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One Book | One Community — Meet the Author at Spertus

One Book | One Community — Meet the Author at Spertus

Sunday, December 4, 2011 - 2:00 pm

Listen to audio from the program

Visitors were invited to participate in One Book I One Community. Discover A Day of Small Beginnings, a remarkable debut novel by Lisa Pearl Rosenbaum selected specifically for this Chicago Jewish Community initiative. They explored themes of Jewish faith and identity, received a special reader resource guide perfect for their book groups or own investigations, participated in related programs, and met the author!


Lisa Pearl Rosenbaum was born and raised in New York, where she studied modern dance.She majored in religion and philosophy at New York University, then studied international relations at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. After working at the Israeli Consulate in Los Angeles, Rosenbaum went back to school to study law. After her first child was born, she took a writing class at UCLA and found that her sensibilities about writing felt much like creating dance—a choreography with words. In the 1990s Rosenbaum traveled to Poland with her in-laws, who are Holocaust survivors. Their experiences inspired A Day of Small Beginnings.

A Day of Small Beginnings starts in rural Poland with a lively 83-year-old ghost named Friedl Alterman. It tracks three generations of a Jewish family unraveling the mysteries of their past. It was selected by Spertus staff and local Jewish librarians for its mystical and surprising plot lines, its stories of characters across generations, and the vivid portrait it paints of life for Eastern European Jews.

A Day of Small Beginnings addresses ideas about Jewish faith on a personal level and through the lens of political and social change. It examines the loss of Jewish family history and cultural heritage against the backdrop of secular freedom and opportunity. We found A Day of Small Beginnings to be meaningful and enjoyable for adults from their 20s to their 90s (and beyond). Please note, however, that this book is for adults, not children.

One Book | One Community

Download the Reader Resouce Guide>

In conjunction with Jewish Book Month, Spertus presented a series of programs and events — all related to A Day of Small Beginnings — in locations across the Chicago region.

Getting Inside the Story
Sunday, November 13

Revolution & Tradition
in Modern Jewish Literature
Sunday, November 20

Sunday, December 4


The Book Stall at Chestnut Court
Presented in partnership with
The Book Stall at Chestnut Court.

Spertus is pleased to have
JUF News
as the media sponsor
for One Book | One Community.