Book Review: The Hidden Saint by Mark Levenson

April 19, 2022

About:

The Hidden Saint by Mark Levenson is a fantasy novel steeped in Jewish mysticism. Mr. Levenson is an award-winning writer, journalist, and screenwriter.

  • 312 pages
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Level Best Books
  • Language ‏ : English
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : 1685120504

Book Review: The Hidden Saint by Mark Levenson
My rating for The Hidden Saint4
Buy The Hidden Saint from Amazon.com*

More books by Mark Levenson*

Thoughts:

This book was certainly an unexpected delight. I had no idea what to expect and found a very creative, inventive book that takes Jewish folklore, old tales, history, as well as theology to combine them into a coherent, creative, and original work.

One of the aspects of Jewish stories that I always enjoy is the sarcastic, self-deprecating humor. My favorite character, a mentor to the protagonist, Rabbi Adam, is just that. Believe you me, for a few chapters I was worried I wouldn’t get that sort of entertainment.

The author wrote of well-known Jewish mystic creatures, Lilith, the lamed-vavs (36 righteous persons living in the world in every generation), and, of course, the golem. However, he also included some that even I haven’t heard of before like imps, a city of immortal Jews, spirits, and other creatures. Moreover, Mr. Levenson included several retellings of Jewish folk tales, from far and wide. While I only recognized a few, I certainly enjoyed the homage.

The Hidden Saint by Mark Levenson had bewildering aspects to it which I found surprising. While I knew about Jewish myths, I didn’t expect the story to go into the fantasy/horror realm. Not that it’s bad, just that I don’t generally associate these genres with Judaism.
Maybe because we lived it out throughout the centuries, we don’t need to invent anything else

The author’s note, in the end, tells a bit about his research. The explanations of where, and when, in Judaism’s lore he got his creatures were as fascinating as the stories themselves.

Synopsis:

Rabbi Adam is anxiously awaiting a family wedding, when Lilith, an ancient evil, abducts his children. To save them, Rabbi Adam must create a golem and find his way to the underworld.

Accompanied by a sarcastic mentor, a hidden saint (lamed-vavnik), Adam realizes that there’s more at stake. Not only the life of his children but the key to the lost memories of his youth, as well as the fate of the world.

Buy The Hidden Saint from Amazon.com*
More books by Mark Levenson*

Zohar — Man of la Book
Dis­claimer:I bought this book for free.
*Ama­zon links point to an affil­i­ate account, the money is usually spent on books

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The Hidden Saint by Mark Levenson
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The Hidden Saint by Mark Levenson

Wrap Up

The Hidden Saint by Mark Levenson

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