Jewish Values: Jewel and the Journey, The

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205 p.
In this engaging historical novel, the author has recreated Jewish life in 18th century Russia and the fervor of the followers of the Gaon of Vilna (1720-1797) to resettle in the Holy Land. The story traces the perilous journey of Ephraim Edelstein, who, along with his family and others, makes the trip of many weeks and months, from traveling by sled on the frozen river, to overland wagons, and finally to sailing on ships. Ephraim has been entrusted by his grandfather with a precious and mysterious jewel along with a riddle that he must solve. He eventually solves the riddle using the knowledge he has gained through his yeshiva studies, and provides the means for his family to reach their destination. In the whole process, Ephraim learns a lot about himself, growing and maturing along the way. He also meets many other Jews who inhabit cities along the journey and comes to realize their mutual love of Eretz Yisrael. The central theme of this historical novel is love of Eretz Yisrael and the lengths to which some Jews of the 18th century pursued that love.
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