Please welcome Charlotte Offsay with her list of Jewish Joy in Picture Books. We are giving away two signed copies of her latest picture book, Challah Day!. To enter, please fill out the Rafflecopter at the bottom.
Jewish Joy in Picture Books
Challah Day! by Charlotte Offsay, illustrated by Jason Kirschner
Challah Day! is a rhyming ode to the timeless tradition of challah baking. It features a happy family gathering together in the kitchen to bake delicious braided egg bread for their Friday night Shabbat dinner. Back matter details the cultural importance of Challah and Jewish traditions and includes a challah recipe. Challah Day! encourages readers to head to the kitchen and enjoy the messy delicious sweetness that comes from baking together as a family. [picture book, ages 3 and up]
Debbie’s Song by Ellen Leventhal, illustrated by Natalia Grebtsova
Debbie Friedman was a beloved Jewish songwriter who infused her music with her passion for Judaism. She created music that welcomed, included, and honored the voices of everyone. Her songs were untraditional and not everyone embraced her approach, but Debbie was passionate and determined. She wove English and Hebrew words into songs that everyone could sing and carved out a new path for Jewish music. An inspiring and uplifting story overflowing with Jewish joy. [picture book, ages 4 and up]
How to Welcome an Alien by Rebecca Klempner, illustrated by Shirley Waisman
When an alien spaceship lands behind the Abraham home, the family invites them inside and hilarity ensues. This warm and joyful story is based around the Jewish Mitzvah of welcoming guests and making them comfortable. I highly recommend it to anyone looking to open discussions of kindness and welcoming others into our lives regardless of how different they may seem. [picture book, ages 4 and up]
When a young boy discovers that his family has been putting together anonymous boxes to help a neighbor during a difficult time, he is reminded of his own family’s hard time and a surprise box that arrived with food and gifts. The boy is inspired to create a box of his own to gift to his neighbors. This heartwarming story illustrates the Jewish value of Tzedakah – charity. It is a lovely way to introduce the concept of giving and inspire spreading joy to those in need. [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Counting on Shabbat by Nancy Churnin, illustrated by Petronela Dostalova
This joyful board book prepares the youngest readers for Shabbat while counting from one to ten. It shows “one table draped in white, two candles set to light” etc., and is an upbeat rhyming read-aloud sure to get everyone excited for Shabbat to begin. [picture book, ages baby and up]
Rivka’s Presents by Laurie Wallmark, illustrated by Adelina Lirius
Rivka is excited to start school but when her papa falls ill, she has to stay home to care for her little sister. Rivka doesn’t let this obstacle stand in the way of her learning though, she trades chores with the local shopkeepers for lessons. A beautiful celebration of out-of-the-box problem solving, a love of learning, community, and finding a way to be there for family while achieving personal goals. [picture book, ages 3 and up]
The Porridge-Pot Goblin by Jacqueline Jules, illustrated by Hector Borlasca
Filled with fun, this modern twist on a Jewish folktale tells the story of two children trying to get rid of a pesky invisible goblin who is interfering with their Shabbat preparations! This one is sure to have littles giggling as they help braid the challah and set the table for their Friday night Shabbat dinner. [picture book, ages 5 and up]
Dream by Dream: The Story of Rabbi Isaac Mayer Wise by
Isaac was born in a small European village where Jews weren’t allowed to own land or live in certain places – they often faced harsh treatment and were treated unfairly. He was raised to love and respect words over violence and eventually became a Rabbi committed to connection, being open-minded, equality, kindness, and generosity. He spread his light far and wide and made big changes along the way. A powerful and inspiring read about the power of words, kindness, and leading with your heart. [picture book, ages 5 and up]
Big Dreams, Small Fish by Paula Cohen, illustrated by Merissa Czyz
Shirley has big ideas for her family store but unfortunately, everyone thinks she is too small to help. When the adults are called away she finally gets the chance to put her big ideas to work and decides to give away the gefilte fish that isn’t selling to their non-Jewish customers who are unfamiliar with the Jewish delicacy as a special surprise. Her neighbors are delighted with the ‘new’ neighborhood delicacy and rush back to the store for more. A heartwarming story of determination, out-of-the-box thinking, and spreading Jewish joy. [picture book, ages 4 and up]
2 Signed Copies of Challah Day! GIVEAWAY!
We are giving away two signed copies of her latest picture book, Challah Day!. To enter, please fill out the Rafflecopter below. We can only mail to U.S. and A.F.O. addresses.
Charlotte Offsay was born in England, grew up in Boston, and currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two children. She is an active bookstagrammer, SCBWI, 12×12, and Inked Voices member.
Charlotte is the author of Eight Sweet Nights, A Festival of Lights, illustrated by Menahem Halberstadt (Doubleday Books for Young Readers, 2024), The Quiet Forest, illustrated by Abi Cushman (SSBFYR/Paula Wiseman Books, 2024), Challah Day, illustrated by Jason Kirschner (Holiday House, 2023), A Grandma’s Magic, illustrated by Asa Gilland (Doubleday Books for Young Readers, 2022), The Big Beach Cleanup, illustrated by Kate Rewse (Albert Whitman, 2021), and How to Return a Monster, illustrated by Rea Zhai (Beaming Books, 2021).
Learn more about Charlotte’s work at charlotteoffsay.com and follow her on Instagram at @picturebookrecommendations. Charlotte is represented by Nicole Geiger at Full Circle Literary.
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