Introducing: Chava Pinchuck

Once again, it's time to meet your Sydney Taylor Shmooze admins! Three friends run this blog: Susan Kusel (whose brainchild it was) and her partners in crime, Chava Pinchuck and Heidi Rabinowitz. You can read a bit about us in the About section but we thought you might like to get to know each of us a little better. Today it's Chava's turn.

Chava Pinchuck

1. Describe a day in your professional life.

My professional life is very quiet compared to Heidi's. I am usually sitting at my desk, working on the computer. I spend a good portion of the day doing research and looking at book reviews.

2. Talk about your experience on the Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee. 

L-R: Chava Pinchuck with 2010 STBA winner April Halprin Wayland

My time on the committee was one of the best experiences of my life, both personally and professionally. I read so many great books (and a few duds), I learned so much about Jewish Children's Literature and secular children's literature. I enjoyed working with my amazing AJL colleagues, and I made great friends for life. I got to meet so many authors and illustrators, and I traveled across the country to attend AJL conferences. My favorite part: notifying the winners.

3. What professional accomplishment are you most proud of?  

Chair of the committee is definitely up there. I'm also pleased to have edited a guide to the Sydney Taylor Book Award in honor of its 50th Anniversary in 2018.

4. What Jewish book has been the most influential in your life? 

Obviously, the Torah. But growing up, my favorite Jewish book was Goldie the Dollmaker by M.B. Goffstein. I think I liked the illustrations more than the text, but I checked out many, many times.

5. What changes are you hoping to see in the genre of Jewish kidlit in the future? 

I think I am not alone: biographies about Jewish women other than RBG; more fantasy, more early readers with Jewish content, more books about Israel, especially about the land, birds and animals, and more modern stories that are interesting and informative to non-Jews as well as Jews.

Bonus Question: How can people find you?

I blog at Life Is Like a Library. I don't always blog about children's books, but I mostly write about books and Israel.