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Megillat Esther

By JT Waldman (author)


Preview sample chapters of this book at the author's website

"Waldman's Megillat Esther is a visual masterpiece ... The richly detailed pages are dazzling ... this is just the sort of independent, intelligent, nonapologetic work that JPS and entities like it should be promoting."
- The Forward


"Through text and art, Waldman feeds readers only the raw words, emotions, and actions of each of the characters, illustrated by Expressionist-inspired drawing."
- The Jerusalem Report


"JT Waldman is a very talented young man who has provided an original translation, artwork, and calligraphy for Megillat Esther. In essence, he has written and illustrated an adult comic book version of this classic story. The artwork is stunning, revealing layers of meaning behind the text... This is a work of great creativity and originality..."
- Jewish Book World


"A bravura display of detail and technique..."
- Will Eisner


"...Waldman's book represents a new breed of biblical work: more than a simple illuminated manuscript, he provides a visually interpreted translation of Esther with commentary. To my knowledge, nothing like this has ever been created."
- SBL Forum (Society of Biblical Literature)



"This work opens up the doors for a whole new field within biblical interpretations, a new kind of midrash.... Waldman creates a dynamic theater where the Bible and pop culture tango."
- Las Vegas Jewish Reporter


"...unlike any comic book/graphic novel anyone has produced before."
- Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle



Read the complete SBL Forum review and interview with author JT Waldman



Read the review in New Voices: The Jewish Student Paper



Read the complete Christianity Today article about religious comics, "Word Made Brash"

Read the article that mentions JPS and Megillat Esther at the New York Comic Con


"Impressive is a vast understatement for JT Waldman's undertaking in Megillat Esther.... by the end, one has witnessed a story and a culture."
- Curled Up with Good Book

Read the complete Curled Up with a Good Book review


Megillat Esther is commonly referred to as the Book of Esther: but there is nothing common about JT Waldman's interpretation of this Biblical story. In what may be the world's first religious, scholarly comic book, Waldman tells the epic tale of exile and redemption in graphic form.

When Esther, a Jewish woman, is made Queen of Persia she must keep her identity hidden, all the while maneuvering to save her people from annihilation. This is a story familiar to many Jews who have heard it recounted every year on the holiday of Purim. But readers of all backgrounds will be entranced by what artist Waldman depicts in his interpretation of the text. At once traditional and groundbreaking Megillat Esther will challenge secular assumptions about the Bible.

Each page of Megillat Esther is a visual tour de force and features the Hebrew text with original English translation, as well as opulent drawings depicting the story of the Persian Queen. Traditional interpretations of the story are woven throughout the panels.

Megillat Esther presents the reader with a topsy-turvey world in which fortunes reverse and nothing is what it seems. This vibrant, edgy retelling of a classic Biblical tale is sure to amaze and intrigue scholars and laypeople of all religions and comic book lovers alike.

About JT Waldman

JT Waldman is a comic book illustrator and interaction designer. His first graphic novel, Megillat Esther, drew from archeological, rabbinic and pop cultural sources to create a bold retelling of the biblical story of Esther. He later went on to design a web application for JPS called the Tagged Tanakh; a site that enables people to tag and contribute remarks to any word or verse in the Bible. JT is currently working on his next graphic novel with Harvey Pekar.

A graduate of the University of Michigan with a B.A. in Arts and Ideas in the Humanities, Waldman also holds a technical degree in digital design from the Vancouver Film School. He also studied at the Facultad de Bellas Artes de Sevilla in Seville, Spain, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and the Liberal Yeshiva in Jerusalem, Israel. JT lectures and offers workshops on Jewish art, comix and midrash. He also contributed to two books, From Krakow to Krypton and The Jewish Graphic Novel, that both detail the intersection of comic books and Judaism. To learn more about JT and his work go to www.JTWaldman.com.

His speech topics include “Comics as Midrash,” “Create Your Own Midrash,” and “Jews in the Comics.” His talks can be geared to young adults and adults.

Willing to Travel, Honorarium Negotiable