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A Hanukkah with Mazel

A Hanukkah with Mazel

By: Joel Edward Stein
Illustrated by: Elisa Vavouri
Publisher: Kar-Ben Publishing
Publication Date: August 2016
ISBN: 978-1467781763
Reviewed by: Ellen Feld
Review Date: November 22, 2016

Misha is a poor artist, living all alone in the village of Grodno. As Hanukkah approaches, Misha is sad that he has nobody to celebrate the holiday with - but that is about to change...

On a very cold winter night, a cat wandered into Misha's barn and curled up with Klara the cow. In the morning, when Misha went out to milk Klara, he found the hungry cat hiding in a corner of the barn. Sensing that the man had a good heart, the skinny cat walked over to him. Soon the weakened cat was curled up in the little cottage, next to the fire, with a full belly of milk. Misha named his new friend "Mazel," which means "Luck" in Yiddish. The two were soon fast friends and while they had very little - Misha couldn't even afford candles for the menorah - they had each other to share the holiday of Hanukkah.

Misha shares some delicious latkes with Mazel, and comes up with a very clever way to light the menorah candles. But when a peddler comes to the cottage, Misha might just lose his new best friend. Will Misha be able to celebrate Hanukkah with Mazel?

A Hanukkah with Mazel is a charming story about the true meaning of Hanukkah. With lovely watercolor illustrations to bring the story to life, children will enjoy hearing this tale over and over.

Quill says: A sweet story that teaches children the important lessons of Hanukkah, a time for hope.

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