Many readers are passionate about the Harry Potter books, and Moshe Rosenberg is no exception. Known as “the Harry Potter Rabbi,” Rosenberg views the wildly popular stories by J.K. Rowling as reflections of many basic lessons related to Jewish ethics, which he teaches at Congregation Etz Chaim of Kew Garden Hills and at SAR Academy, both in New York. As he writes in the introduction, “I hope that you will share some aha! moments, when it becomes clear that what felt so right when it came out of Dumbledore’s mouth was also a teaching in Ethics of the Fathers, or a Midrash, or a Hasidic story. There will be times that an insight from the wizarding world will illuminate a biblical theme or vice versa.”
Addressing all seven of the Potter books, he capably relates Bible stories of Moses, Aaron, and King David as he touches on themes of breaking the rules, jealousy, grief, repentance, friendship, death, and much more. This small book contains many big ideas and is perfect for Harry Potter fans who would like to experience the tales from a fresh perspective. Rosenberg has carefully documented this enjoyably book that will appeal to both teenagers and adults.
This review first appeared in Congregational Libraries Today.