**”Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Wisdom Tales  for the review opportunity. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.


The Dreidel That Wouldn’t Spin: A Toyshop Tale of Hanukkah

By Martha Seif Simpsom Illustrated by Durga Yael Bernhard

“This dreidel does not work!” The father had cried. “What do you mean?” the shopkeeper asked. “How can a dreidel not work?” It was certainly the most beautiful spinning top the shopkeeper had ever seen, with magical letters on its sides. But it just would not spin for two children who insisted on owning it! Later, the shopkeeper decided to try it one last time: would it spin for another child, one who carried the true spirit of Hanukkah in his heart?

My Review

We try to read a story every night before bedtime and the boys, 7 and 5, take turns on who gets the pick the story for the night unless mommy gets a new book in the mail.

This is a beautiful holiday story about hanukkah, along with a message from the heart and true holiday spirit. There are notes from the author at the end of story explaining the Jewish holiday and dreidels. It also includes an appendix that actually teaches how to play the dreidel game.

This is a book with a great storyline. I love books that don’t just tell a story but teach us something or have morals to them, especially children’s book.  This story tells about a shopkeeper who purchases a beautiful, hand-painted dreidel from a peddler. The peddler tells him that the miracle of hanukkah cannot be bought but the shopkeeper is more interested in turning a profit than in miracles and placed the dreidel in the display window thinking he would catching a fine price. The shopkeeper had a change of heart by the end of the story and we learn about the heart. This is a cute story with a great moral that both of my picked up on and we all really enjoyed the book.

About the Author

Martha Seif Simpson is an author and children’s librarian. She is the author of five professional books for teachers and librarians and is active in the American Library Association. You can read more about her on her website.

About the Illustrator

Durga Yael Bernhard is an award-winning illustrator and author of many fiction and non-fiction children’s books. She began painting when she was just thirteen years of age. She also teaches children Hebrew, Judaica, and illustrations. She is also well known for her religious and family-themed art pieces. You can read more about her on her website.

This 32-page, hard-cover book was published October 2014 and is available for purchase HERE. This book stands 8″ x 10″ and is a great book for children 5 years and up.

Once again all three of us gave this book two thumbs up!








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