(St. Paul, MN, October 30, 2006) LIKE A MACCABEE, a children’s chapter book that’s a little about Hanukkah and a lot about soccer, has just been released. Written by California author Barbara Bietz and illustrated by award-winning Minnesota artist Anita White, LIKE A MACCABEE combines soccer, family challenges, bullying and Hanukkah in a refreshing story that transcends religious and cultural practices and taps into the heart of a child.

The book is written for children of all backgrounds and beliefs and most appropriate for ages eight and above. Among its most unique features, it is not a typical Hanukkah book. Rather, the holiday provides a source of inspiration and meaning for challenges that every child eventually faces: changes in the family, peer pressure at school and the risk of loss in competition.

Days before Hanukkah, ten-year-old Ben’s soccer team makes the league championships. Only one thing stands between Ben and victory: the rival team’s best defender, a school bully whose favorite sport, other than soccer, is tormenting Ben. No one at home seems to understand. And now he has to share his bedroom with his grandfather, a man he barely knows. Facing humiliation at school and misunderstood by those who love him most, Ben finds an unexpected friend in his grandfather, learning wisdom and strength for the big game and beyond.

Both Barbara Bietz and Anita White are available for interview and comment and for book signings in their local areas. Contact details available on request to Yaldah Publishing.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Barbara Bietz was born and raised in Southern California. She received both a Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s degree in education from the University of Arizona. Her work for adults and children has appeared in numerous magazines, including a monthly column for and children’s book reviews for Jewish Book World. She lives in Oak Park, California.

ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR: Anita White is an award-winning artist and a native of Minnesota. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts with honors from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design and has been an elementary school art teacher in Saint Paul for 25 years. She lives in south Minneapolis.

LIKE A MACCABEE is now available for $16.95 in bookstores, online, and through wholesalers Ingram and Baker & Taylor in time for the holiday buying season and National Jewish Book Month in November.

LIKE A MACCABEE by Barbara Bietz. Illustrated by Anita White. First Edition. 5.5 x 8.5 hardcover, 136 pages. ISBN 1-59287-136-4. $16.95. Publication: October 23, 2006. Category: Juvenile Fiction.

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