Sunday, July 05, 2020

Welcome to our now thrice-yearly Literary Link, a labor of love by your Jewish Link editors, who all love to read and have found reading to be absolutely foundational to our lives. Our purpose in presenting a regular special section on books is to promote the joy and value of reading and lifelong learning, and of course to bring you the most interesting and exciting books of the season, this time with an eye to Chanukah gift-giving and enjoyment.

But some books are so important that they can actually alter the course of one’s life. Our influences—and books can certainly influence our thinking—are key to our existence. They can make us question and consider our roles in life, our choices and even what we buy or with whom we spend time. Two books that changed my life? “Circle of Friends,” by Maeve Binchy and “This Is My God” by Herman Wouk. A book that changed our production editor, Jen Hoffer’s, life: “Far From the Tree,” by Andrew Solomon. A book that changed our publisher Moshe Kinderlehrer’s life? “The Chosen” by the incomparable Chaim Potok.

For this season’s Literary Link, I had the pleasure of interacting with Rabbi Ari and Miryam Wasserman, who collaborated on “Making It (All) Work: Women Surviving and Thriving at Work.” As a woman who works, I felt this book could be “life changing” for some people, and it certainly might have altered the course of my life and choices had it been available two decades ago when I began my working life. Its insights regarding halacha and the working woman are certainly extraordinary in their relevance to any woman in the working world, and for that matter, to any man who knows and cares for any observant woman who works in a secular environment. Please put it on your reading lists.

And from all of us at The Jewish Link, happy reading!

By Elizabeth Kratz