HERE COME THE PURIM PLAYERS! by Barbara Cohen

HERE COME THE PURIM PLAYERS!

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KIRKUS REVIEW

In The Binding of Isaac (1978) and I Am Joseph (1980), Cohen chose dubiously to cast the central figure as narrator. In the case of the Purim story of Esther's triumph over the Jew-hater Mordecai, she's made an inspired right choice--showing us the drama of good-vs.-evil as enacted in a rabbi's house in the long-ago Prague ghetto. It's a story, moreover, that the audience knows well--so there are cheers for Esther and her noble uncle Mordecai, and gasps and prompting at crises. . . sure identification for the reader. At Haman's fall and Mordecai's proclamation of the holiday of Purim, comes rejoicing, feasting, singing. Then, ambiguously but suggestively: ""The narrow streets of the Prague ghetto are empty now, and silent."" Brodsky's patchy, sketchy, vari-styled watercolors convey a sense of the occasion (there's much jeweltoned coloring)--but don't attend very closely to the incidents. Still, this is the story in the kind of setting, and with the passion, that kept it alive. Youngsters who know it from any source would find it ramifying here.

Pub Date: March 16th, 1984
ISBN: 0807406457
Publisher: Lothrop, Lee & Shepard