The Black Sheep – Chapter 10

December 21, 2020

Israel Book Shop presents Chapter 10 of a new online serial novel, The Black Sheep, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week.  Click here for previous chapters.

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

“Ariella! So good to see you! You haven’t been here for two days already!”

“That’s right,” Ariella said tonelessly. “It’s fine—you seem to have managed without me.”

“Should I make you a tea? You’re very hoarse again.”

Her sister looked at her gratefully. “Yes, thanks,” she said quietly, and sank into a chair in the kitchen, exhausted. “I’m thinking about going away.”

“Going away? Where to?” Lakey hung the milchig dishtowel on the hook.

“I don’t know.”

“Will you take me with you?” Lakey asked mischievously. “Sounds like a magical place, this ‘I don’t know.’”

“You have school.”

“And you have work.”

“My students can wait a bit,” Ariella said dismissively.

“That’s not exactly true,” Lakey said. “You teach about six girls a day, five days a week. So out of all of those, there aren’t some who have tests coming up? Accordion is one thing; you can always leave them some instructions about what to practice when you’re not here. But math?”

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December 16, 2020


“All of my kids loved this book, from my 3rd grader up to my 9th grader!”

“My son could not put this book down!”

This is some of the feedback we’ve been hearing from parents whose kids have read Framed! Or perhaps “gobbled up” would be a better way of putting it!

There’s something unusual about this book. It’s a top-notch, spine-tingling, bona fide thriller novel, yet there are no phones (certainly no cell phones!), cars, or planes anywhere in the plot. That’s because the story takes place in long-ago Eastern Europe, when fervently religious but illiterate peasants were mainstays at Jewish-owned taverns, and Catholic priests were often conniving, insincere individuals who wanted nothing more but to harm the Jews…and line their pockets with money.

Against this historical backdrop, skilled author Chayele Kohane weaves a dramatic plot that will keep your tweens and teens on their toes, from the first page until the very last. This is a most wholesome novel, and it contains plenty of wonderful lessons as well. But at the same time, there’s no skimping on the fun and suspense with this book!

Read Framed! for yourself (adults have loved it too!), and you’ll see just what we mean!


Click here to purchase online.

The Black Sheep – Chapter 9

December 14, 2020

Israel Book Shop presents Chapter 9 of a new online serial novel, The Black Sheep, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week.  Click here for previous chapters.

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 


I sat on the floor of the carpentry shop and examined the carvings in the wood. With half an ear, I heard Reb Elazar speaking. He has a regular seder, I see. He starts with the parshah already on Wednesday evening, and he has two additional shiurim on the parshah, on Thursday and on Friday afternoon. Sometimes, he gives it in the carpentry shop; other times it can be in the back kitchen, or even on the beachfront.

He happens to be a very interesting speaker, and despite the ugly hole I had mistakenly made with the machine in the middle of the word ‘V’achalta,’ his words swirled around me and apparently also found an entry point to my head.

“I really enjoyed that midrash about Yaakov Avinu,” I told him afterward. “I wonder if my father knows this midrash. He likes to tell us lots of midrashim at the Shabbos table.”

“Tell him, and you’ll find out if he knows it.”

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NEW RELEASE: Middos Man – Vol. 6

December 8, 2020

MiddC584os Man – Vol. 6

There’s nothing like being pulled frantically in four different directions, all at the same time, to make you feel like you’ve earned your stripes in mommy-hood.

The first kvetch isn’t so bad: “Mo-o-m-m-m-y-y! I’m hungry! I want something to eat, NOW!!” Then comes the plaintive call from the bathroom: “Mommy, could you help me?” This is followed by the telltale signs of a fight in progress—slap, pinch, bang—and then, “Mommy! He hit me!” and, “She started it! She took away my ball!” (Of course that’s usually just about when the phone will decide to ring, the doorbell will chime, and your pot of soup on the stove will boil over—but that’s all besides the point.)

What should you do first?!

As the cries and calls escalate in their intensity, you throw your hands up in frustration and ask, “Can’t all you kids just have a little bit of PATIENCE?!

But you know, patience is not just something that’s helpful to mothers. Patience is actually an important middah that everyone—not just kids—needs to acquire and demonstrate in many situations in life. Of course the best place to start is by teaching it to our children when they’re young.

And what better way to do that than with good ‘ol MiddosMan???

Join MiddosMan on yet another adventure to combat Mr. Yetzer Hara—this time while teaching kids how to have patience. The read-along CD makes the experience even more entertaining for kids, while the fun illustrations and exciting details (check out MiddosMan’s awesome fly shoes!) make the story come alive!

If your kid is one of MiddosMan’s many fans, this is the best gift you can give him. And if he hasn’t met MiddosMan yet—well, what are you waiting for??? (This is not the time to have patience!)

Click here to purchase online.

The Black Sheep – Chapter 8

December 7, 2020

Israel Book Shop presents Chapter 8 of a new online serial novel, The Black Sheep, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week.  Click here for previous chapters.

