If you want to expand your knowledge of Judaism and start to build a Jewish home library, the following are some books I would recommend you purchase:
Jewish Literacy by Rabbi Joseph Telushkin -- If you want to have just one book in your home which explains Judaism in an easy-to-read, complete manner, this is the book to buy. It discusses the Bible, Jewish history, American Jewish life, anti-Semitism, Jewish texts, Jewish ethics and basic beliefs, Jewish holidays, Jewish life cycle events, the synagogue and prayer in a very thorough and comprehensible manner. And the author has a good sense of humor. You probably won't read the book from cover to cover, but if you ever want to look up something about Judaism and find an answer you can understand, this is the book to have.
Living Judaism by Rabbi Wayne D. Dosick -- This book, available in paperback, is a guide to Jewish belief, tradition and practice. It deals with many of the topics in Jewish Literacy (above), but in not as much detail. It is much shorter than Jewish Literacy and can be read from cover to cover.
Biblical Literacy by Rabbi Joseph Telushkin -- The Bible can be a tedious and difficult book to read. In this book, Rabbi Telushkin discusses the Bible from beginning to end in a clear, easy to read fashion. He summarizes the text and gives a lot of explanations and background information. You can read the book from cover to cover or you can use it as a reference when you want to look something up.
Kosher Jesus by Rabbi Shmuley Boteach -- An Orthodox rabbi who is the author of well over twenty books, including a very popular book entitled Kosher Sex, Rabbi Boteach, in this book, tries to emphasize the common ethical and moral teachings that unite Judaism and Christianity rather then the beliefs and practices which separate them. He points out the Jewish roots of Jesus' ethical and moral teachings.
The New Encyclopedia of Judaism by Geoffrey Wigoder (Editor-In-Chief) -- This is a scholarly one volume encyclopedia dealing in detail about all aspects of Judaism. It is not a book for leisure reading. But if you want a very comprehensive reference book about Judaism to keep in your home, this is a book to consider.
Have a wonderful summer. Remember that weekly Friday evening (7:30 P.M.) and Saturday morning (10:30 A.M.) services continue throughout the summer months.
Rabbi David Weissman