Jewish LGBT organization Keshet has announced the winner of its first Jewish Children’s Book Writing Contest (mentioned here in February): The Purim Superhero, by Elisabeth Kushner, a public librarian in Vancouver, Canada—and a lesbian mom herself.
Kushner told Keshet:
When I heard about the Keshet contest, it seemed like a perfect fit: in the Purim story, Esther “comes out” as Jewish in a way that can be a model not just for Jews, or for GLBT people, but for everyone who feels different. I hope that The Purim Superhero will help inspire and reassure kids like Nate who don’t necessarily want to be like everyone else—and most importantly, I hope kids will enjoy reading and hearing the story.
Alas, the book is not yet available, although Keshet is working with a publisher to try and make it happen. Bonnie Rosenbaum, Keshet’s deputy director of communications and planning, told me:
Our selection committee of Jewish educators and librarians had a really hard time choosing the winner from the almost 50 manuscripts we received. We’re especially thrilled that in addition to The Purim Superhero, we also received a handful of other really impressive high quality manuscripts. If the publisher with whom we are working commits to publishing this one, we are considering self-publishing one or two more stories.
Personally, though, I’m glad they started with a Purim tale, because it’s just fun to listen to a child trying to say “hamantashen” (the filled cookies traditional for the holiday). Heck, I still have fun saying it myself. Hamantashen, hamantashen, hamantashen. . . . Now I have a craving.
Congratulations to Kushner! Can’t wait to read it.