The Mohel from Mars: A Hanukkah Story by Miri Ariel
The book at Amazon
Motti comes from a long line of mohels: his father was a mohel, his grandfather was a mohel, his grandfather’s father and grandfather were mohels, and so on… tracing back to when humans didn’t live on any other planet except Earth. His entire life was spent preparing to follow their footsteps. But now that he’s finally become a mohel, Motti finds himself unsatisfied and unhappy! Yet to be anything else means to disappoint–and even lose–his family.
During Hanukkah, Motti agrees to fill in for his brother Herschel and everything changes. On a rocket ride back home to Mars, Motti encounters the terrible: a vicious insectoid alien known as a Seleucid sent by the evil Roman ruler Antiochus. With the help of a prayer and his inner courage, Motti raises his scalpel and slays the space monster.
A Maccabee soldier known as Dov Bear begs Motti to join them. Torn between his desire to fight for humanity and his desire to keep his community and loved ones happy, Motti struggles to live a double-life as a Maccabean soldier of the galaxy. He spins his dreidel which glows and transports him to his missions.Although Dov Bear is welcoming, there are soldiers such as Clifford and Elmo who are less so. In a Jewish childrens book that highlights the story of hannukah and the Maccabees, Motti must conquer obstacles and fear, outside and within.