Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
Every Friday morning My Machberet presents an assortment of Jewish news, primarily of the literary variety, from around the Web.

  • It’s always an occasion when a new issue of The Ilanot Review becomes available. The Winter 2013 issue is now online. Its theme: “Foreign Bodies.”
  • Another accolade for Francesca Segal’s The Innocents: the National Jewish Book Award for Fiction. (Read the awards press release and my earlier impressions of the book.)
  • The January 2013 Jewish Book Carnival went live this week, hosted by People of the Books.
  • Novelist Ilan Mochari has some advice for Philip Roth’s biographer. In related news, registration for the upcoming [email protected] conference is now open.
  • Finally: This is a special week for my story collection, Quiet Americans. Read all about it.
  • Shabbat shalom!

    Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen

    Every Friday morning My Machberet presents an assortment of Jewish news, primarily of the literary variety, from around the Web.

  • I’m looking forward to delving into this special “Writing from Israel” poetry and translation feature from The Bakery.
  • Thrilled to see this interview with my former poetry teacher, Matthew Lippman, on The Whole Megillah.
  • See also an interview with Israeli poet Moshe Dor and translator Barbara Goldberg, courtesy of Moment magazine’s blog.
  • On Tablet: New translations of powerful Holocaust poetry by Chava Rosenfarb.
  • D.G. Myers interprets Howard Jacobson – and reviews Jacobson’s Zoo Time – for Jewish Ideas Daily.
  • Shabbat shalom.

    Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
    Every Friday morning My Machberet presents an assortment of Jewish literary news from around the Web.

  • Mark your calendar for next Wednesday’s Jewish Book Council/Jewcy Twitter Book Club. The featured guest is Jami Attenberg, author (most recently) of The Middlesteins.
  • Tablet magazine’s correspondent met recently with Shani Boianjiu in Israel; the result is this profile of the author of The People of Forever Are Not Afraid.
  • Crash course in the history of Jews in Russia, courtesy of Lea Zeltserman (responding, it must be said, to a problematic remark made by Shimon Peres).
  • Want to win a copy of the English translation of Eduardo Halfon’s The Polish Boxer? Read (and comment) here, by Sunday afternoon.
  • The latest issue of JewishFiction.net went live this week. From its editor, Dr. Nora Gold: “In this all-women’s issue, you will find 14 wonderful works of fiction, originally written in Yiddish, Spanish, Hebrew, and English, by authors originating from the Ukraine, Argentina, Israel, England, Canada, and the United States. And with Chanukah just around the corner, we bring you also a Chanukah story from Israel (“Roller Coaster”).” (I’m proud to say that I am the author of one of those 14 works!)
  • And last, but not least, I’m about a week into my gig as the Association of Jewish Libraries Writer-in-Residence. Come join the fun (and discussions) on the AJL Facebook page!
  • Shabbat shalom–and warm wishes for a joyous Hanukkah.

    My Year in Jewish Books (2012 edition)

    Last year, I found it useful (and kind of fun) to look back on “my year in Jewish books.” So, borrowing some of the same introductory wording, I’m going to attempt to do something similar for 2012.

    Reviewing my reading for 2012 (thank you, Goodreads!), I can see that I do not and would not ever limit my reading to “Jewish books” exclusively. (By the way, I define “Jewish books” as books with substantive Jewish content/themes. In my view, non-Jewish authors can write “Jewish books.” And Jewish authors can write books that don’t strike me as particularly Jewish. I read several of those books this year, too.)

    But this year, as usual, I did read quite a few books that fall within the “Jewish book” category. And, as an advocate for Jewish literature, I’m proud of that.

    Below, you will find these books presented in the order in which I read them. (more…)

    Jewish Literary Links for Shabbat

    Photo Credit: Reut Miryam Cohen
    Every Friday morning My Machberet presents an assortment of Jewish literary news from around the Web.

  • Did you miss the Jewish Book Council/Jewcy Twitter Book Chat with Shani Boianjiu last week? Don’t worry: You can read the transcript.
  • And if you haven’t yet listened to the audio recording of Etgar Keret’s recent lecture and discussion at Baruch College of The City University of New York, you’ll find it here (audio file expires December 25!).
  • Attention, bloggers who cover Jewish books! The Jewish Book Carnival wants to hear from you (especially this month, when I’ll be hosting here on My Machberet). More info here.
  • Thoughts on poetry, teaching, and t’shuvah, from Richard Chess.
  • Still more about Philip Roth’s proclaimed retirement.
  • “I so wanted to hate it, but sad to say, Hope: A Tragedy is one of the funniest comic novels in several years—perhaps the funniest ever by a non-Jewish Jew.” So writes D.G. Myers in a review of Shalom Auslander’s novel.
  • Finally, please excuse the self-promotional portions of these links, but a couple of posts I want to be sure you didn’t miss this week, both here on My Machberet and on my “other” blog, Practicing Writing. First up: some thoughts on “Jewish fiction,” inspired by Tablet’s new fiction series. And then: some news from the Association of Jewish Libraries (and me!).
  • Shabbat shalom.

    Listen to Etgar Keret Read from “Suddenly, A Knock on the Door”

    On November 15, I had the great pleasure and privilege of attending an event featuring Israeli author Etgar Keret. Held at Baruch College of The City University of New York, the session was titled “The Real and the Imagined: Talk and Reading with Etgar Keret,” and it featured readings from Keret’s latest collection, Suddenly, A Knock on the Door. Directly after the reading, Keret headed to the airport for a flight home to Israel, interrupting his tour to return to be with his family during Operation Pillar of Defense.

    A friend had hoped to join me at Baruch, but that didn’t work out. So I took my trusty iPhone–equipped with its iTalk application–along instead. And I recorded the session to share via e-mail with my friend after the fact. (My learning how to e-mail a large audio file could be a story in itself, but I’ll spare you those details.)

    The event’s organizer contacted Keret’s agent and asked if it would be OK for me to post the audio publicly. To my delight, the answer is YES!

    So, I happily present to you: Etgar Keret. (If you have the new collection and want to follow along as Keret reads from it, you can go ahead bookmark “What Animal Are You?” and “Healthy Start”–both of these stories were translated by Miriam Shlesinger, by the way–before you click here to begin listening.)

    NB: I couldn’t upload the file directly to my website–it’s too large. So I’ve attempted to use the file-sharing program that helped me send the file to my friend. I hope it works! (The file will expire on December 25, so please listen soon!)