Editorial Review

Association of Jewish Libraries

Cover: Search for the Shamir

“Eric Kimmel has given us another educational monster/demon book. Think Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins (Holiday House, 1994) in ancient Israel. This second book in the Scarlet and Sam series sends the time traveling twins to Jerusalem during the time of King Solomon. They travel on Grandma Mina’s flying carpet. King Solomon and the Prophet Nathan brought them to help Solomon build the Temple. We see the wisdom of Solomon in the story of the baby which two mothers claim. The Prophet Nathan explains that a prophet is not a fortune teller. Solomon can’t build the temple because the Kingdom has no money and according to Jewish law, his builders can’t use tools to build the holy temple because metal is used to build weapons of war. They need to find the Shamir, an insect mentioned in the midrash that can cut through stone. In searching for the Shamir they must outwit Ashmedai (Asmodeus), The King of the Demons. Sam and Scarlett frequently share lessons that they learned in Hebrew School with their ancient hosts. The Author’s Note at the end of the book explains midrash, Solomon’s Temple, and the Jewish view of demons. The very detailed black and white illustrations help to place the story in ancient times. The lifting of the lid with Solomon’s magic ring shows children what a covered well for water looked like. The plot is a little unrealistic but the humor and asides will engage all readers, especially the references to modern technology. What child doesn’t want to travel back in time and help to determine the future?” – Association of Jewish Libraries

Products Reviewed

Title  
Search for the Shamir
  • Available in limited formats
  • Soon! Fall 2020
  • New! Spring 2020
  • New! Fall 2019

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