With her latest book, Sandy Eisenberg Sasso lets us know that we can learn something from the Old Testament. And it's a timely lesson in a world where fighting exists on playgrounds, on television and among countries.
Cain & Abel: Finding the Fruits of Peace (Jewish Lights Publishing, 2001) tells about the destructive nature of anger. Sasso focuses on how Cain's jealousy and anger took away "the earth that had always felt warm and soft beneath his feet" and the fruits — orapples, plumelons and banangerines — that grew on the same trees.
But Sasso offers readers hope that one day we can cultivate the fruits of peace and make the world a better place. Making the connection to today's violence, she writes: "Perhaps one day, when each person learns to reach out an open hand without the rock, without the sword, without the gun, the entire world can be saved."
This is a good book for kids (ages 4 through 8) and adults to explore together. Sasso includes questions so readers can discuss the effect of anger on others and how people can deal with their emotions in positive ways.
The artwork adds to the appeal: Vivid, bold colors — purple, red, blue, green, yellow — leap from the pages. It helps set the story's tone, making us feel the jealousy, anger and hope.
Order Cain & Abel from www.amazon.com or check your local bookstore.
© 2014 Augsburg Fortress, Publishers