Descripción de editorial
A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK • From the author of The Chalk Artist, this beloved collection of linked stories is “one of the most astute and engaging books about American family life to have come our way in quite a while” (The Boston Globe).
In this beloved collection of linked short stories, Allegra Goodman writes with wit and compassion about three generations of Markowitzes: Rose, the displaced, cantankerous matriarch; her devoted son, Henry, an aesthete living abroad; his younger brother, Ed, a Georgetown scholar specializing in terrorism; Ed’s wife, Sarah, a housewife with stalled literary ambitions; and their eldest daughter, Miriam, whose budding Orthodoxy bewilders her parents. Through the rhythm of ordinary family rituals—weddings, holiday dinners, hospital vigils—Goodman breathes extraordinary life into a cast of characters who reverberate with authenticity and never fail to speak their minds.
Praise for The Family Markowitz
“These stories sound like no one else’s. . . . Goodman is brilliant at capturing the clutter of both interior and exterior life.”—Los Angeles Times
“Entertaining . . . The Family Markowitz has great consistency and charm.”—Claire Messud, The New York Times Book Review
“A revelation . . . Goodman’s prose has a steady, silent reserve that always indicates she has bigger things in mind.”—Dwight Garner, Salon
“One of the most astute and engaging books about American family life to have come our way in quite a while . . . [Allegra Goodman] has a gift for conveying the peculiar subtleties of Jewish culture.”—The Boston Globe
“Funny and wise and keenly observed . . . one of the most engaging, maddening, and recognizable families to come along in years . . . an enchanting book.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
Goodman's voice is fresh and distinctive as she limns a wry, funny, touching portrait of an American Jewish family in a brilliantly observed, lovingly rendered novel composed of interlocking stories. Rose Markowitz, stubborn, outspoken, kvetching, a survivor and an individualist whose youth was spent in Vienna and London during WWII, is 73, living with her second husband in Manhattan, when we first meet her. He dies, and for most of the book, Rose, now in her 80s, copes with lonely widowhood in Venice, Calif., where her bachelor son, Henry, an art gallery manager, lures her to live. But soon he splits for Oxford, England, to become an Anglophile scholar and aesthete. Rose's other son, Ed, a Georgetown University historian of the Middle East and media pundit on terrorism, is, in Henry's eyes, a rank apologist for the PLO. Sarah, Ed's novelist/poet wife, is a frustrated fame-seeker, distracted from her writing by having to raise four children. Their daughter Miriam, a Harvard Med student, surprises her secular, liberal parents by embracing Orthodox ritual observance. Goodman (Total Immersion), who has published sections of this work in the New Yorker and Commentary, combines delicious comic set pieces with deeper meditations and conversations on Jewish identity, God, frazzled relationships and the breakdown of family life.