- Gebundene Ausgabe: 336 Seiten
- Verlag: The Dial Press (10. August 1998)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 0385323891
- ISBN-13: 978-0385323895
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 24,2 x 16,1 x 3 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 39 Kundenrezensionen
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 583.365 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
Kaaterskill Falls: A Novel (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – 10. August 1998
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Allegra Goodman's remarkable first novel intertwines the stories of three Orthodox Jewish families, each of whom is tugged between religious tradition and the secular world. The story takes place in the upstate New York town of Kaaterskill, summer Mecca for the tightly knit Kirshner sect. Model wife and mother Elizabeth Shulman pictures her community as a sort of Mont-Saint-Michel, an island both joined and separated from the outside world as if by rising and falling tides. Fascinated with what lies on the spiritual mainland, she hides behind the reassuring rhythms of religious observance, though she's inspired with a "desire, as intense as prayer," to create something all her own.
Despite her pious husband's doubts, she does, in the form of a store catering to Kaaterskill's "summer people"--a community Goodman brings memorably to life. The Shulmans' neighbor Andras Melish, a Hungarian who fled World War II and a vanished world of assimilated European Jewry, struggles to understand his young Argentinian wife Nina, whose need for tradition grows with each passing year. The ailing Rav Kirshner must decide which son will carry on in his shoes: dutiful but plodding Isaiah or his brilliant but secular brother Jeremy. Andras and Nina's daughter befriends an Arab girl, while Elizabeth and Isaac's daughter dreams in secret of Israel. Meanwhile, the town's year-round residents observe the Orthodox newcomers with bewilderment and occasional dismay.
As she proved in a warm and funny 1996 collection of stories, The Family Markowitz, Goodman is an unparalleled observer of human nature. Here, she charts with quiet assurance the daily rhythms of Kaaterskill: the meals prepared and eaten, the Holy Days observed, the ebb and flow of married life. Goodman gets all the important details right; her children's dialogue, for instance, is unerring. Above all, however, she brings to the subject of religious life a seriousness and subtlety rarely found in recent fiction. Wise was the word used again and again to describe The Family Markowitz. Applied to Kaaterskill Falls, it is no less apt.
Praise for Allegra Goodman:
"The brushstrokes seemingly casual yet sure, always the exact—and unlikely—equivalent of a shadow or reflected gleam."—Anna Shapiro, New York Newsday
"An astonishing display of virtuosity."—Los Angeles Times on Total Immersion
"Exceptionally well written: funny, wise, keenly observed....One of the most maddening and recognizable families to come along in years...an enchanting book."—Michiko Kakutani in The New York Times on The Family Markowitz
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She's unafraid to tell us what she thinks of some people in this community: "Elizabeth often thinks ill of people. She is critical; she resents them, and she can't help it . . . She accuses herself.. .of being .. slightly mean-spirited. She hates incompetence."
Well, what Jewish woman worth her kosher salt doesn't hate incompetence!
When Goodman allows Elizabeth to open up to us, we open up to her. We root for her when she wants to open a small kosher grocery store in KF and then succeeds at it. We cringe at the smallness and meaness of the new Rav when he takes away her special store.
Elizabeth reaches for what she wants, but not at the expense of her family -- they all remain supportive and loving to one another. Like Laurie Colwin's families, no matter how much anguish or loss of self-confidence one experiences, women and men in Goodman's novel bounce back to find joy in life.
There are other jewels of characterization in this book: Renee's adolescent search for her freedom and independence; her father, Andras' fighting against what he will lose when his older sister dies and his willingness to see anew his wife; His telling to Elizabeth," This is the United States of America and you can do what you want.Lesen Sie weiter... ›
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The vacation community of Kaaterskill Falls is dominated by townies and the Kirshner community of Jews, who leave Washington Heights every summer and spend the summer in this... Lesen Sie weiter...Veröffentlicht am 25. Juli 2000 von Patrick McCormack
As a Jewish girl that grew up in a mostly Christian environment, I have never been exceptionally observant. Lesen Sie weiter...Veröffentlicht am 17. Juli 2000 von A. Fee
I rarely leave a book unfinished, but that is exactly what I did with Kaaterskill Falls. I got fed up one night, and tossed it into the recycle bin! Lesen Sie weiter...Veröffentlicht am 25. Mai 2000 von Lisa Blum
As a non-Jew, I bought this book in the hope of gaining a bit of insight into the world of Orthodox Judaism. Lesen Sie weiter...Veröffentlicht am 18. Mai 2000 von UCLAgirl
When I started reading Kaaterskill Falls a few of my friends said they found it difficult to finish and would be surprised if I liked it. Lesen Sie weiter...Veröffentlicht am 4. Mai 2000 von laniea
This is probably the longest short story you'll ever read, but a novel it is not. There is no plot, no climax, no resolution, no dramatic tension. Lesen Sie weiter...Am 25. April 2000 veröffentlicht
after all the raves i heard about this book, i daresay i was abjectly disappointed. nobody had any real character; it was mainly as if everybody was described but not explored. Lesen Sie weiter...Veröffentlicht am 26. Februar 2000 von Toby J. Galinkin
This books succeeds on a number of levels. It vividly portrays life in a very conservative Jewish sect. Lesen Sie weiter...Am 17. Februar 2000 veröffentlicht
I read this book for a book club that I just joined, and although some in the club really liked it, and used words like "loved" and "hated" to describe their... Lesen Sie weiter...Am 11. Februar 2000 veröffentlicht