Hardcover Õ Kaddishcom PDF/EPUB È

The Pulitzer finalist delivers his best work yet a brilliant streamlined comic novel reminiscent of early Philip Roth and of his own most masterful stories about a son's failure to say Kaddish for his fatherLarry is an atheist in a family of orthodox Memphis Jews When his father dies it is his responsibility as the surviving son to recite the Kaddish the Jewish prayer for the dead every day for eleven months To the horror and dismay of his mother and sisters Larry refuses thus imperiling the fate of his father's soul To appease them and in penance for failing to mourn his father correctly he hatches an ingenious if cynical plan hiring a stranger through a website called kaddishcom to recite the daily prayer and shepherd his father's soul safely to restThis is Nathan Englander's freshest and funniest work to date a satire that touches lightly and with unforgettable humor on the conflict between religious and secular worlds and the hypocrisies that run through both A novel about atonement about spiritual redemption and about the soul sickening temptations of the internet which like God is everywhere


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    “Kaddishcom” is a novel but its first part serves as another reminder of Nathan Englander’s extraordinary skill as a short story writer Set 20 years before the rest of the book it describes a contentious family gathering following a patriarch’s death Larry — the black sheep — has come from Brooklyn to stay with his Orthodox sister in Memphis as they sit shiva Despite hearing the “quiet muttering stream of well wishers” he feels harshly appraised “I want them not to judge me just because I left their stupid world” he hisses at his sister in the kitchen These two siblings lash out at each other with words sharpened by grief Larry insists he be allowed to mourn in his own way His sister upbraids him for thoughtlessly ignoring their traditions “It’s no reason to treat me like a freak” he cries “They’re just stupid rules”But of course they’re not just stupid rules — not to his sister and not even to Larry One of the fascinating points Englander explores in “kaddishcom” is the way ardent followers and angry apostates both regard religious tradition with awe — but from different sides “Sometimes the rejection is a way to let people know that the thing we reject truly matters” Larry says much later “It is its own kind of faith even if it’s the opposite of faith”Larry and his sister may lose control but Englander To read the rest of this review go to The Washington Posthttpswwwwashingtonpostcomentert