NEW RELEASE! The Story of the Chasam Sofer

March 22, 2018

Is your last name Sofer or Schreiber (Yiddish for “writer,” or “Sofer”)? If so, chances are you’re one of the many descendants ka”h of the famed Chasam Sofer. Even nowadays, hundreds of years after this tzaddik lived, we hear about the Chasam Sofer all the time—his divrei Torah, well-known stories about him, the mesorah he gave over to his children and talmidim. Truly he was a one-of-a-kind person, a rare gadol from whom Klal Yisrael gained enormously.

Now your children can read about this gadol in a book written especially for them! The Story of the Chasam Sofer is the third book in Rebbetzin Sarah Feldbrand’s junior biography series, Learning from our Leaders. In kid-friendly language, the Chasam Sofer’s life story is related in full detail—his miraculous birth, his childhood, his close relationship with his rebbi, Rav Nosson Adler, as well as his experiences as rav in various Jewish communities, and the hardships he endured and triumphed over.

Readers will be enthralled by the mind-boggling stories related about the Chasam Sofer in this book. If you are looking for a read that will both inspire and entertain your elementary-aged children (and you, as well!), The Story of the Chasam Sofer is for you!

Click here to purchase online.

NEW RELEASE! The Tefillin Companion

March 21, 2018

Mazel tov! Your son’s bar mitzvah is just around the corner. There’s a big bash to organize, of course, complete with booking a hall, ordering invitations, and figuring out centerpieces. And there’s the matter of making sure the bar mitzvah boy is outfitted properly: buying his new hats, his white shirts, his suit, etc. But at the top of your list, in terms of importance, is surely the brand new mitzvah your soon-to-be-adult son will now be acquiring: tefillin.

This is no small thing, mind you. For the rest of his life b’ezras Hashem, he will be putting on tefillin every single weekday—so this is a mitzvah you want to make sure your son is fully prepared for. Of course you’ve already ordered his tefillin for him, but have you given thought to the many intricate halachos that pertain to this mitzvah? How well does he know them?

That’s where the recently released book, The Tefillin Companion, comes in. It offers a clear summary of all pertinent halachos and information about tefillin, following the order of the Shulchan Aruch and written in an easy-to-read format. This sefer is an invaluable guide for both Ashkenazi and Sephardic tefillin-wearers, as it includes the laws pertaining to both sects. Questions such as the following are addressed:

* In which situations does one fast if his tefillin fell to the floor?
* May one eat, drink, or nap while wearing tefillin?
* How often should one have his tefillin checked to ascertain their kosher status?
* What constitutes a left-handed person regarding wearing the shel  yad on one’s right hand?

Endorsed by Rav Shlomo Miller shlit”a and Rav Avrohom Schorr shlit”a, this sefer should definitely be on the “To Buy” list of every parent of a bar mitzvah-aged boy!

Click here to order online.

Night Flower – Chapter 14

March 19, 2018

Israel Book Shop presents Chapter 14 of a new online serial novel, Night Flower, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week.  Click here for previous chapters.

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

The watchtower that soared to the fifth floor of Nikolai Rosenberg’s estate was designed to elegantly blend into the scene. It looked like another architectural adornment on the sprawling luxury estate. But once inside, it became apparent that it was a full-blown watchtower, with all the accoutrements: two massive screens, one transmitting images of what was happening below in real time, and one serving as a huge database of images, names, and addresses. The walls were forty centimeters thick, the windows were barred and bulletproof, and five firing loopholes were situated opposite the weak points in the wall that surrounded the house. Nikolai Rosenberg was very good at protecting his possessions and his life.

The two armed guards who regularly sat in the tower had already chased away unwelcome guests, but they greeted the blue Volga now slowing down in front of the estate with folded arms.

“It’s them,” one of the guards said, studying the screen on the wall to his right. The images of the car projected on the database screen were identical to the one now driving below. Beside the image of the vehicle were three headshots: the editor of the Segodniya newspaper, writer Vasiliy Antonovitch, and the editor’s chauffer.

“Send their pictures downstairs,” the guard on the right said. “They should check them close up. I can’t see the faces well enough from here…” He turned to the screen next to him and tried to maximize the images to the largest size possible, but the faces of the passengers were still too blurry. “It looks like them,” he finally said. “But I wouldn’t bet my life on it.” Keep Reading…

Night Flower – Chapter 13

March 12, 2018

Israel Book Shop presents Chapter 13 of a new online serial novel, Night Flower, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week.  Click here for previous chapters.

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

“You didn’t finish your compote, Rachel,” Elsie said.

Rachel wrinkled her nose. “Compote is such a hospital word,” she said. “In the dorm we don’t usually have dessert at the Friday evening meal. Anyone who wants can take cookies from the tea room, but they are the exact same cookies that we have on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wedne—”

“I got it, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday,” Elsie said patiently. “It’s really a shame that you have that all week. It’s just not healthy. So you don’t want to eat your compote?”

