Tales of the Holy Mysticat: Jewish Wisdom Stories by a Feline Mystic begins the way cat books usually do: as a series of autobiographical stories of Adler's amusing cat's antics and quirky personality. But it becomes much more. It is a testimony to faith and a way of imparting the messages of Jewish texts and practices from an unusual cat's eye view of spirituality. Connections between cat and Kabbalah are nicely drawn to grasp the attention and perceptions of readers of Jewish mysticism and cat lore alike.
The result is an exploration of Jewish studies that is more accessible than most, teaching not just the foundations of Jewish faith, but the importance in observing the world around us (which may be as close as one's kitty) and translating its actions and insights into the fabric of Jewish traditions and beliefs. Here readers will find a lively and thought-provoking way to appreciate the Holy Mysticat's wisdom as interpreted by Rabbi Adler.
– D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review. Oct 2020
Full review: https://www.midwestbookreview.com/mbw/oct_20.htm#dianedonovan
With her Tales of the Holy Mysticat, esteemed feminist theologian, Rabbi Rachel Adler has come up with a creative and novel way to introduce readers to Jewish thought, customs, history, prayer, rabbinical teachings, and traditions. How does she accomplish this feat? She uses her pet cat as a holy and scholarly teacher, "understanding his behavior through this lens could be a playful way of learning and teaching."
The book comprises thirty-six short stories, and eight very useful appendices. All of the anecdotes contain an undeniable cleverness, and some are even comical. Yet they are filled with deeper meanings and never come off as contrived. Rabbi Adler's thoughtful short stories can be described as a fulsome sweep through Jewish texts and practice summarized with clarity and detail. The journey is not only instructive, but also fun
Widely researched, Rabbi Adler certainly knows her territory! To say that I gained a new appreciation and insight into the rich diversity and endless complexity of Jewish practices and culture would be an understatement. And you don't even have to be Jewish to likewise gain the same appreciation.
–Norm Goldman, Bookpleasures.com. June 25, 2020
Full review: http://www.bookpleasures.com/websitepublisher/articles/9174/1/Tales-of-the-Holy-Mysticat-Jewish-Wisdom-Stories-by-a-Feline-Mystic-Reviewed-By-Norm-Goldman-of-Bookpleasurescom/Page1.html
In the preface of Tales of the Holy Mysticat: Jewish Wisdom Stories by a Feline Mystic, feminist theologian Rabbi Adler tells us that the Mysticat taught her "more about the faith limits of my own Jewish knowledge and the rich possibilities of a playful imagination" and we certainly see that in this delightful read. He was always there when she was learning (as rabbis do) and she sensed that he was aware of the different rhythms and rituals of the Jewish home. He was "an old soul with many lifetimes of Jewish wisdom to impart, reincarnated to a higher level in the form of a gray tabby–the Holy Mysticat."
The book is a collection of fables in which as Adler says, Aesop is replaced by a feline. I can honestly say that I had a wonderful time studying this book. I love the illustrations, the prose is gorgeous and engaging, the stories are fun and there is so much to be gained here about humanity, life and Judaism.
– The Wisdom of the Feline. Amos Lassen, August 11, 2020
Full review: http://reviewsbyamoslassen.com/?p=77992