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IHC Library & IHC Caring Community Book Loan Program

You can choose up to 3 books from the list below by clicking the checkbox next to the title. An IHC Caring Community volunteer will pick-up books and deliver them to the address above, and will retrieve them 3 weeks later.


Catherine and Liam agree to assist their friend, a Chicago restaurant owner, in an effort to help his elderly aunt in Italy retain her property and avoid eviction. Aunt Gabi has a manuscript that provides background for her current situation, focusing on the life of Ada Baumgarten, a talented young German violinist.  Descriptions of the lush Tuscany mountainside, and the history of Jewish experiences in Germany and Italy during World War II, make this page-turning novel a compulsive read.

Set in 1968 rural Australia, the novel’s hero, Tom Hope, who has had recent setbacks in his personal life, meets attractive, charismatic Hannah Babel, an immigrant from Hungary.  Tom is a sheep farmer who barely read one book in his life, but with his carpentry skills is able to help Hannah accomplish her wish to open a bookstore. Romance ensues and Tom becomes aware of Hannah’s tragic past. In addition to the appeal of the main characters, story themes include anti-semitism, cults, the value of literacy, and the meaning of loneliness in people’s lives.

Roza and her five-year-old daughter, Shira, hide from the Nazis in a barn loft in Poland during World War II.  To keep Shira quiet, Roza tells her stories about a magic garden with a yellow bird.  Shira, who is very musical, imagines hearing the bird sing.  The yellow bird becomes Shira’s steady comfort when she and Roza must part in order to survive.  Although they later lead new lives, their yearnings for one another are constant in a mesmerizing description of children separated from parents and assuming other identities during the Holocaust.

In the 1930s, Orly grows up in Vienna, leading a happy, creative childhood.  As the Nazi menace presents itself, her parents are lucky to get visas to Bolivia.  Orly and her father, a violist, slowly adjust to the new culture; her mother has a much harder time.  Orly makes friends with a neighbor, Miguel, is disturbed to see Nazis walking freely in Bolivia, but feels La Paz is her home.  She marries after the war and has a child.  l:eaving one’s homeland, learning a new language, and assimilating yet maintaining one’s heritage, are issues vividly depicted.

Retired Israeli road engineer, Zvi Luria, is showing signs of dementia. To keep his mind functioning, Zvi’s wife Dina, arranges for him to be an unpaid assistant to Maimoni, a young engineer working on a secret military road project in the Negev.  A Palestinian family is living in the project area and Zvi proposes building a tunnel which will hide their whereabouts.  Filled with good-natured humor, yet alluding to Arab-Israeli conflicts, the symbolism of dementia, and the red-tape of bureaucracy, Yehoshua presents a humane picture of life in Israel.



The American- born daughter of parents who had fled Mashhad, Iran, Amani conveys the difficulties of searching for one’s identity in the traditional home of her parents and the secular world outside.  Now a psychotherapist, Amini is able to draw a nuanced snapshot of herself as feeling invisible, yet loving her quick-tempered father, flamboyant mother, her older brothers and the American Iranian community.

Sydney Taylor (1904–1978) was author of the award-winning All-of-a-Kind Family series of books, the first literature published by a mainstream publisher, both written for, and featuring,. Jewish children. Based on Taylor’s own family, the series focuses on the lives of five sisters, each two years apart, all dressed so they looked the same. Now considered a classic, Taylor’s work is carefully researched by the authors, along with absorbing details of Taylor’s life.

The youngest of eight children, journalist Stephen J. Dubner recounts learning of his Jewish heritage, family dynamics, and religion.  At times comic and heartbreaking, his memoir reveals Dubner as feeling more like a returnee than a convert,  Dubner is the co-author of Freakonomics.

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg relates incidents from her early life, her marriage and family, and life on the Supreme Court.  In addition, she gives the background for her work on gender equality and important legal matters. Mary Hartnett and Wendy W. Williams, introduce each chapter, providing quotations and biographical information from the life of the iconic justice.

Moshe Dayan was born in the first kibbutz in Palestine and went on to lead a dynamic,controversial life as an acclaimed military leader, diplomat, archeologist, and international personality. Robert Slater deftly portrays a complex hero easily recognizable by his eye-patch.

Moshe Dayan was born in the first kibbutz in Palestine and went on to lead a dynamic,controversial life as an acclaimed military leader, diplomat, archeologist, and international personality. Robert Slater deftly portrays a complex hero easily recognizable by his eye-patch.


