Miriam at the River and Beni’s War from Kar-Ben Publishing® Receive Association of Jewish Libraries’ Sydney Taylor Book Awards

January 25, 2021 6:17 PM EST

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Minneapolis, Minnesota, Jan. 25, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Miriam at the River, a picture book written by Jane Yolen and illustrated by Khoa Le, and Beni’s War, a middle-grade novel by Tammar Stein, have been named named a Sydney Taylor Honor Book and Sydney Taylor Notable Book, respectively. Kar-Ben Publishing®, an imprint of Lerner Publishing Group™, published both titles. The Sydney Taylor Book Awards are given to outstanding books for children and teens that authentically portray the Jewish experience. They are awarded annually by the Association of Jewish Libraries, a division of the American Library Association (ALA). The ALA awards were announced this morning during the American Library Association’s Midwinter virtual Youth Media Awards ceremony. 

Miriam at the River tells the biblical story of baby Moses from the point of view of his older sister, Miriam. Giving her baby brother a kiss, brave little Miriam places his basket into the river. With a quick push, she sends the basket into the water, hoping her brother will be rescued. Pharaoh's daughter arrives in time to save him, setting the stage for the boy who will become a Prince of Egypt. This well-known tale is revisited through the eyes of a loving big sister who must let her baby brother go in order to save him.

The sequel to the 2017 Sydney Taylor Honor book, Six-Day-Hero, Beni’s War follows the story of Motti’s twelve-year-old brother, Beni, during the Yom Kippur War. In the blink of an eye, Beni's older brother Motti is off to war, leaving Beni behind with his mother and father. As bombs drop around Beni and his family, they flee to safety, every day hoping for news of Motti and the developments of the war. Beni must find a way to aid the war effort in his own way, proving that he too can be a hero, even as he learns along the way that there is dignity in every person, including the people he considers the enemy. 

Miriam at the River and Beni’s War are both powerful books that honor Jewish heritage and bring history to life for young readers,” said Adam Lerner, Publisher and CEO of Lerner Publishing Group. “We are thrilled the Sydney Taylor committee has honored these beautiful books.”

Praise for Miriam at the River:

"Yolen puts readers inside Miriam's mind as the girl carries out her mission and realizes she is part of a bigger destiny." —Publisher's Weekly

“Elegant storks wade in the water as hippos and crocodiles swim nearby. This biblical tale is filled with wonder, hope, and beauty.”―Kirkus Reviews


Praise for Beni’s War:

“Readers will be motivated by Beni’s perceptiveness and inspired by the strength he demonstrates through acceptance—even towards the enemy.”

—starred, School Library Journal

“Readers coping with shattered contemporary realities will recognize themselves in a child’s fears and growing empathy.”―Kirkus Reviews


About Kar-Ben Publishing

Kar-Ben Publishing, founded in 1974, is an imprint of Lerner Publishing Group, headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota. With more than 400 titles in print, Kar-Ben is the largest publisher of exclusively Jewish-themed children’s books in the world, publishing 20-24 new, high quality children’s titles each year. For more information, visit karben.com.

About Lerner Publishing Group

Lerner Publishing Group creates high-quality fiction and nonfiction for children and young adults. Founded in 1959, Lerner Publishing Group is one of the nation’s largest independent children’s book publishers with fifteen imprints and divisions: Lerner Publications, Millbrook Press™, Carolrhoda Books®, Twenty-First Century Books™, Graphic Universe™, Darby Creek™, Kar-Ben Publishing™, Carolrhoda Lab®, LernerClassroom™, Hungry Tomato®, ediciones Lerner, First Avenue Editions™, Lerner Digital™, Zest Books™, and Lerner Publisher Services™. For more information, visit lernerbooks.com or call 800-328-4929. Follow us online at the Lerner Blog, on Twitter, or on Facebook.


Follow Lerner Publishing Group online:

Blog: lernerbooks.blog

Twitter: @LernerBooks

Facebook: Lerner Publishing Group

To purchase Miriam at the River and Beni’s War, please visit your local bookstore, order by phone at 800-328-4929, or visit us online at lernerbooks.com.


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