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Uncle Peretz Takes Off

by Yaakov Shabtai
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Product Details

  • Publisher: Overlook Hardcover
  • Publishing date: 02/09/2004
  • Language: Français
  • ISBN-13: 9781585673407
  • ISBN: 1585673404

Synopsis

With the publication of his Past Continuous in 1983, Yaakov Shabtai gained the most prominent place in the canon of modern Jewish literature. New York Times critic Alan Lelchuk praised its portrait of contemporary Israeli society as "the most prodigious (and probably most realistic) in Hebrew fiction."

The stories in Uncle Peretz Takes Off, the first English language collection of Shabtai's short fiction, evoke the Zionist frontier spirit while capturing the shift from old world religiosity to new world secularism. Originally published in Hebrew in 1972, the collection is bookended by two linked stories chronicling the deaths of the narrator's grandparents and the corresponding loss of Jewish traditions. Several other linked stories feature the narrator's uncles, energetic men in the grip of ideals and passions (Zionism, communism, socialism, entrepreneurialism). Uncle Shmuel tries to make his fortune with "semi-automatic henhouses," while Uncle Fink juggles four women and the dream of building a Palestinian traveling circus.

With unparalleled lyricism and humanity, Shabtai's stories embody the comedy, energy, and tragedy of the early years of Zionism.


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  • A bit of a déjà vù
    From Amazon

    Little can be said "against" such a writer as Shabtai. Yet, for those who have already read "Past Continuous", this collection will sound very familiar: too familiar. Many of the characters and situations are framed in different contexts but remain the same. The in-depth description of the human soul, however, together with the masterful depiction of places, make the book a very pleasant reading.

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