PORTLAND — Author talk by novelist Rachel Kadish on her book “The Weight of Ink” at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 21, at Jewish Community Alliance of Southern Maine, 1342 Congress St. Longfellow Books will be on site conducting a book sale and signing with the author after the talk. Free to students. Suggested admission is $10. Reserve your spot in advance at www.mainejewish.org or call 772-1959.
Set in London of the 1660s and of the early 21st century, “The Weight of Ink” is the interwoven tale of two women of remarkable intellect: Ester Velasquez, an emigrant from Amsterdam who is permitted to scribe for a blind rabbi, just before the plague hits the city; and Helen Watt, an ailing historian with a love of Jewish history.
As the novel opens, Helen has been summoned by a former student to view a cache of seventeenth-century Jewish documents newly discovered in his home during a renovation. Enlisting the help of Aaron Levy, an American graduate student as impatient as he is charming, and in a race with another fast-moving team of historians, Helen embarks on one last project: to determine the identity of the documents’ scribe, the elusive “Aleph.”