Konundrum: Selected Prose of Franz Kafka

Konundrum: Selected Prose of Franz Kafka

Peter Wortsman, translator, Afterword In this new selection and translation, Peter Wortsman mines Franz Kafka’s entire opus of short prose–including works published in the author’s brief lifetime, posthumously published stories, journals, and letters–for narratives that sound the imaginative depths of the great German-Jewish scribe from Prague. It is the first volume in English to consider his deeply strange, resonantly humane letters and journal entries alongside his classic short fiction and…

April 2017 Jewish Book Carnival

Jewish Book Carnival

The April Jewish Book Carnival, a monthly roundup of Jewish literary links from across the blogosphere, is being hosted by Yael Shahar at the Memory & Redemption blog. You can see the Carnival at https://www.damaged-mirror.com/springtime-reading-jewish-book-carnival/. You’ll find links to Jewish book news, book reviews and author interviews, including: S.Y. Agnon’s Passover-focused “The Celebrants,” a story within The Bridal Canopy, is the focus of a post on the Fig Tree Books…

Yaffa and Fatima: Shalom, Salaam by Fawzia Gilani-Williams

Yaffa and Fatima: Shalom, Salaam by Fawzia Gilani-Williams

Two neighbors—one Jewish, one Muslim—have always been best friends. When they both fall on hard times, can they find a way to help each other? In Fawzia Gilani’s retelling of this folktale—which has both Jewish and Arab origins—differences are not always causes for conflict and friendship can overcome any obstacle.

Vulture in a Cage: Poems by Solomon Ibn Gabirol

Vulture in a Cage: Poems by Solomon Ibn Gabirol

Raymond P. Scheindlin, translator “Vulture in a cage,” Solomon Ibn Gabirol’s own self-description, is an apt image for a poet who was obsessed with the impediments posed by the body and the material world to the realization of his spiritual ambition of elevating his soul to the empyrean. Ibn Gabirol’s poetry is enormously influential, laying the groundwork for generations of Hebrew poets who follow him–rocky and harsh, full of original…

The Girls of Usually by Lori Horvitz

The Girls of Usually by Lori Horvitz

Winner: 2015 USA Best Book Award, Gay & Lesbian Non-Fiction Honorable Mention: 2015 Rainbow Awards Finalist: Saints & Sinners Emerging Writer Award — Lori Horvitz grew up ashamed of her Eastern European Jewish roots, confused about her sexuality, and idolizing the “shiksa in her living room,” a blonde all-American girl whose photo came in a double frame and was displayed next to a family photo from a bar mitzvah. Unable…

On Turpentine Lane by Elinor Lipman

On Turpentine Lane by Elinor Lipman

At thirty-two, Faith Frankel has returned to her claustro-suburban hometown, where she writes institutional thank-you notes for her alma mater. It’s a peaceful life, really, and surely with her recent purchase of a sweet bungalow on Turpentine Lane her life is finally on track. Never mind that her fiancé is off on a crowdfunded cross-country walk, too busy to return her texts (but not too busy to post photos of…

The Sundown Kid: A Southwestern Shabbat by Barbara Bietz

The Sundown Kid: A Southwestern Shabbat by Barbara Bietz

During the early days of settling the “Wild West”, there were many Jewish families who became fearless pioneers seeking to create new communities in the desolate terrain. In this story, a young boy and his family move to the desert Southwest where they are the only Jewish family in their small town. Despite keeping busy with chores, adapting to their new home among strangers proves challenging. Every Shabbat, Mama complains…

We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter

We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter

It is the spring of 1939 and three generations of the Kurc family are doing their best to live normal lives, even as the shadow of war grows closer. The talk around the family Seder table is of new babies and budding romance, not of the increasing hardships threatening Jews in their hometown of Radom, Poland. But soon the horrors overtaking Europe will become inescapable and the Kurcs will be…

Fighting Over the Bible by Isaac Kalimi

Fighting Over the Bible by Isaac Kalimi

Jewish Interpretation, Sectarianism and Polemic from Temple to Talmud and Beyond Fighting over the Bible explores the bitter conflicts between main stream Jews and their internal and external opponents, especially between particular Jewish groups such as Pharisees, Sadducees, Qumranites, Samaritans, Rabbanites and Karaites, as well as with Christians and Muslims regarding their interpretations of Jewish Scripture. The Hebrew Bible/Old Testament is an important sacred text for all branches of the…