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Playing Cards for Purim

Arthur Szyk. Playing cards, Kings. Probably Łódź, 1930s.

Arthur Szyk. Playing cards, Kings. Probably Łódź, 1930s.

Every time the Jewish holiday of Purim comes around, I remember one of the most exciting projects I ever worked on: a deluxe set of playing cards accompanied by a book written by yours truly. (A small book at 60 pages but a book nonetheless.) The face cards are ancient Israelite kings and queens—King David, Queen Esther, King Solomon, and so on—and the Arthur Szyk artwork is just gorgeously colored and detailed. It was a blast to research and write about the original art, which I did have access to. There’s a more budget-friendly version of the project that I also highly recommend. If I were about to have a bat mitzvah, I know I’d want one as a gift.

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