“No,” Rachel said. “If it would be the apples that you cook, that would be one thing, but this is just plain pineapples from a can.”

“If I would have known you were coming, I would have prepared apple compote for you, but I didn’t know you’d be here.”

“Don’t tell me the dorm mother didn’t call you.” Read the rest of this entry »

Night Flower – Chapter 12

March 5, 2018

Israel Book Shop presents Chapter 12 of a new online serial novel, Night Flower, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week.  Click here for previous chapters.

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

Chaiky’s father-in-law finished singing Shalom Aleichem, made Kiddush, and poured wine into the small cups.

Nu, uh!” her mother-in-law said as she passed the cups.

“Yisrael and Yaakov!” she scolded, after drinking her wine. “Can you stop being so wild? You’re supposed to set a good example for Dovi and Naomi, not the opposite!”

“But we’re so happy that they finally, finally came to us!” Yisrael said as soon as he’d swallowed his wine, and tickled Dovi in the ribs. Dovi giggled and stuck his hand out to get his little goblet.

“Well, that’s children for you…” Shlomo’s mother sighed as she smiled at Chaiky, who smiled in return. The happiness and energy that enveloped the children here served her quite well. It somewhat blurred her discomfort and the long silences, although she did have to make sure that her kids’ unruly behavior did not become all-out chaos.

As soon as she’d entered the somber-toned, closed-in dining room, she’d felt that familiar sensation of being stifled. She had never liked the heavy velvet curtains, tied with gold ropes; the elegantly carved bookcase that gleamed to perfection; or the two black velvet chairs in the corner of the room. When she’d first come to her in-laws’ home as a kallah, she’d mused that she and her mother-in-law just didn’t share the same taste at all, but as long as Shlomo had been at her side, it hadn’t bothered her so much. Keep Reading…

NEW RELEASE! Born to Rule

February 26, 2018

Generally, you either love historical fiction or you really dislike it. History buffs will drool over a new historical novel (the thicker and more detailed, the better!), while those seeking drama and intrigue for their reading pleasure will choose an emotion-laden, contemporary novel instead.

Born to Rule, though, crosses boundaries when it comes to book genres. Yes, it is a historical novel, taking place during the fascinating Geonic period, when Baghdad and its environs were the central location of the Jewish community. But at the same time, this is a book that throbs with emotion and drama.

We enter the lives of Surura, the spoiled only daughter of the Reish Galuta, who has everything she could want but is plagued by loneliness and unanswered questions; Osnat, Surura’s aunt, whose dreams are shattered merely hours after her wedding; and Gershon, whose journey to a distant land becomes a whole lot more perilous than he ever expected. We follow these and other characters’ lives as they intersect in spellbinding ways.

When it comes to surprising plot twists and character development—this book has definitely got it all. And the wealth of information you will gain about Jewish history, particularly during the times of Rav Saadya Gaon, will absolutely enthrall you, whether or not you ever felt drawn to this topic.

Truly, Born to Rule is a book that will find its place on the “Favorites List” of readers with all kinds of tastes!

Click here to order online.

Night Flower – Chapter 11

February 26, 2018

Israel Book Shop presents Chapter 11 of a new online serial novel, Night Flower, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week.  Click here for previous chapters.

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

“Hey, there’s someone new!” Rachel said in surprise and hurried over to the baby’s crib. She put down her large bag on the floor, skirted the intravenous pole, and leaned over the high railing, peering into the crib. “He’s cute…” she said thoughtfully. “What does he have, Elsie?”

“A serious heart problem,” Elsie the nurse said from behind a tower of folded sheets. “It’s affecting his entire development. Please open this cabinet, Rachel.”

The fourteen-year-old raised her eyes. “Is his life in danger?”

“Not at this moment—otherwise he’d be in intensive care, not here. He’s recovering from his second surgery, and we are praying that he grow up to be healthy.”

“A second surgery! Poor thing… How old is he?”

“Eight months.”

“And when he gets healthy, where will he go?”

“We’ll see,” Elsie said. “But Rachel, if you’ve already come for Shabbos, I prefer you help me with Sarit. She’s bigger and needs your attention. She actually just ran out into the hallway, and I can’t run after her all day. This little one, on the other hand, rests quietly, and I’m not sure that he even realizes what is going on around him—who is with him and who isn’t.”

Rachel gazed into the crib at the baby who lay there with closed eyes, unresponsive to her stroking. “He’s not so little,” she said quietly. “And I’m worried. When you send me from one baby to another, it’s usually because you don’t want me to get too connected to that baby, because then my heart will break if something happens to him, chalilah.” Keep Reading…