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The Family Mashber by Der Nister
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The Family Mashber

Best Seller
The Family Mashber by Der Nister
Paperback $22.95
May 20, 2008 | ISBN 9781590172797

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  • May 20, 2008 | ISBN 9781590172797

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"Pinkhas Kahanovitsh, who wrote under the pseudonym Der Nister (or ‘The Hidden One’), was a master of the surreal…What is astounding about this book, despite its extreme realism, is how it achieves a kind of surrealistic magic of its own. Despite its outwardly censor-approved story, the novel contains a hidden commentary on coercive belief and, through its breathtaking depth of detail, an almost supernatural resurrection of a Jewish life that failed to prove its right to exist. Reading this massive novel is the closest anyone can come today to living in that world." –Dara Horn, Foreword Magazine

"The restoration to the light of this extraordinary novel is an act of literary and cultural redemption. More than that, the restitution of this Yiddish masterwork-as life-saturated as the other great Russian novels–is an augmentation of world literature." -Cynthia Ozick

"Like his contemporary and friend, Marc Chagall, Kahanovitch depicts Russian Jewish life 100 years ago…Leonard Wolf’s translation is stylish…it expresses beautifully a poetic turn-of-the-century novel…We should see Kahanovitch posthumously rehabilitated…one of [the Soviet Union’s] outstanding literary figures." –The Financial Times

"The great achievement of The Family Mashber is to have re-created with such passionate objectivity, in all its complexity and breadth, a world what exists now only in this enduring memorial to it…a book that leads us…to cross thresholds, most of all the threshold of our own experience; to enter in and be moved like him by the ‘spirit of celebration.’" –The New York Review of Books

"This scrupulously detailed, grandly plotted family novel-a realistic work that deals with questions of both faith and commerce while managing mystical overtones-compels attention and admiration." -National Yiddish Book Center

"This vast mural of the Ukraine, written in Yiddish 50 years ago and only now published in English…is notable for its depth and breadth of characterization, noise and variety, coarse comedy and Goya-esque depiction of jostling, importunate mobs. Readers won’t soon forget the mansions and hovels, refuse-strewn alleys and fragrant courts of the market town so vividly re-created in this powerful novel." –Publishers Weekly

"An extraordinary novel." -Alan Sillitoe, The Sunday Times

"A fascinating read." –Guardian

"Earthily realistic and powerfully transcendental…it holds much reward for anyone attracted to the reincarnation of a culture now disappeared, but brought to life by a passionate sense of tribal history." –The Herald

"One of the masterpieces of Soviet fiction." –The Modern Jewish Canon

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