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

The wheels of the accordion cart protested as Ariella wheeled it down the street; they were not enjoying the overuse after a long hiatus. Ariella tugged the cart behind her, deliberating whether to go into the hardware store to buy something to oil them with, or if she should leave the errand for the way home from Zahava’s house.

She glanced at her watch. No, she’d better wait for the way back. Zahava’s little students were waiting. They had made up for ten o’clock a.m., and now it was two minutes past ten…

“Good morning, Ariella.”

“Good morning, Morah,” Ariella said, not looking at her watch anymore, although Morah Mayer’s voice gave her an urge to glance at it again. It was a reminder of those days when the teacher would stand at the gate of the school to greet the latecomers.

“How are you, Ariella?”

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NEW RELEASE: Exploring the Wonders of the Human Anatomy

November 30, 2020

LA191Exploring the Wonders of the Human Anatomy

Did you also grow up thinking that those white spots on your fingernails were caused by a lack of calcium, since you didn’t drink enough milk? Or that eating carrots will improve your eyesight? Or that if you swallowed a watermelon seed, you’d grow a watermelon inside you?

Okay, that last one I’m sure you outgrew by the time you were six, but those other long-believed myths? Many adults haven’t outgrown them and still think they are true!

That’s why it’s so important to make sure your kids read Exploring the Wonders of the Human Anatomy, the latest book in the Jewish World of Wonders series, by Efraim Harari. Okay, it’s not the only reason why they should read this book—far from it! The main reason is: they will absolutely love, love, LOVE it, and will be kept busy reading it for hours at a time. The book is chock-full of all kinds of fascinating information about our amazing body, with full-color photos and adorable illustrations, not to mention informative diagrams and fun-facts, hilarious jokes, and so much more, all written from a Torah perspective. Readers will learn about the various systems in the body, the specific role each organ and body part plays, and how everything functions so harmoniously together—true nissim and nifla’os ha’Borei.

For a gift this Chanukah that will entertain your kids as well as truly educate and inform them in Torah-true fashion, Exploring the Wonders of the Human Anatomy is the answer.

Oh, and the REAL reason for white spots on fingernails? Check out page 81 for that!

Click here to purchase online.

The Black Sheep – Chapter 7

November 30, 2020

Israel Book Shop presents Chapter 7 of a new online serial novel, The Black Sheep, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week.  Click here for previous chapters.

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

The story of the black sheep was about a prince who had been sent into exile because of his misbehavior—so contrary to the rest of his refined and cultured family members—and thought he had been forgotten there forever. Because he was so unruly, he never bothered to read the letters from his father, the king. Osher’s preschool teacher had told the class the parable in kindergarten, and Osher had returned home fascinated by the story of the prince who was the black sheep of his family.

Reb Elazar and his son, Nechemia, who was home from yeshivah for Shabbos, listened to Osher’s account with interest.

“One boy asked the teacher if the mischievous prince would stand on the benches during circle time and jump onto the floor, ‘like Osher does.’ The kids all laughed, and the teacher told the boy that we don’t talk that way, but it didn’t help. And when my sister Ariella came to pick me up at the end of the day, I told her everything, and she went over to that boy and told him that when she was little, she also jumped off the chairs in her kindergarten class. But the girls didn’t make fun of her, because it’s not a nice thing to do.” Osher didn’t know that he was the first one of the boys to be doing this kind of “session” in the Reinesses’ private kitchen. The Friday night seudah was long over, and only he had gone up to help Reb Elazar and his son organize the refrigerator so that everything could fit back in.

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NEW RELEASE: Me First Manny

November 26, 2020


Me First Manny

Observe any preschool class (and often older classes as well…) during “line-up,” and you’ll see the same thing: kids running to be FIRST on line. What is it about being FIRST that’s so great?? I guess you’d have to be a kid to answer that question… But as adults, what we do know is that this “I’m first!” business often gets out of hand. I mean, what about those poor kids who happen to sit at the back of the classroom and can’t race to the front as fast as their other classmates? Are they doomed to always go to recess/get their snack/leave the room last? Not to mention the arguments these “I’m first!” kids always seem to engender with each other (because, after all, how many “I’m first!” kids can actually be the first?!)…

If you’re one of the many exasperated parents or teachers out there who are looking for a solution to this problem, look no further than Me First Manny, an absolutely adorable children’s book by Sari Grunwald and Shuli Marmorstein. Following the smashing success of their first book, Manny in a Pickle, this author/illustrator duo set out to create a book that would show kids just how ridiculous it is to always insist on being first for everything. In Me First Manny, the beloved Manny character takes his “Me-First” tendency a bit TOO far…to the amusement and delight of all readers of this book!

Kids will love reading this book and poring over the detailed illustrations, over and over again, and best of all, the message that, “It’s NOT the worst, if you are in the middle, and someone else is first” will really resonate with them. Hopefully, you’ll begin seeing the positive results of that quite soon!

Click here to purchase online.


