My Account Sign up for eNews

Rashi's Daughter, Secret Scholar

By Maggie Anton (author)


Ages 10 and up

Access and download the study guide to Rashi's Daughter, Secret Scholar [PDF]

Read a recent interview with Maggie Anton from Publishers' Weekly, in which she discusses the three-book series Rashi's Daughters that she has written for an adult audience. Rashi's Daughter, Secret Scholar was adapted from the first book in this series, Volume 1: Joheved.

The tale of a young girl who challenges conventions to engage in Jewish learning

Anton maintains much of the details of Medieval life that makes the book so vivid and appealing.” – JTNews

“…Anton does a masterful job of explaining the intricacies of medieval life… this beautifully shows the diversity of women and the lives they lead, even long ago.” ­– ALA Booklist

“…an absorbing tale.” – Hadassah Magazine

The book is fascinating for the ways in which religion and superstition interact in every important act of life. This book should totally enchant and hold the interest of both adult and young adult readers.” - Multicultural Review

Set in 11th-century Troyes, France, Rashi's Daughter, Secret Scholar tells the story of Joheved, eldest daughter of Salomon ben Isaac (known as Rashi), one of the great medieval Jewish Bible commentators. At a time when women traditionally were barred from studying Jewish texts, Rashi secretly teaches first Joheved, then her sister Miriam. By day, Joheved helps in running the household and the family winemaking business, and by night she studies Talmud with her father.

As she nears marriageable age, Joheved finds her mind and spirit awakened by religious study, but she must keep her passion for learning and prayer hidden. When she becomes betrothed to Meir ben Samuel, she is forced to choose between marital happiness and being true to her love of the Talmud. Will she fulfill the expected role of a Jewish woman or pursue a path of Jewish learning?

About Maggie Anton

Maggie Anton is the author of Rashi’s Daughter, Secret Scholar for young adults as well as the adult Rashi’s Daughters series (Book I: Joheved; Book II: Miriam; and Book III: Rachel). She’s the winner of the 2006 Benjamin Franklin Award for Best Voice – Fiction and the 2005 Forward Magazine Award – Best Historical Fiction. Her speech topics include “Medieval Jewish History” (especially pertaining to women), “Women & Talmud Study,” and “Writing Historical Fiction about Real People.” Her talks are geared toward adults and young adults.

Willing to Travel, $250 Honorarium Requested but Negotiable