(Vintage Books; April 2013)
When the Frankels gather one Fourth of July weekend at their home in the Berkshires, there are more fireworks than usual. In The World Without You, their earlier selves are practically bouncing off the walls, colliding with ongoing sibling rivalries, marital spats and their memories of Leo. Add to this mix Thisbe, Leo’s young widow, who arrives with a secret of her own. The winner of the 2012 Edward Lewis Wallant Award for Jewish American Fiction and a Finalist for the 2012 National Jewish Book Award, Joshua Henkin directs the MFA program in fiction writing at Brooklyn College.
Zinsky the Obscure
(Fromite Press; April 2013)
No one, it seems, cares that 30-year-old bachelor Ariel Zinsky has yet to recover from his abusive childhood. Zinsky, however, is sure that his narrative matters and sets out to prove it by writing an autobiography. While he behaves in ways that continually jeopardize his romantic life, he sees himself as the hero of his own coming-of-age story. Like Zinsky, Ilan Mochari worked as a waiter in the Boston area to support himself. Unlike Zochari, Mochari has a B.A. in English from Yale, and contributes to Cogniscenti, the online magazine for Boston’s NPR station.
(Amazon Publishing; May 2013)
To the library of novels about the turbulence that resides on every suburban street, add Liz Rosenberg’s latest novel, The Laws of Gravity. With the lyrical grace of the poet that she is, Rosenberg explores how one decision can bind or break people. The question of whether “blood is thicker than water” leads two once close but now embattled cousins to the courtroom of Judge Sol Richter. Rosenberg, who won the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching at SUNY-Binghamton and serves as The Boston Globe’s book columnist, introduces us in a brilliant way to three Jewish families and the life-altering challenges that change them.