Amy's Reviews > The Yankee at the Seder

The Yankee at the Seder by Elka Weber
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's review
Feb 28, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: historical-fic
Read from February 28 to March 03, 2010

This beautifully told story for older readers takes place in Virginia immediately after the Civil War has ended. It is a delicate time, the states are in upheaval from destruction and war, but it is also a time to be welcoming to others. It is Passover. Jacob and his family, Virginia Confederates, invite a Yankee soldier to join them. At first, Jacob is shocked and angry, how could his family invite him? But, his mother reminds him that during Passover they welcome all who are hungry and in need of a meal. The tension and awkwardness between the soldier and the family is immediately felt and flares up during a dinner debate, which, is part of Jewish tradition to honor individual interpretation to each side of a story. Whether that story is about the story of the Exodus or the story of the Civil War. Slowly, a friendship grows between Jacob and the soldier, and a friendly game leaves Jacob in possession of a real Yankee solider hat.

This is an incredible story, filled with uncomfortable moments that older readers can explore in understanding what it must have been like right as a war was ending. The dense text is just right for grades 2-5.

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message 1: by Ruth (new)

Ruth Did the author provide a note in relationship to any research completed for the text, or if the story was based on an actual event?

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