The Adventures of Rabbi Harvey

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Rabbi Harvey book coverWhat the Book is About:

In this first book of the popular Rabbi Harvey series, author Steve Sheinkin makes clever and witty Jewish folktales accessible and fun for kids. Set in the Wild West of the 1870s, Rabbi Harvey is the unlikely leader of the citizens of Elk Spring, Colorado. Equipped with Jewish knowledge, a good heart, and a keen wit, Rabbi Harvey resolves disputes, fights crime, and saves the town from no-good robbers. This well-drawn graphic novel is an easy and enjoyable book for readers of all ages!

Jewish Content and Values

"Turn it and turn it, for everything is in it" (Hafoch ba hafoch ba, de'kula ba in Aramaic) – this quote from Ethics of the Fathers suggests that all the wisdom of the world can be found in the Torah (the first five books of the Bible). As sheriff of Elk Spring, Rabbi Harvey uses Jewish wisdom to deliver justice, demonstrating the ageless (and practical) value of Jewish ideas.

Positive Role Models

Rabbi Harvey is a likeable leader who is always ready to use his wit and wisdom to keep the peace.

Content Advisory

None

Talk it Over

Rabbi Harvey says a person should carry a card with “the universe was created for me” written on one side, and “I was created from dust” written on the other. Why do you think Rabbi Harvey thinks this reminder is important? What is significant about both of these ideas?

More For You

Many of the stories in The Adventures of Rabbi Harvey are based on folktales from Hasidic Judaism, a movement that was founded in the eighteenth century by the Baal Shem Tov, a legendary rabbi, scholar and mystic. The word “hasid” means piety, and adherents of the movement generally approached religious practice with an overwhelming joy and deep spirituality that was more mystical than the classic Jewish intellectual tradition popular in previous generations.  Today, many Hasidic Jews are disciples of a particular sect or followers of a specific rabbi (“rebbe”), and often live together in communities that are insulated from the influences of modern secular life. 

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