Alisa Solomon’s Wonder of Wonders opens with two brief stories that, in the hands of another writer, might be mere anecdotes: Fiddler on the Roof’s near-simultaneous invocation in 2011 by political radio talk show host Glenn Beck and Jewish protestors involved with Occupy Wall Street. Indeed, the entire introduction, aptly named “A little bit of this, a little bit of that,” seems at first to dwell on the anecdotal. Before we come to the evolution of the musical Fiddler on the Roof, we are first introduced to kids singing “Sabbath Prayer” at summer camps, interfaith holiday greeting cards featuring Tevye, Augusto Pinochet’s banning of Fiddler in Chile in the mid-1970s, and references to Fiddler in The Simpsons. But, like the modest yet treasured possessions of the residents of Anatevka, there’s a lot more to these little bits then meets the eye. By page 2, Solomon has already...

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