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An ‘Inventive’ Book Brings Olden-Day Inventions to Life

Reviewing: Once Upon an Invention,” by M. C. Millman. The Jewish Children’s Book Club. 186 pages. 2017. ISBN: 9781973969853.

With the release of her newest book, popular author of 42 books M. C. Millman brings history to life for eager readers. “Once Upon an Invention” is not just one story but 25 timeless tales of intriguing inventions throughout the centuries, their connection to the Jews of yesteryear and their association to the Jews of today—all under one cover.

Each historical-fiction story is written with inventiveness and an impressive amount of well-researched and precise details. This gives readers a true taste and feel of the times as they follow the easily relatable characters brought to life through the adventures and intrigue they experience through the centuries—kidnappings, identity theft, banishment, bravery and brilliance. “Once Upon an Invention” is written with M. C. Millman’s inimitable humorous style that ends with a surprise twist time after time.

Hard to imagine an era when shoelaces would have been considered a novelty, but after reading all about how one boy singlehandedly saved President George Washington from disaster with a single strand, envisioning such a time isn’t so hard any more. Equally challenging to think of how a girl could save her kehillah from being thrown into exile with a pocket in a time when pockets were a clothing accessory, or how a boy could attempt to save his brother from the corrosive influence of Shabbetai Tzvi with a mere pencil. How anyone could try to outwit a malevolent priest with nothing more than a balloon becomes something the reader can envision as being within the realm of possibility when turning the pages of this book. Stories come with the comprehensive historical background of each invention as well as the Jewish connection to halacha and history.

Although full of page after page of surprises, one thing is for sure—“Once Upon an Invention” is guaranteed to withstand the test of time.

“Once Upon an Invention” is available from The Jewish Book Club, which only sells books bearing the Torah Umesorah stamp of approval and can be found here at Jewishchildrensbookclub.com along with M.C. Millman’s second new release, “Good as Gold.” To contact M.C. Millman for school workshops and speaking engagements email [email protected].

 

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