Introducing Rabbi Barbara and Her Book: The Cat That Ate the Cannoli

Book cover of Rabbi Barbara's book The Cat That Ate the Cannoli

All quoted text and Images used with permission from the author, Rabbi Barbara Aiello.

“Discovering Rabbi Barbara and her book … turned a light on so many parts of my own family’s traditions, and opened my eyes to the anusim stories in my own grandparents from Calabria. I read it with tears the first time, and reread it with more tears, finding more details that I missed the first time. Thank you Rabbi Barbara! – Corbin”

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Meeting the Jewish Community of Mumbai India

Irene Shaland and guides inside the Mumbai Mogen David Synagogue

Excerpt from Irene Shaland’s book “The Dao of Being Jewish and Other Stories.”

Jews settled in Mumbai (Bombay) in the 18th century. First, the Baghdadi arrived in the 1730s. Then, the Bene Israel began migrating from the countryside into the city in the 1740s. Today, Mumbai has the largest Jewish community in India: 3,500 to 4,000 people, most of whom are the Bene Israel. We visited two of the city’s eight synagogues: Kenesseth Eliyahoo and Magen David. Both were built by the Sassons, the wealthiest family of the Baghdadi Jews. The elegant blue structure of the Magen David Synagogue was erected by David Sasson in 1861. Hanna and Eliyahoo were waiting for us inside.

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Jewish Diaspora Book Review

Book cover The Dao of Being Jewish and Other Stories

We came across a recent review of Irene Shaland’s book “The Dao of Being Jewish and Other Stories: Tales of Jewish Diaspora, Persecution, the Holocaust and Rebirth in Europe, Africa and Asia” and want to share it with our readers.
Reviewed by  Beverly Friend, Ph. D., Professor of English at Oakton Community College, Executive Director of the China Judaic Studies Association.

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Thornybush Game Reserve Executive talks about “Suburbanites on Safari”

book cover of suburbanites on safari

Here is what Nic Griffin, Chief Executive of The Thornybush Game Lodge Collection, had to say after reviewing Alex Shaland’s new book “Suburbanites on Safari”

“Alex’s book is a fascinating intro to Safari choice criteria, its also easy light reading and simplistic in its aim to assist those that may travel often, but not au fait with Safari lingo. It adequately gives a heads up on what needs to be considered in an almost entertaining way.” –Nic Griffin, Chief Executive, The Thornybush Luxury Game Lodge Collection.

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Barbara Miller’s Review of Suburbanites on Safari

zebra

“Are you ready for a wildlife adventure in southern Africa? Not sure where to start? What a wonderful travel guide “Suburbanites on Safari” is! Indispensable. Incredible photography and written in an engaging manner. Even if you’re not going on safari and want to look through a window (safely from your armchair) into the amazing animal world of lions, giraffes etc, this book will have you riveted. Ever wonder why the king of the jungle will let you get up close and personal in a car without attacking you? Or will they pounce at half a chance? Read this book and find out.” Barbara Miller, author of “The European Quest to Find Terra Australis Incognita: Quiros, Torres and Janszoon.”

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Book Review: Birds for beginners in Southern Africa by Philip Coetzee

Review by Philip Coetzee

If you look for a field guide, this is the wrong book, but if you want to understand more about birds, about their biology, habits and habitat, this is the perfect book.  In a fun way, with random cartoons and loads of colorful illustrations, the life of birds is described, from the size of the eggs, the type of chicks, how they fly, migration and where the birds can be found.

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The “Jewish Question” in Vienna (excerpt from The Dao of Being Jewish and Other Stories)

monument in Vienna, Austria

Don’t look for the Steinedererinnerung in your guidebook: the murdered Jews of Austria have neither a Rick Steves nor a Frommer. And Vienna, basking in its Baroque and Art Nouveau splendor, would rather have you waltzing from Schonbrunn palace to Sachertorte’s shops instead of searching out the synagogues and homes of long-gone Jews. An Austrian sarcastic proverb, as noted by Magrit Reiter in her conference presentation “Antisemitism in Austria after the Shoa,” declares that Germans were the “better Nazis,” while Austrians were definitely the “better anti-Semites.”

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