Solel Library

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The Solel Library is a unique institution within an institution that contains 12,000 books and periodicals. Congregants and people from the wider community alike make extensive use of the facility. Many have described it as the most complete Jewish library in the Chicago area.

Our collection of Holocaust literature includes more than 1,000 books, and the shelves are brimming with Jewish reference books, art books, primary books, junior books, magazines and newspapers.

The Solel Library is open seven days a week.

Mobile Library
The Mitzvah Committee offers drop-off and pick-up service for congregants who are unable to visit our library in person. Books can be borrowed for three-week periods.

These books are available from the mobile library:

  • Art Lover by Peggy Guggenheim
  • Jerusalem 1913 by Amy Dockser Marcus
  • Jewish Maxwell Street Stories by Shuli Eshel and Roger Schatz
  • Jews and Power by Ruth R. Wisse
  • Mandrakes from the Holy Land by Aharon Megojed
  • Omaha Blues by Joseph Lelyweid
  • People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks
  • Schlepping Through the Alps by Sam Apple
  • Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky
  • The Hidden Isaac Bashevis Singer by Edited by Seth L. Wolitz
  • The Modern Jewish Canon by Ruth R. Wisse
  • The Orientalist by Tom Reiss
  • The Romance of a Shop by Amy Levy
  • Who She Was by Samuel G. Freedman
  • Yiddish Civilisation by Paul Kriwaczek

To borrow one of these great reads, simply email the Mitzvah Committee or call Allan Litwack at the Solel office.



Suggested Reading

Wondering what to read next? Here are a few suggestions.

Day After Night: A Novel, Anita Diamant
In her best-selling novel, The Red Tent, Anita Diamant re-imagined the lives of women in biblical times, the community of support between them, and their unmarked footsteps in history. Her new novel, Day After Night, seeks out a woman's narrative in a real event that took place in Israel three years prior to statehood.

America’s Prophet: Moses and the American Story, Bruce Feller
Bruce Feiler opens up the Exodus story in a new way by viewing it through a different lens—the history of the United States of America. "For four hundred years, one figure stands out as the surprising symbol of America," Feiler writes. "His name is Moses."n>

This I Believe: Documents of American Jewish Life, Jacob Rader Marcus
This study is based primarily on documents such as ethical wills, statements of a moral nature, selected bar mitzvah and confirmation addresses, and personal letters. These are very human writings that bring experiences from the past to the present time. The second part of the book reveals the documents themselves, and points out that Jews had much in common in ethical matters.

These Are the Words: A Vocabulary of Jewish Spiritual Life, Arthur Green
Quoted from the Introduction, The Power of Words, "A tremendous surge of interest in various mystical and spiritual traditions has recently occurred. "Turned on" by a great variety of spiritual experiences, Jews lacking in basic religious education are coming home to seek out their own tradition." The author has chosen 149 central words, and given us a humanly sensitive, spirituality powerful explanation.

The Jewish Moral Virtues, Eugene B. Borowitz and Frances Weinman Schwartz
This is a book of "musar"—practical wisdom applied to contemporary life. These virtues include trustworthiness, loving kindness, compassion, generosity, charity, humility, and pure-heartedness, among others. The author expands to include wisdom from the ancient rabbis and medieval philosophers.

New Books
Check out the book cart just to your right as you enter the Solel Library—there you’ll find the newest books in our collection.