ELIJAH'S ANGEL: A Story for Chanukah and Christmas by Michael J. Rosen

ELIJAH'S ANGEL: A Story for Chanukah and Christmas

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Elijah Pierce (1892-1984) was an African-American barber in Columbus, Ohio--as well as a widely exhibited woodcarver (first prize at the International Meeting of Naive Art in Zagreb) and a lay minister. Here, two of his friends recall his special qualities. In Rosen's somewhat fictionalized story, set on a day that happens to be both Chanukah and Christmas, Elijah gives Michael (nine)--an admirer of his carvings, especially of his biblical animals--an angel. Deeply touched, Michael is also concerned: Is this a graven image? Fortunately, his wise parents see it otherwise: ""It's an angel of friendship. And doesn't friendship mean the same thing in every religion?"" Rosen (ed., Home, p. 724) seamlessly integrates Michael's compunctions and Elijah's reverence and generosity into a warmhearted narrative, while the debuting Robinson's vibrant oils recall the lively animation of Jacob Lawrence, her flat, stylized forms freely outlined in black. A fine tribute to an intriguing character; an interfaith story with true respect for both faiths.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1992
ISBN: 0152015582
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: HBJ