Jewish novels

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  • #616015

    Can anyone recommend any GOOD jewish novels? I.E. Written by a frum person with normative hashkofas..

    Genre doesn’t bother me, as long as it’s well written, and has a good plot. If it’s humorous, it should actually be funny. If it’s a thriller, it should actually be exciting.

    From my (rather limited) experience, there seems to be a major dearth of good jewish novelists.

    Prove me wrong please

    #1093096

    DikDukDuck
    Participant

    The Bakers Dozen. I enjoyed them very much as a kid.

    #1093097

    ☕️coffee addict
    Participant

    i liked spider’s web

    #1093098

    pcoz
    Member

    David Zaritzky, Beyond the Sun

    #1093099

    writersoul
    Member

    When you say normative hashkafos, do you mean a specific hashkafa or do you mean not Chaim Potok? (FTR, I quite like The Chosen.)

    Because if you want to read amazing books (in Hebrew and/or English) by an Israeli Sefardi rosh yeshivat hesder, check out my thread (helpfully bumped by golfer) about Rav Haim Sabato. Very frum but not yeshivish and with Zionist themes- I don’t know if this bothers you.

    #1093100

    Avi K
    Participant

    “Fatal Judgement” by Yisroel Meir Merkin published by Artscroll. Shai Agnon’s books are also very good although I do not know how many have been translated into English.

    #1093101

    Doesn’t bother me: I don’t want any particular hashkofas, and I only said that because the only real claim I’ve heard against goyishe novels is that you “absorb” the authors worldview. I mean, if Spinoza wrote novels, I wouldn’t want to read them.

    #1093102

    Queen Bee
    Member
    #1093103

    fathousewife
    Participant

    the house on garibaldi street by isser harel.

    it is a marvelous book and squeeky clean

    #1093104

    Redleg
    Participant

    In my youth I read a lot of Louis Lamour western books. Now, no one will ever mistake them for great literature, but the recurrent themes in the books were loyalty, honesty, protecting the poor and weak, knowing the right thing and having the courage to do it. What’s wrong with that “world view”?

    #1093105

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    Redleg, I’ve never read those books, but it’s entirely possible that they’re fine, if what you describe are the only themes.

    However, this can’t be said for the vast majority of secular literature, and how do we determine which books are in the small minority?

    #1093106

    Redleg
    Participant

    DY, Yeah, that’s about it. I expect that I’m a good deal older than you so this may not compute for you. They are the literary equivalent of Hopalong Cassidy, Roy Rogers and Gene Autrey. The bad guys are bad and the good guys always win in the end. Good triumphs over evil, etc.

    P.S. In those old TV westerns, you could always tell the good guys from the bad guys because the good guys wore white hats and the bad guys always wore black. A few summers ago I was walking to shul one Shabbos and, as is my custom in the summer, I was wearing a light colored straw hat. One of the little kids along the way asked, “Mr. Redleg, why are you wearing a white hat?” My instant response was,”because I’m a good guy.” Went right over his head.

    #1093107

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    Cute.

    You are older than me, but I have no problem accepting that TV and movies were a lot cleaner than they are now. I don’t think it would have been considered acceptable in some frum homes to have a TV and watch movies had the changeover not been gradual.

    #1093108

    a mamin
    Participant

    ReVa Pomerantz writes beautifully!

    #1093109

    golfer
    Participant

    Avi K, I haven’t read any of Shai Agnon’s books. I always lumped him together with other Hebrew writers of the 20th century whose works are written from a very secular point of view. Much of their hashkafa is not so kosher (kefira is a word I was trying to avoid, but it’s the word that might best describe their ideas). Was Agnon different? Are his books worth reading?

    #1093110

    🍫Syag Lchochma
    Participant

    Chaya Hirsch may be frum but her books are romance novels. I wouldn’t read them or recommend them and I wonder if calling it an orthodox romance is misleading or just chutzpadik.

    #1093111

    Lashon harah

    #1093112

    I really don’t know if he’s what you’re looking for,

    but have you tried Meir Uri Gottesman? (To be honest,

    I haven’t read too much by him, and nothing recent.)

    (Oh, and The House on Garibaldi Street isn’t a novel.)

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