What happens when a big, new family moves into a small, quiet, respectable English town?
A lot can happen, and when the Mendels moved into Newfield, most of it did! First of all, there was Yossi — impossible Yossi — the Mendel’s youngest son who was always in trouble, infuriating the neighborhood over and over again.
Then there was Mrs. Mendel whose husband worked out of town all week long. Left with a houseful of lively children, she was barely able to cope. And worst of all, there was fourteen-year-old Chavi. Surly, defiant and unfriendly, Chavi disliked everyone, and everyone disliked her in return. Even when the girls at Beis Leah Senior School started their Achdus Campaign — a project to promote friendship and good will throughout the community — Chavi refused to cooperate. Entrenched behind her self-made wall of hostility, she annoyed and upset everyone around her.
Everyone, that is, except her next-door neighbor and classmate Shifra Perlstein. Not one to be put off by a difficult job, Shifra was determined to find a way into Chavi’s heart. She stubbornly continued to blunder, uninvited, into Chavi’s private world. Even though her friends laughed at her, and the reward for her efforts was usually a bristling “Mind your own business!”, she did not give up. Until one day, there was a frightening accident...
A Problem Called Chavi is a lovely, sensitive and realistic story about a school full of vivacious English girls trying to live up to the high standards of Jewish living. Their days are filled with the pains and pleasures of growing up, and the reader can’t help but share their adventures as they all search for a solution to the perplexing problem called Chavi.