I am a Haggadah addict. Every year, it seems, I purchase a new Haggadah to add to our collection. From traditional to pop-up books, I have quite a wide variety. I’ve even written a few additions of the Haggadah myself that we have used at our Passover Seders.
But, I never went so far as to publish one, which is exactly what Richard and Liora Codor did. They wanted to ensure that their children would have an exciting and engaging Passover Seder. When they were unable to find a Haggadah that pleased them, they created their own.
When I showed the Richard Codor’s Joyous Haggadah: The Illuminated Story of Passover to my seven-year old, he said it looked fun and not normal. Not normal is a good thing in the eyes of a seven-year old who is anticipating the long hours of a Passover Seder.
And, I agree. I was immediately drawn to this Haggadah because of the vibrant colors and the cartoon-like illustrations. The text is easy to read. The pages are clean and uncluttered but filled with information. There is a combination of English, Hebrew, and transliterated Hebrew.
The Codors admit that – while they have included all of the steps – they have shortened some of the blessings and other writings. Kiddush, for example, is the standard “…borei p’ri hagofen and does not include the second paragraph. Also omitted are the additions that would occur if Passover fell on Shabbat.
The voice the Codors use to take Seder participants on this journey is friendly and inviting. They obviously want the Seder guests to connect with this story of our heritage, and they do a brilliant job!
In the Maggid (story) section of the Haggadah, you will find the four questions, the four sons, the history of how we became slaves, and – subsequently – how we became free. What I really like is the simplicity and the depth that occurs simultaneously. From Abraham to Isaac and Jacob, the Codors write the story on top of a map to show the journey from Ur to Egypt. From the map, we move to a cartoon where the story of Moses is told.
If you are a traditionalist, you will notice that the “discussion” of the Passover offering, matzah, and maror is omitted as well as the rabbinic discussions, and the three spills of wine for dam, vah’aish, v’timrot ahshan (blood, fire, and columns of smoke). You will also be disappointed with the extremely short version of the Birchat HaMazon (blessing after the meal). Though it’s nothing that another Haggadah cannot easily supplement.
Richard Codor’s Joyous Haggadah ends with a couple of well-known Passover songs with pictures to entertain and a couple of recipes as well. The chocolate matzah delight looks delicious.
If you do run a traditional Seder, this Haggadah is easy to supplement. If you are looking for a Haggdah that is educational, entertaining, and engaging – this is a perfect choice!
I purchased this Haggdah on my own and decided to review it in order to let others know about it.
You can purchase this book on Amazon, along with some of my other favorite Haggadot.