Hanft, Josh 1956- (Joshua E. Hanft)

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Hanft, Josh 1956- (Joshua E. Hanft)

Personal

Born 1956; married; children: three sons. Religion: Jewish.

Addresses

Home—New York, NY. E-mail—[email protected]

Career

Freelance editor and writer. Has also served as vice president of new product development at Golden Books Family Entertainment, as vice president and publisher at Dalmatian Press, and as director of licensed publishing at Scholastic. Congregation Ansche Chesed, New York, NY, executive director.

Writings

The Miracles of Passover, illustrated by Seymour Chwast, Blue Apple Books (Maplewood, NJ), 2007.

Miracles of the Bible, illustrated by Seymour Chwast, Blue Apple Books (Maplewood, NJ), 2007.

AS JOSHUA E. HANFT

(Adaptor) Howard Pyle, King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, illustrated by Pablo Marcos, Abdo Publishing (Edina, MN), 2002.

Jackie Robinson, illustrated by Pablo Marcos, Abdo Publishing (Edina, MN), 2005.

Sidelights

Josh Hanft, the executive director at Congregation Ansche Chesed in New York City, is the author of the well-received picture books The Miracles of Passover and Miracles of the Bible. In the former, Hanft tells the history of the Jewish holiday, relating the story of Moses, the plagues, and the parting of the Red Sea and also describing the traditional aspects of the Seder. A critic in Publishers Weekly complimented the "inviting, straightforward text" in The Miracles of Passover. A number of reviewers also offered praise for illustrator Seymour Chwast's inventive book design, which incorporates a lift-the-flap format.

Hanft and Chwast have also collaborated on Miracles of the Bible, a companion volume to The Miracles of

Passover. Here Hanft retells a dozen familiar tales from the Old Testament, such as Noah's ark, David and Goliath, Daniel in the lion's den, Jonah and the whale, the birth of Adam, and Samson and Delilah. "Each story is succinctly told in one page of simply written text with a short, relevant Bible verse," a contributor in Kirkus Reviews noted, and Ilene Cooper, writing in Booklist, observed that Hanft's prose is "both understandable and suitably dignified." Citing the combination of the author's "dramatic" vignettes and Chwast's gatefold illustrations, remarked a Publishers Weekly reviewer, predicting that young readers "will likely flock to this hands-on reading experience."

Biographical and Critical Sources

PERIODICALS

Booklist, May 1, 2007, Hazel Rochman, review of The Miracles of Passover, p. 92; October 1, 2007, Ilene Cooper, review of Miracles of the Bible, p. 72.

Kirkus Reviews, October 1, 2007, review of Miracles of the Bible.

Publishers Weekly, February 26, 2007, review of The Miracles of Passover, p. 94; August 27, 2007, review of Miracles of the Bible, p. 94.

School Library Journal, April, 2007, Lisa Silverman, review of The Miracles of Passover, p. 122; November, 2007, Rachel Kamin, review of Miracles of the Bible, p. 108.