Browsing All posts tagged under »novels«

2 book reviews: God’s Ear by Rhoda Lerman & Sonora by Hannah Lillith Assadi

April 5, 2017

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Lerman’s sense of humor has been compared to that of Philip Roth (who is three years her senior), but in God’s Ear the humor also employs the traditional Jewish irony and Eastern European Jewish folklore of Isaac Bashevis Singer, especially his short stories. Most of Lerman’s Hasidic folktales in God’s Ear are too long to quote, but the following […]

Two book reviews: A Horse Walks into a Bar by David Grossman & Waking Lions by Ayelet Gundar-Goshen

March 1, 2017

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“At first glance Israeli novelist David Grossman’s new novel, A Horse Walks into a Bar, which as the title suggests recounts a stand-up comedian’s performance one evening at a night club in the coastal city Netanya, appears to be a complete change in tone and direction from his previous two fiction books To the End […]

Book review: The Man Who Never Stopped Sleeping by Aharon Appelfeld

February 9, 2017

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“With its universal themes of healing, recovery, creativity, and finding one’s vocation The Man Who Never Stopped Sleeping should engage the wide readership Appelfeld’s prose deserves. Readers may want to buy extra copies and donate them to VA hospitals.” — from my review in New York Journal of Books.

Book review: Recitation by Bae Suah

January 25, 2017

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“After two novellas translated into English (Nowhere to be Found, 2015 and A Greater Music, 2016, the latter reviewed in NYJB) South Korean post-modernist fiction writer Bae Suah and British translator Deborah Smith—who also translated A Greater Music and two novels by Han Kang (The Vegetarian and Human Acts)—return with an even more ambitious full […]

Book review: Judas by Amos Oz

November 27, 2016

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“For Oz’s fans and liberal Zionist fiction readers Judas is a required text whose writing is its own reward.” — from my review of in New York Journal of Books I devote more of my review to the novel’s historical background and what I infer is its contemporary political message, and consequently less to its […]

Book review: A Greater Music by Bae Suah

October 20, 2016

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“Bae’s prose alternates between detailed descriptions of everyday life and ruminative passages on music, ideas, and her character’s mental state. The late American poet William Matthews once described his taste in literature as a preference for prosy poetry and poetic prose. A Greater Music exemplifies the latter category; it requires and amply rewards rereading.” — […]

Book review: Two She-Bears by Meir Shalev

September 21, 2016

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“Is a proclivity to violence and vengeance a gender and/or regional trait? Are the minds of men more than women and/or rural folk more than city dwellers predisposed to violent acts of revenge? Or put another way, are violence and vengeance intrinsic components of the male psyche, and if so are men more likely to […]

Israeli books: A.B. Yehoshua’s The Extra features a child-free heroine

June 8, 2016

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“On the surface the new novel is about feminism and the right of women to choose not to bear children. But an underlying theme is whether liberal nationalism is an oxymoron, whether the rights of the individual (the essence of liberalism) can be reconciled with the needs of the nation.” — from my New York […]

Jewish books: in Max’s Diamonds family secrets stalk its ambitious protagonist

May 30, 2016

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“Max’s Diamonds, Jay Greenfield’s debut novel published last week by New York publisher Chickadee Prince Books, is a guilty pleasure, a book I enjoyed and could barely put down for its suspenseful serpentine plot despite its pedestrian and occasionally heavy-handed prose.” — From my examiner article (starting in the next paragraph). Also see my New […]

Books: Charles Bock and Jennifer S. Brown portray Manhattan in earlier eras

May 10, 2016

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My reviews of the two novels appear in New York Journal of Books. Read those reviews first, and then go to the next paragraph to read my additional remarks that appeared in an article in a different and now defunct publication comparing the two novels that were published the same week. At first glance two historical […]