How We Choose Books

The PJ Library Book Selection Committee is hard at work year-round, finding the best books, beautiful illustrations, compelling stories and values to share with your children. They exemplify the best of Jewish children's literature.


We are devoted to making book choices that represent the broad spectrum of today's Jewish families. Working with authors, agents, publishers, and editors, the committee strives to ensure that the finest Jewish books for children find their way each month into the mailboxes of all PJ Library families.

Many of our books have won prestigious awards, including the Caldecott Medal and the Sydney Taylor Book Award. Several have been named as finalists for the National Jewish Book Award.

Book Selection Guidelines

As the Book Selection Committee reviews books and manuscripts for PJ Library, it asks:

  • Is this story suited for children from birth through eight years old?
  • Is the text (and illustrations, if available) engaging for young children and their parents?
  • Is the content appropriate to the PJ Library mission? Does the book contain a message of strong Jewish values?
  • Will children want to return to this book again and again?
  • Does the book reflect historical Jewish life, contemporary Jewish life, or some valuable aspect of the Jewish experience?
  • Will this book prompt family discussions about Jewish topics and lead families to consider making Jewish choices?

PJ Library's Book Selection Committee maintains two lists (one for ages birth through 3 years, the other for ages 4 through 8) with regularly-updated book ideas that are of interest to the committee. We welcome you to peruse our book ideas lists.

PJ Library is available to families who are raising Jewish children from birth through 8 years all across New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory. They come from many backgrounds -- some are intermarried, some have little or no formal Jewish learning, some attend a synagogue and celebrate Jewish holidays, and others may be unfamiliar with Jewish practice all together. We love that about PJ Library.

Due to the age of its participants, PJ Library does not send out reference books, books that deal with the Holocaust, or books that deal with death of a close family member.