Page 74 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 23

Basic HTML Version

J
e w i s h
B
o o k
A
n n u a l
6 8
B
rod
, M
a x
.
Reubeni, prince of
t h e
Jews. New York, Alfred A. Knopf, 1928.
340 p.
Reubeni lived in the 16th century and was a messianic visionary
who was a self-styled Prince of the Jews. He visited the Pope and
various kings and was accepted by many Jews as a messiah. In the
end, his close disciple Salomo Molcho prefers death to conversion
and Reubeni dies mysteriously, some say by poison. Mr. Brod has
written a novel about this interesting time and these fascinating Jews.
* B
u b e r
, M
a r t in
.
For the sake of heaven. Philadelphia, Jewish Publication
Society, 1945. 314 p.
The great interpreter of Hasidism has written a novel set during the
period of the Napoleonic wars at the end of the 18th and the beginning
of the 19th centuries. Most of the action takes place in Poland and
Hungary, with two Hasidic rabbis in conflict with one another. One
wants the wars to continue so that the Jewish people can be re-est-
ablished in Palestine; the other prefers to wait for redemption by
the hand of God. Hasidic lore is woven into the tale.
* E
l io t
, G
eorge
.
Daniel Deronda. New York, Harper Torchbooks, 1961.
612 p.
This is one of the earliest novels in which Jewish nationalism
was espoused. Written in 1876, it is about an Englishman unaware
of his Jewish ancestry. He meets a Jew named Mordecai Cohen, a
spokesman for Jewish national survival, and marries Cohen’s sister.
When Cohen dies, the hero takes up the torch. This novel had a
great influence on Zionist leaders and readers.
F
eu c h tw a n g e r
, L
io n
.
Power. New York, Viking, 1926. 424
p .
This is the story of “the Jew Suss,” who had become the financial
director of the ruler of the duchy of Wurttemberg in the early 18th
century. Josef Siiss Oppenheimer involves himself in court intrigue
and comes to a tragic end when his king lusts after the one thing
the Jewish adviser loves—his chaste daughter.
G
a e r
, J
o se ph
.
Heart upon the rock. New York, Dodd, Mead, 1950. 214 p.
A reflective narrative about a Jewish woman, Hannah, living in
a Russian village in the time of the Czar. Four of her children have
gone to America; another is in exile and still another is looking to
new horizons. Meanwhile, the author tells us of life in a long-ago and
far-away world.
K
aczer
, I
le s
.
The siege. New York, Dial, 1953, 594 p.
A novel about Jews living in 19th century Hungary. It traces the events
in the family life of a Jewish innkeeper and how the Jews of the village
attempt to gain entry to Otvar, a neighboring town barred to Jews.
L
ew is o h n
, L
udw ig
.
Renegade. New York, Dial, 1942. 333 p.
A story of 18th century Paris, where the Jew, Joshua Vidal, attempts
to reject his heritage for the larger world and love. He discovers
that he cannot escape from his people and, in the end, finds that
he and the woman he loves can live in serenity only as Jews.
* M
il l e r
, D
a v id
.
The chain and the link. Cleveland, World, 1951. 368
p .
The hero of this novel, set in the time of Napoleon, is a Jewish
scholar named Ezra. But the real “hero” is the Lithuanian-Jewish
community, which is described in detail by the author. This was
to have been the first volume of a trilogy, but no other novels by
Mr. Miller have been published since.