Linda Cohen Loigman’s novel tells intergenerational story of matchmaking

Tuesday, December 6, 12 pm

Watch from Home–Register for the link to join


The Matchmaker’s Gift: A Novel

Linda Cohen Loigman

St. Martin’s Press

320 pages, 2022

Do you believe in love at first sight? Do you believe in soulmates? The Matchmaker’s Gift is a dual-timeline novel about Sara Glikman Auerbach, and her granddaughter, Abby.

Sara is a female matchmaker or shadchanteh on the streets of New York’s Lower East Side in 1910.

It was interesting to learn about Orthodox matchmaking and that there were thousands of Jewish matchmakers or shadchan in New York. Unsurprisingly, the business of matchmaking was a male dominated field, and with Sara having the ability to see flashes at the edge of her vision (showing her that a couple is bashert, or meant to be), we learn the Shadchanim are very threatened by her successful matchmaking.

When Sara dies, her granddaughter, who in a twist of fate is a highly successful Manhattan divorce attorney, inherits her journals in which she recorded a lifetime of matches. As Abby reads the journals, she finds more questions than answers. Is her career right for her?

How could you not fall for a book with a gorgeous cover, home-made cinnamon babkas, a Pickle King, knish wars, soulmates, and a beloved grandmother with a saying for everything?  Will Abby inherit her grandmother’s calling and become a modern-day matchmaker? Readers who enjoy romance with a little magic thrown in and believe that “there is a lid for every pot” will love The Matchmaker’s Gift!

If you love the book as much as I did, or if you want to hear more before you read it, Loigman is one of the speakers for this year’s Lee and Bernard Jaffe Family Jewish Book Festival, a program of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater and Simon Family JCC. Loigman is speaking as part of the festival’s Arts + Ideas Book of the Month series, a collection of conversations surrounding books with intriguing topics, characters, and stories for book-club-style conversations that will allow the community to engage personally with some of this season’s most exciting authors.

Register at For more information, contact Hunter Thomas, director of Arts + Ideas, at 

The Lee and Bernard Jaffe Family Jewish Book Festival is held in coordination with the Jewish Book Council, the longest-running organization devoted exclusively to the support and celebration of Jewish literature.

Reviewed by Joan Laderberg