In a dive bar in a small Israeli city, Dov Greenstein, a comedian a bit past his prime, takes the stage for his final show. Over the course of a single evening, Dov’s patter becomes a kind of memoir, taking us back into the terrors of his childhood. And in the dance between comic and audience, a deeper story begins to take shape as Dov confronts the decision that has shaped the course of his life—a story that will alter the lives of several of those in attendance. A poignant exploration of how people confront life’s capricious battering, A Horse Walks into a Bar is a searing story of loss and survival.
and identity of Palestinian Israeli citizens? Based on conversations with Palestinians in Israel, David Grossman's Sleeping on a Wire, like The Yellow Wind, is essential reading for anyone trying to understand the Middle East today.
With wit and humor, The Zig Zag Kid is a novel that explores the most fundamental questions of good and evil and speaks directly to both adults and teenagers.
Originally published in Hebrew in 1983, The Smile of the Lamb is a novel of disillusionment and a piercing examination of injustice and dishonesty.
One morning, Assaf's routine is interrupted by an absurd assignment: to find the owner of a stray yellow lab. Meanwhile, on the other side of the city, Tamar, a talented young singer with a lonely, tempestuous soul, undertakes an equally unpromising mission: to rescue a teenage drug addict from the Jerusalem underworld . . . and, eventually, to find her dog.
Someone to Run With is the most popular work to date from "a writer who has been, for nearly two decades, one of the most original and talented . . . anywhere" (The New York Times Book Review), a bestseller hailed by the Israeli press (and reform politicians such as Shimon Peres) for its mixture of fairy-tale magic, emotional sensitivity, and gritty realism. The novel explores the life of Israeli street kids-whom Grossman interviewed extensively for the novel-and the anxieties of family life in a society racked by self-doubt. Most of all, it evokes the adventure of adolescence and the discovery of love, as Tamar and Assaf, pushed beyond the limits of childhood by their quests, find themselves, and each other.
The Book of Intimate Grammar is about the alchemy of childhood, which transforms loneliness and fear into creation, and about the struggle to emerge an artist. Funny, painful, and passionate, it is a work of enormous intensity and beauty.
"We could be like two people who inject themselves with truth serum, and at long last have to tell it--the truth. I want to be able to say to myself, 'I bled truth with her,' yes, that's what I want. Be a knife for me, and I, I swear, will be a knife for you."
An awkward, neurotic seller of rare books writes a desperate letter to a beautiful stranger whom he sees at a class reunion. This simple, lonely attempt at seduction begins a love affair of words between Yair and Miriam, two married, middle-aged adults, dissatisfied with their lives, yearning for the connection that has always eluded them--and, eventually, reawakened to feelings that they thought had passed them by. Their correspondence unfolds into an exchange of their most naked confessions: of desire, childhood tragedies, joys, and humiliations.
Through the dialogue between Yair--a family man and surprisingly successful adulterer, whose complex, guarded letters reveal a life of secrets kept from the people closest to him--and Miriam, at first deceptively open and warm, who fills her life with distraction to avoid a past full of painful secrets, Be My Knife explores the nature and the limits of intimacy.
A deep departure from David Grossman's previous work, Be My Knife is his subtlest, most passionate novel yet.
Throughout his career, David Grossman has been a voice for peace and reconciliation between Israel and its Arab citizens and neighbors. In six new essays on politics and culture in Israel today, he addresses the conscience of a country that has lost faith in its leaders and its ideals. This collection, Writing in the Dark, includes an already famous speech concerning the disastrous Second Lebanon War of 2006, the war that took the life of Grossman's twenty-year-old son, Uri.
Moving, humane, clear-sighted, and courageous, touching on literature and artistic creation as well as politics and philosophy, these writings are a cri de coeur from a heroic voice of reason at a time of uncertainty and despair.
The book starts from the assumption that our troubles stem from failures of the imagination. Overcome by mass media, we are often too oblivious to fresh and original ideas. As DeMott states, "the right use of the constructive imagination increases the effectiveness of our energies, enables people to anticipate moves and countermoves, prevents them from becoming frozen into postures of intransigence or martyrdom which, though possessing a terrible beauty,' have as their main consequence the stiffening of resistance and the slowing of change." Supergrow is a sociological and political critique of various aspects of everyday life in America, one informed by a powerful moral sensibility and an Emersonian sense of self-reliance. DeMott takes pop culture seriously, but exhibits a refreshing unwillingness to "go with the flow" and get caught up in fashionable intellectual fads.
Graced with a new introduction by the author, Supergrow is an insightful work that is not afraid to tackle difficult subject matter. Whether discussing homosexuality, racism, popular music, or child rearing, Supergrow is well-reasoned, perceptive, and entertaining. As DeMott would hope, it will stimulate the imagination.
"Devastating, sustained, profoundly witty, resounding."--New York Times Book Review
"I didn't think it possible for a long time to come for any writer to say anything about black-and-white relations or lack of them that had freshness and pertinence. I was wrong."--Nat Hentoff, Village Voice
Benjamin DeMott is an essayist, novelist, and journalist. He was professor of English at Amherst College, and a consultant and writer for National Educational Television. He is the author of The Body's Cage, Killer Blues: Why Americans Can't Think Straight about Gender and Power, and You Don't Say, available from Transaction.