Mark Gerson posits that the Haggadah consists of great Jewish thought. He feels his perspective will provide your Seder guests with insights for living a more meaningful life.  The book was originally written for Seder leaders, and then was reworked to reach a wider audience.

Grishaver is a well-known Jewish educator who takes this opportunity to explore the fuller meaning and significance of Barukh Atah Adonai Eloheinu Melekh ha-Olam.  For Grishaver, saying a prayer is the start of becoming a blessing.  The six words are an intrinsic part of the process.  His easy-going style adds to the appeal of contemplating new thoughts.

In a question and answer format, this guide to understanding Judaism is informative and readable. Rabbi Alfred J. Kolatch clearly explains both the background and importance of Jewish religious and cultural practices in a popular work that many consider basic Judaism.

In order to help each of us cope with life’s struggles, Levi Meier, a chaplain and psychologist, points to the human side of Moses.  Using stories from Exodus, the midrash, Jewish mystics, modern texts and psychotherapy, Meier offers examples from Moses’ achievements, and his struggles as a leader, that helped him deal with life’s challenges.

Centering on the ideals and practices of the Jewish faith in this decades old, brief, inspiring volume, Rabbi Steinberg provides a sweeping overview of Judaism.  He eloquently describes its principles and ethical values and explains differences between Judaism and Christianity. Well-.written and accessible, here is a wonderful introduction to Judaism for all.


Sephardic Jews came to the Caribbean as crew members on Columbus's ships. Ezratty chronicles the rich history of the Jews in various islands inhabited mainly by the Dutch, British, Danes, Americans, Spanish, and French, as well as the Portuguese settlement in Recife, Brazil. Jewish residents were active and heavily involved in trade and in gaining civil liberties.

Shanghai was the only city in the world that did not require a visa when Ernest Heppner and his mother fled Nazi Germany.  Heppner’s testimony of what happened to him in Germany and in Shanghai is a riveting and unique account of the war years.  Ernie and his wife, Illo, were longtime members of Indianapolis Hebrew Congregation.

Two Jewish families, originally from Baghdad, Iraq, the Sassoons and the Kadoories were dominant in Chinese business and politics for a total of more than 175 years.  In addition to making profits during peaceful and war times, their activities included both moral compromises and outstanding generosity. They were able to protect many refugees fleeing Nazi Germany.

Over100 "firsts" arranged primarily in chronological order are described in response to questions such as - Where was the first Jewish settlement in North America? Who was the first Jew to open a department store? Who was the first Jewish astronaut? -  making this book of American Jewish history more than trivia.  It is an enjoyable and very educational read.

Born in Danzig, in 1921, Rosenberg’s life took several incredible turns as he studied in Paris, became a member of the Varian Fry group assisting artists and intellectuals flee Europe in 1940, joined the French resistance, survived frightening incidents, and eventually emigrated to the United States. Rosenberg was a professor at Bard College and died in October of 2021.

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Jack Benny’s daughter adds to the anecdotal nature of her father’s unfinished biography. Jack starred in radio and television shows for more than 30 years. His warm personality, on and off the air, gave listeners laughter and enjoyment from a comedian whose age was always 39.

A few months after Carla Goodman’s mother, Jessie  Kaplan, moves in with the family, Carla becomes aware that Jessie thinks she is the Dark Lady of Shakespeare’s sonnets. Carla also has to deal with other family stress. Cohen, a professor of English, enchants with a story that combines literary knowledge of the past with a present day flavor.

Neurologist Oliver Sacks admired his Uncle Dave, his “chemical” uncle, whom he would ask scientific questions his medical family could no longer answer.  Uncle Tungsten owned a company that manufactured lightbulbs with tungsten wire, In his inimitable style, Sacks wrote this book for scientists and for laymen as well.

The authors were partners in the rare book trade. Both had German-Jewish backgrounds, After fifty years, they share their experiences in what had been a man’s world, their thoughts on aging and recent changes in the world of books.

In his eighth book in the mystery series spotlighting Gabriel Alllon, Israeli master spy and painter, author Silva focuses on the death of a journalist, and the actions of a former KBG colonel now an arms dealer. Silva cautions that in contemporary Moscow, you should never look back, for you are never completely alone.  Moscow rules prevail in this page-turner.

Mon, March 27 2023 5 Nisan 5783