The Book of Mischief by Steve Stern
New and Selected Stories

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The Book of Mischief, is a wonderfully imaginative group of tales steeped in Jewish folklore and inspired by such writers as Sholem Aleichem, Isaac Bashevis Singer, Bernard Malamud...there is even some Borscht Belt humor sprinkled throughout.
-NY Journal of Books

Synopsis

"In the 25 years since [Stern] published his first book, younger Jewish writers have run with a similar shtick . . . But Stern was there first." —The Toronto Globe and Mail

The Book of Mischief triumphantly showcases twenty-five years of outstanding work by one of our true masters of the short story. Steve Stern's stories take us from the unlikely old Jewish quarter of the Pinch in Memphis to a turn-of-thecentury immigrant community in New York; from the market towns of Eastern Europe to a down-at-the-heels Catskills resort. Along the way we meet a motley assortment of characters: Mendy Dreyfus, whose bungee jump goes uncannily awry; Elijah the prophet turned voyeur; and the misfit Zelik Rifkin, who discovers the tree of dreams. Perhaps it's no surprise that Kafka's cockroach also makes an appearance in these pages, animated as they are by instances of bewildering transformation. The earthbound take flight, the meek turn incendiary, the powerless find unwonted fame. Weaving his particular brand of mischief from the wondrous and the macabre, Stern transforms us all through the power of his brilliant imagination.

 

About Steve Stern

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Steve Stern, winner of the National Jewish Book Award, is the author of several previous novels and story collections, including The Frozen Rabbi and The Wedding Jester. He teaches at Skidmore College in upstate New York.
 
Published September 4, 2012 by Graywolf Press. 384 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Book of Mischief
All: 2 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 0

NY Times

Good
Reviewed by Nathaniel Rich on Sep 28 2012

...Stern is one of our most joyful writers. Though his characters may be prone to despair and disappointment, his vision of the world — and “the other world” — is resolutely affirmative.

Read Full Review of The Book of Mischief: New and... | See more reviews from NY Times

NY Journal of Books

Good
Reviewed by Ariel Balter on Sep 04 2012

The Book of Mischief, is a wonderfully imaginative group of tales steeped in Jewish folklore and inspired by such writers as Sholem Aleichem, Isaac Bashevis Singer, Bernard Malamud...there is even some Borscht Belt humor sprinkled throughout.

Read Full Review of The Book of Mischief: New and... | See more reviews from NY Journal of Books

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