Life in the Present Tense: Reflections on Family and Faith

Rifka Rosenwein, Author, Tova Mirvis, Foreword by . Ben Yehuda $14.95 (228p) ISBN 978-0-9789980-4-2

Before her life was cut short by cancer at age 42 in 2003, Modern Orthodox writer and editor Rosenswein had been a beloved columnist for seven years for the New York Jewish Week , reflecting once a month on child-rearing, careers, love, holiness and Jewish tradition. With equal parts humor and heartache—with heartache leaping from the page in the columns written after her cancer diagnosis—Rosenswein deals with aging parents, challenging modern schedules, timeless holy days and the joys of raising her three children. The columns address the quotidian concerns of a suburban Jewish family as well as more global issues: the fear and sadness after 9/11 and the sense of anxiety that some American Jews have about Israel. Sometimes, the order of the short essays is distracting—her daughter is four, then a newborn. Since the essays are so heavily autobiographical, a chronological order would have better suited the collection. Still, this is a treasure trove of wisdom from one of American Judaism's most beloved and lamented voices. Rosenswein's husband, Barry Lichtenberg, provides a touching afterword, and novelist Tova Mirvis (a former intern of hers) the foreword. (Dec. 11)

Reviewed on: 09/24/2007
Release date: 11/01/2007
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