Hot time for reading – even Fahrenheit 451*

Hot time for reading – even Fahrenheit 451*

It’s 89 degrees Fahrenheit today and Spring has suddenly become Summer, despite the calendar indicating otherwise. Even though it seems this season isn’t as leisurely as in bygone years, I hope all of you will make time to read for pleasure in the next few weeks.

I’m tempted to catch up on my professional reading, especially the e-newsletters that flood my Inbox in a never-ending deluge of timely information (that obviously becomes less urgent as time goes by). But just as I am determined to complete more steps each week as an enthusiastic member of the new IU East Walking Club, I am resolved to read one book for pleasure each week. I’m starting this week with The Frozen Rabbi by Steve Stern. Perhaps I chose it for the cool title (hah, pun intended) or because I couldn’t resist it based on the starred review in Booklist:

“Stern’s uproarious and trouncing romp through the anguish and ironies of the Jewish diaspora matches mysticism with mayhem, beatitude with organized crime, creativity with crassness. The madcap, at times, surreal action revolves around Rabbi Eliezer ben Zephyr, whose out-of-body journeys to the realm of the divine result in his being frozen in a block of ice in the Jewish Pale in 1889, a frigid relic that becomes one family’s problematic inheritance. In scenes of vivid drama and burlesque comedy on the same epic scale as Stern’s Angel of Forgetfulness (2005), the rabbi-on-ice is transported through a pogrom and across the Atlantic under the guardianship of a raven-haired woman protectively disguised as a man, who finds sanctuary with the sweet-natured, hunchbacked inventor Shmerl Karp in the roiling Lower East Side. Finally, in 1999, the “great thaw” brings the reanimated rabbi and misfit teen Bernie Karp together in a suburb of Memphis, Tennessee, where the holy man, enthralled by America’s TV-stoked capitalism, opens his profitable and controversial House of Enlightenment. Stern elevates his virtuoso storytelling and whirling magical satire to cosmic heights in this lovingly irreverent and revelatory novel of the timeless conflict between the sacred and the profane, and the perpetual search for home and meaning. –Donna Seaman”


I’ll let you know in my next blog entry whether I found home and meaning.
Meanwhile, whether you curl up with a paperback under a shade tree, click on an e-book via your laptop, or glean words on the screen of a Kindle or I-pad…do what summer seems best for… and READ!


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