For Whom the Shofar Blows
Rabbi Ben 1,2,3
Marvin J Wolf
thrillers , mysteries, religious
Rambam Press; 2 edition
October 1, 2013
Rabbi Ben, hero of For Whom the Shofar Blows and A Scribe Dies in Brooklyn, is back. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times—newly-engaged, Ben is in Pittsburgh for a medical procedure when he passes out in the street. He comes to in the home of Abby Silverblatt—the older sister of his ninth-grade girlfriend. Ben had saved her son from being attacked by school bullies. Invited to services at the Sanoker Shul, Abby’s tiny synagogue, Ben is asked to give a guest sermon—their Rabbi Geltkern, has disappeared. Abby’s wife Yolanda, a Pittsburgh cop, along with Abby and Stan Bernstein (who helps run the shul) ask Ben to look into Geltkern’s disappearance. Oh, and could he fill in for their rabbi while he’s at it? Ben just wants to take it easy, but how can he say no? Sifting through the clues of Geltkern’s disappearance, Ben discovers unusual goings-on at the synagogue. Papers are missing, a mysterious motion-detection camera alerts someone on the outside when the building is occupied, and an intruder visits the premises. When Bernstein is found dead in his office, his files stripped bare, Ben knows he’s touched a nerve. The more Ben uncovers, the less it makes sense—until he begins to suspect that perhaps Geltkern isn’t really a rabbi. Using Talmudic logic, Ben pieces together the puzzle, and comes up with millions of reasons why someone would want him out of the picture. With the help of a bowling alley’s oversexed accountant looking to score a strike with our red-haired hero, Ben unravels an elaborate plot that goes back to Sanok, Poland on the eve of World War II, and beyond. It is a far, far better thing that he does, than he has ever done.
A review for the 3 books currently in the series. When will book 4 be published please?
For Whom the Shofar Blows (1)
A Scribe Dies in Brooklyn (2)
A Tale of Two Rabbis (3)
I enjoyed reading M-9 so much that I checked the author out.
Marvin J Wolf has also written real crime and other non-fiction, but I found a
really enjoyable 3 book series (so far) about Rabbi Ben the Rabbi without a
Schul but acting as a Paladin, as he puts it. This being a trouble shooter for
various Rabbis and their Congregations in and around America.
I would put these 3 as 4.5 stars. The first 2 better than
the 3rd but still very good reading. Some extremely interesting
points about the way the Jewish religion is practiced in the US – more reform –
(I was brought up Orthodox), especially the fact that women were permitted to
handle the Torah and read even if not an official Reform Synagogue, but yet
with some religious things that I was not aware of. But then I’m not a Rabbi! So helpful for
those who want to know more about the Jewish faith – I particularly liked the
explanation that Jewish people don’t need Confession and Atonement , as life is
all about doing good and atoning for doing wrong immediately – helping others
through deeds and living a ‘good’ life.
I am waiting for book 4 to come out – clearly the author has
ideas on what it is to be like but has got side-tracked into writing M-9 etc