NEW RELEASE: Hide & Seek

November 25, 2020

LA195Hide & Seek

When you have one kid reading a book over another kid’s shoulder, because Kid 1 simply cannot wait for Kid 2 to finish the book before reading it herself…you know you have a GREAT book on your hands.

When a book can so thoroughly entertain a bunch of bored tweens on a long winter’s evening, that you hardly hear anything from them for hours on end…you know there’s something extra special about the book.

When this book becomes THE talked-about subject among said tweens and their friends for the next few days…you know you’ve got to let the public know about this amazing product!

Folks, let me introduce you to Hide & Seek, a novel for teens and tweens by popular author Brachah Rosman. Here’s a book that’s got every element that kids love in it: suspense, adventure, scariness, unexpected plot twists, and finally, a happy ending. Of course, the book has lots of wonderful, Torah-true messages woven through it as well—but those sink into the readers’ minds subconsciously, without the readers even realizing it, as they are too busy trying to figure out what will happen next to pay close attention to anything else.

So, if you’re looking to give your child (or yourself—we’ve gotten so much enthusiastic feedback about this book from adults, too!) a really fantastic gift, go ahead and buy a copy of Hide & Seek. Trust me, this is a purchase you won’t regret.

Click here to purchase online.


November 23, 2020

LA193The Chief

Reb Chaim received a call one evening.

“Hello, is this Rabbi Goldzweig?” asked the man on the line.

“Yes, it is.”

 “I am visiting from Toronto for business and staying in a hotel downtown. I was told to call you for information about where I can get kosher food,” the caller explained.

Rabbi Goldzweig told the man that the kosher stores and restaurants were all located on the north side of Chicago, but that they would probably be closing within the hour. The man sounded disappointed that he would not be able to make it in time to get something to eat.

Reb Chaim told the man, “You know what? Let me stop off at the store and get you some sandwiches and I’ll bring them down to you. I should be there in about an hour.”

The man protested that Reb Chaim shouldn’t bother, but Reb Chaim told him not to worry about anything.

An hour later, Rabbi Goldzweig reached the hotel and saw a distinguished-looking Orthodox Jew in the lobby. He introduced himself and handed him a bag of sandwiches and other food.

“I can’t believe you came all the way downtown just for me!” the man said. “How much do I owe you?” He pulled out his wallet.

“Don’t worry about it. It’s my pleasure,” Reb Chaim reassured the man.

The man smiled and shook Reb Chaim’s hand. “My name is Moshe Reichmann and, thank G-d, I can afford to pay for it. I refuse to take the food without paying. Please tell me how much I owe you.”

Rabbi Goldzweig had never heard of the famous Canadian philanthropist. He smiled back and said, “Well, my name is Chaim Goldzweig, and have you ever heard of something called chessed? I refuse to take money for a chessed.

Mr. Reichmann looked at Rabbi Goldzweig incredulously. “Have you ever heard of me? My company is Olympia and York.”

“Hmm.” Rabbi Goldzweig thought for a moment. “I know where Olympia is and I know where York is, but they are nowhere near each other! But listen, if you want, you can take the money and give it to tzedakah instead.”

A little while later, Rabbi Goldzweig received a call from one of the rabbis at the OU.

“Chaim, you know you brought food to a man staying downtown?”

“Yeah,” Rabbi Goldzweig said. “He said his name is Reichmann or something like that. Why do you ask?”

“Chaim, that was Moishe Reichmann, one of the richest people in the world. You asked him if he knows what chessed is? He is one of the biggest ba’alei tzedakah around. He just called me to see if we have people from the moon working for the OU!”

But Reb Chaim wasn’t impressed. He would have done the same thing had the man not had a penny to his name.

Meet Reb Chaim Goldzweig. If you hadn’t heard of him until now, the above anecdote illustrates exactly the kind of person he was. A larger-than-life figure, he was the one on whose shoulders rested much of the kashrus industry of the world. But that was in the public eye.

In the privacy of his home, Reb Chaim was a ba’al tzedakah who supported countless individuals and institutions—even though he was not a rich man. He was the man who ran an open house that was literally just that: a house where random guests and homeless people felt comfortable opening the fridge, answering the phones, and changing the temperature of the thermostat, as if they were all bona-fide family members. He was the scion of chassidic Rebbes, whose bitachon in Hashem was genuine and absolute. And, of course, he was a beloved husband, father, and zeidy, who enjoyed nothing more than pampering his loved ones.

The Chief, written by a son-in-law, Rabbi Ephraim Nisenbaum, offers a peek into the life and legacy of Reb Chaim Goldzweig. In this book, you will read the fascinating history of the kashrus movement in America, and the enormous role that Reb Chaim played in it. You will also read many of the sometimes-scary-sometimes-hilarious-but always-entertaining stories that Reb Chaim experienced along his colorful journey as a globe-trotting mashgiach. As well, you will gain immeasurable chizuk and inspiration from the actions of this humble, self-effacing giant in chessed.

Click here to purchase online.