and Practice of Teshuvah
Louis E. Newman (Jewish
By examining Judaism's core teaching of repentance, this book
investigates the meaning of teshuvah from both its practical and
Change & Renewal: The
Essence of the Jewish Holidays & Days of Remembrance
Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz (Maggid)
Take a deeper look into the essence of
the Jewish calendar to find entirely new meanings of the Jewish holidays, with a
highlight on the significance of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.
Gates of Repentance:
The New Union Prayerbook for the Days
Chaim Stern, Ed. (Central Conference of American
This unique machzor of the Reform Movement is filled
with readings, meditations, and songs for the High Holidays using modern,
Worship of the Heart:
Essays on Jewish Prayer
Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik (KTAV
Publishing House, Inc.)
This rich collection of Rabbi Soloveitchik's
commentaries on prayers such as the Amidah, the Shema and
other biblical texts analyzes the Jewish tradition of prayer and its development
from halacha (Jewish law) to modern Jewish practice. n
To discover more Jewish titles, visit Rosenblum's World of Judaica
(www.alljudaica.com), Hamakor Galley (www.jewishsource.com), or the Spertus Shop