The children’s book market isn’t an area I know especially well. But when Sheri Sinykin contacted me to see if I’d be interested in a review copy of her picture book, Zayde Comes to Live (illustrated by Kristina Swarner; Peachtree Publishers; release date October 1, 2012), I accepted. Gratefully.
The story introduces us to Rachel, a young Jewish girl whose grandfather (“Zayde”) has come to live with her family. “It’s because he is dying,” Rachel tells us. And Rachel is worried, because she doesn’t know where Zayde will go after he dies.
I’m many years older than the fictional Rachel, and I still don’t quite understand what Judaism teaches about where we go after we die. Like Rachel, however, I take comfort in the teachings shared in this book, particularly about Olam Ha-Ba, the World to Come.
The illustrations are lovely, and the words simple. Everything combines to convey the difficulty–and necessity–of saying good-bye.
I’ve seen a review on Goodreads in which another reader remarked that Zayde Comes to Live brought tears to her eyes. It brought tears to mine, too.