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This potpourri of Jewish short stories and essays was diligently amassed for many years by Rabbi Elkins, author and anthologist. He begins his presentation with the mistaken claim that Jews "are the original storytelling people," ignoring that in all societies, a significant way of transmitting culture from one generation to the next is through stories. The 69 stories presented represent Elkins's "passion for uplifting stories." They come from a variety of sources, including books, newspaper articles and journals. The authors are, for the most part, rabbis, doctors, writers and teachers. Their work is sorted by Elkins into nine topical sections, each containing from five to nine stories as well as an introduction by him. Two sections deal with the Holocaust, while the others explore timeless virtues like goodness, hope, endurance, tradition and providence. A final section addresses Israel as a land of miracles. Although they are uneven in quality, the simply written stories testify eloquently to the Jewish capacity for survival despite the long litany of suffering that has dogged the tearful history of Jews through the ages. (Oct.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.