The Shabbat Queen, a Talmudic metaphor for the importance of a welcoming, regal atmosphere for family and guests each week, inspires a little girl and her parents to set their table with a few special items.
Rosie wonders whether, since a Shabbat Queen exists, there can also be a Shabbat Princess? Neither her mother nor her father has ever heard of one, but they invite Rosie to be their princess for the evening. Rosie dresses up for the occasion, while her parents add crystal candlesticks and the just-polished silver goblet to the customary best dishes. Rosie’s addition of a golden sequined scarf for a challah cover completes a Shabbat table fit for royalty. Pink- and lavender-shaded scenes of a modern home setting (often flanked by a side border of flowered vines) alternate with Rosie’s imagined majestic view. A panorama of rolling meadows beyond a castle filled with lords, ladies and court jesters surrounds a tall, bejeweled Shabbat Queen wearing a flowing rose-pink gown and golden crown. Following the three blessings and the banquetlike meal, Rosie wonders aloud about the appropriateness of creating such extravagance and is assured by her parents: “When an honored guest visits our house, she deserves extra-special treatment.”
Meltzer’s child-oriented tale presents a lovely way to honor the Sabbath with a bit of respectful festivity. (author’s note) (Picture book. 4-6)