Hills author shows Israeli Independence Day, art in new book

By: Sherri Kolade | C&G Newspapers | Published April 6, 2016

FARMINGTON HILLS/WEST BLOOMFIELD — Farmington Hills author Lisa Rose decided to take on the 68th Israeli Independence Day in a unique way — through a children’s book, “Shmulik Paints the Town.”

Rose’s book is about a town celebrating Israeli Independence Day, which causes the town mayor to honor the day with awards, speeches, music and dancing, according to a press release. 

In preparation for the day, the mayor asks Shmulik to paint a mural and decorate the park around it, and Shmulik agrees. His only problem is that he cannot decide about what to paint. That is when Shmulik’s dog, Ezra, decides to paint and decorate for Israeli Independence Day, also known as Yom Ha’Atzmaut.

Yom Ha’Atzmaut began in 1948. The official celebration takes place on Mount Herzl in Jerusalem, and Israeli families have picnics and barbecues, according to the press release. This year, Israeli Independence Day falls on May 12.

The book is the first children’s book for Rose, a mother and wife.

Illustrator Catalina Echeverri, originally from Bogota, Colombia, contributed to the book’s artwork.

Rose said her book is a “fun story” meant to inspire children.

“Shmulik is a real procrastinator and intimidated by the event,” Rose said, adding that children can relate because sometimes they get stuck in their own creative process.

“They can see themselves in Shmulik,” she said, adding that the joke in the story is that Ezra does the job without Shmulik’s knowledge.

“It’s confidence boosting in that sense, and it is fun,” Rose said. “There are a lot of serious things in life, and this story is not one of them. It’s just time for kids to enjoy it and hopefully be inspired to do their own artwork.”

Rose said she noticed that there are not a lot of works about Israeli Independence Day, and she wanted to expose more Americans to the holiday. 

“Really it is just a fun holiday, and I thought that by making a book about it, it would make people think more about it,” she said. “It is not a well-known holiday in the United States or North America.”

At 7 p.m. April 14, Rose will be at the Farmington Community Library, 32737 W. 12 Mile Road, for a book signing and reading.

Rose said she is looking forward to the upcoming event, which her associate, Laura Scott, head of children’s services at the Farmington Community Library, organized.

“I’ve known Laurie for years,” Rose said, adding that when she offered to give the library a copy, Scott said no — the library would purchase the book and host the event.

“I’m very happy to be doing it at my home library, where finally I can say I have a book shelved there.”

Scott said Rose has been a frequent patron at the library.

“She is one of the many writers in the community that we cheer along and support, and we were very happy to hear that she had a book published and have it at the library,” Scott said. “Lisa is so enthusiastic, and I think it is a wonderful opportunity to share her work with her friends in this community.”

Scott added that Rose manages, in her book, to celebrate the work of an artist, and the character traits of perseverance and determination.

“And those are qualities that people like to cultivate in their children,” Scott said.

Rose will also discuss her book at 10 a.m. May 4 at Temple Israel, 5725 Walnut Lake Road in West Bloomfield Township.