Chanukah in Chelm

Chanukah in Chelm

5.0 2
by David A. Adler, Kevin O'Malley

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The people of Chelm have good hearts, great dreams, and very little sense. So when Mendel needs a table to hold the Chanukah menorah, his simple trip to the storage closet turns into a hilariously bungled quest.  See more details below


The people of Chelm have good hearts, great dreams, and very little sense. So when Mendel needs a table to hold the Chanukah menorah, his simple trip to the storage closet turns into a hilariously bungled quest.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Deborah Zink Roffino
Set in the village of Chelm of Jewish folklore, this whimsical tale takes place on the first night of the holiday. The simple citizens in this snow-covered hamlet exhibit more spirit than common sense. Light-hearted sketches with comical dialogue create the old world ambiance lit by the glow of the candles.
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
It is winter in the famous town of Chelm, which in Jewish lore is filled with foolish people. The Rabbi has asked Mendel the caretaker to put out the menorah because it is the first night of Chanukah. He reminds him that it should be placed on a table so all can see the light. That begins Mendel's crazy search to find a table. While the story on its own is amusing, O'Malley has contributed his irreverent asides and comical characters to the tale. He has created double and single page illustrations executed in pen and ink with an oil wash creating muted tones that resemble rooms lit by candlelight. The subdued colors are perfect for the winter and indoor scenes in this funny story by Adler.
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 1-4This rollicking tale stars Mendel, the good-hearted, hard-working, but foolish caretaker of the temple. It is the first night of Chanukah, and Rabbi Nachman asks Mendel to put the menorah on a table by the window. In the closet, the caretaker looks over, under, and around the table, but still doesn't see it. His quest continues with good-natured silliness and a happy ending. Broad humor shines through in both the wry text and visual gags, pushing the traditional foolishness of Chelm further into farce. Dialogue balloons allow the characters to comment on the proceedings. A box is labeled "Imported Air," a bucket says "Cantor's Decanter," and a sign on the carpenter's workshop reads "Tables Are Us." O'Malley's oil wash on pen-and-ink illustrations, filled with amusing figures, rich colors, and beautiful scenery, portray a Chelm that is just the right combination of humor and tradition.

Product Details

StarWalk Kids Media
Publication date:
Sold by:
Seymour Science
File size:
19 MB
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Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

David A. Adler graduated Queens College in 1968 with a BA in economics and education and licenses to teach mathematics and history. He then worked for nine years as a New York City mathematics teacher. While teaching he studied at New York University and in 1971 was awarded an MBA in marketing. He began work on a PhD in marketing when inspiration struck and he wrote his first book, A Little at a Time (Random House, 1976). Suddenly his focus changed from marketing to writing.

In 1973 he married Renee Hamada, a psychologist, and in 1977 their first child, Michael, was born. By that time David had written several books. He was granted a child-care leave from teaching and while Renee continued to work, David stayed home, took care of Michael, and wrote in earnest. It was during his first year on leave that he wrote Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Stolen Diamonds. The mystery and its solution were inspired by baby Michael and all the things David needed to take along each time he took Michael outside. This was the first of almost fifty Cam Jansen Mysteries all published by Viking Press and Puffin Books. The Cam books have been translated into many languages including Spanish, Japanese, German, Swedish, Danish, Hebrew, and Korean. He is also the author of the Jeffrey Bones Mysteries published by Viking and Puffin.

David's Andy Russell series was inspired by another family member and the many adventure the family had with his enthusiasm and his pets.

David is also the author of the Picture Book Biography Series published by Holiday House, well researched, strictly non-fiction books for elementary school readers. IN the series are biographies of George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Thurgood Marshall, Anne Frank, Patrick Henry, Samuel Adams, and others. He had written a series of sports biographies including books on Lou Gehrig, Gertrude Ederle. Satchel Paige, Roy Campanella and Joe Louis all published by Harcourt and Viking. He has also written older level biographies of Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, and Golda Meir.

He has written many books on the Holocaust including We Remember the Holocaust, a book for older readers which incorporates first had accounts of the tragedy within the historical context. Among his other books on the Holocaust are The Number On My Grandfather's Arm, Hiding From the Nazis, A Hero and the Holocaust: The Story of Janusz Korczak and His Children, and One Yellow Daffodil (historical fiction).

One of his newest books, Don't Talk To Me About The War, historical fiction for older readers, takes place in the Bronx, New York in May - July 1940 and brings to life the time through the eyes of thirteen year-old Tommy Duncan. For each day in David's story he had the newspaper of the day on his desk. The news, weather, sports scores and radio programs are all accurate. While he wrote, David listened to big band music of the time. He had large models of cars from the 1930s and 1940s on his desk. He also listened to old-time radio tapes of "Fibber McGee and Molly" and "The Lux Radio Theatre," the same programs Tommy listened to in the book. David was so wrapped up in his research and writing that one evening, when his wife called him to dinner, David looked out the window and asked why there was snow on the ground, "It's May!" Renee told David, it may be May for you in your office but for everyone else, it's February.

David has also written Jewish holiday books, books on math, science, and economics, picture books in all, more than 200 published books.


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Chanukah in Chelm 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Funny story, great read! 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Funny and sweet. You'll love reading it to your kids, grandkids