Hardcover: 328 pages
Publisher: Algonquin Books; 1st edition (October 5, 2004)
Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 1.2 x 9.3 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (83 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #434,889 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #70 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Antiques & Collectibles > Books #387 in Books > Biographies & Memoirs > Ethnic & National > Jewish #577 in Books > Literature & Fiction > History & Criticism > Books & Reading > General
This is a superb book. I received it as an unexpected gift and started reading it without any expectations, but almost immediately was hooked. I am a longtime bibliophile and normally do focus on books and collecting and thought I have read about and studied everything about books and am therefore somewhat jaded, but in this fascinating story the author, the individuals, and the people as a whole captivated me enormously.To summarize, Aaron Lansky as a young student decides to help save a vanishing literature by collecting as many Yiddish books as he can. He then uses his vast enthusiasm, knowledge and energy to accomplish his most worthy goal. Scouring the country, he meets many elderly people with old books. But he mostly tells their stories which he learns in kitchens over ethnic food - every book comes with a story and some `nosh'. These people all have had compelling, human, tragic, funny and enchanting lives. And the Yiddish literature also comes through in his prose. He covers the general history of Yiddish language and literature in a very un-painful and fascinating way. Yiddish was regarded by intelligentsia as `common' and so the literature was not prized the way authentic Hebrew texts were; in addition Yiddish was a product of the Diaspora and symbolic of subjugation and ancient deprivations. Thus in the later 20th century, most of these books were lightly regarded and often discarded. When Mr. Lansky began his quest these vibrant other-worldly books were in danger of being lost. Although most modern readers only know of Nobel prize winner Isaac Bashevis Singer, there were equally talented authors in all fields of literature who wrote in this lost language of a lost world.
Outwitting History: The Amazing Adventures of a Man Who Rescued a Million Yiddish Books Million Dollar Ebay Business From Home - A Step By Step Guide: Million Dollar Ebay Business From Home - A Step By Step Guide Marketing the Million Dollar Practice: 27 Steps to Follow to grow 1/2 Million a Year Outwitting Squirrels: 101 Cunning Stratagems to Reduce Dramatically the Egregious Misappropriation of Seed from Your Birdfeeder by Squirrels Outwitting the Gestapo Outwitting Critters Jokes For Kids - Joke Books : Funny Books : Kids Books : Books for kids age 9 12 : Best Jokes 2016 (kids books, jokes for kids, books for kids 9-12, ... funny jokes, funny jokes for kids) (Volume 1) History: Human History in 50 Events: From Ancient Civilizations to Modern Times (World History, History Books, People History) (History in 50 Events Series Book 1) History: British History in 50 Events: From First Immigration to Modern Empire (English History, History Books, British History Textbook) (History in 50 Events Series Book 11) The New Yiddish Kitchen: Gluten-Free and Paleo Kosher Recipes for the Holidays and Every Day Arthur Schwartz's Jewish Home Cooking: Yiddish Recipes Revisited Proletpen: America's Rebel Yiddish Poets Jewish Warsaw Between the Wars: 20 stories translated from the Yiddish A Dictionary Of Yiddish Slang & Idioms Drek!: The Real Yiddish Your Bubbe Never Taught You Rescued Rescued Tails The Freedom Line: The Brave Men and Women Who Rescued Allied Airmen from the Nazis During World War II The Rescued Soul: The Writing Journey for the Healing of Incest and Family Betrayal Rescued by a Highlander: Alex and Maddie (Clan Grant series Book 1)