An NPR holiday tradition for nearly two decades, Hanukkah Lights presents brand new fiction to celebrate and illuminate the holiday season — moving tales of discovery and reconciliation, the persistence of hope and the promise of undimmed light — read by Susan Stamberg and Murray Horwitz.
'The Latke Maven' by Gerald Shapiro
In the Kansas City of 1959, an intrepid fourth-grader weaves unlikely tales of Judaism for his Gentile classmates — until a boast about Hanukkah finds him cooking up a small miracle all his own. Author Gerald Shapiro teaches at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, and has written three story collections: From Hunger, Little Men and Bad Jews and Other Stories.
'My Hanukkah Gift' by Farideh Goldin
A precious gift leads to the reunion of old friends and a reconciliation of ancient cultures. Writer Farideh Goldin was born in Shiraz, Iran, where she grew up in a Muslim neighborhood. She's the author of Wedding Song: Memoirs of an Iranian Jewish Woman and is working on a second memoir, chronicling her family's ordeal during the Iranian Revolution and her new life in the United States.
'Holiday' by Steve Stern
In the year 2015, a cynical student finds himself on an unlikely road trip with offbeat relatives, traversing a harsh world where it takes little miracles simply to move from place to place and from day to day. Steve Stern is also the author of the story collection The Wedding Jester; his novel The Frozen Rabbi is slated for publication in 2009. Stern teaches creative writing at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.
'Lotte Returns!' by Aryeh Lev Stollman
A 100-year-old opera singer faces one final audience in a performance reflecting the undimmed light of an enduring world. Author Aryeh Lev Stollman has also written two award-winning novels, The Far Euphrates and The Illuminated Soul, and the story collection The Dialogues of Time and Entropy. Stollman is a neuroradiologist and lives in New York City.