Publishers Weekly Review of Do Animals Have Souls?

Do animals have soulsWell-researched and informative, this concise volume on animals will settle any concerns or inquiries a Jewish pet owner may have. Isaacs (Kosher Living: It’s More than Just the Food), a much published congregational rabbi, touches upon all aspects of animal life and behavior, including their status in Judaism and their relationship with humanity. There is a chapter dedicated to animal quotes and organizations, but the majority of his work answers questions posed to him over the years by his congregants. The queries cover a broad spectrum, ranging from “Does Judaism have any mythical animals in its tradition?” to “Isn’t the slaughtering of an animal for food considered cruelty to animals?” to “Can I sit shiva for my pet?” The rabbi, a pet enthusiast with his own brood, is clear in distinguishing between humans and animals, urging readers never to blur that sacred line. This honest and clear compilation will serve as a ready handbook for pet lovers with questions.

The original review can be viewed here.

Publishers Weekly on Vision and Leadership: Reflections on Joseph and Moses

From Publishers Weekly:Visions and Leadership

With this 11th installment in the series, Soloveitchik’s previously unpublished material on biblical luminaries Joseph and Moses comes to light. Shatz, Wolowelsky, and Ziegler combed through the treasure trove of manuscripts, tapes, and lectures left by the Rav, as Soloveitchik was affectionately called by his students, to arrange this meticulous collection of thoughts and insights. In it, Soloveitchik shares his analyses of Joseph as dreamer and ruler; his assessment of Joseph’s father Jacob/Israel as both subservient and powerful; and the roles Moses played as judge and king, among other topics. As with his other works, the Rav’s erudition is evident, and the personal stories that are woven into his biblical exegesis reinforce his assertion that the Bible’s stories and its layers of interpretation have informed the psyche of the Jewish nation throughout history and still resonate today. Bible scholars and followers of the Rav will certainly appreciate this important volume.