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All Whom I Have Loved [Hardcover]

Aharon Appelfeld , Aloma Halter

RRP: 13.86
Price: 12.69 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

6 Feb 2007
The haunting story of a Jewish family in Eastern Europe in the 1930s that prefigures the fate of the Jews during World War II.

At the center is nine-year-old Paul Rosenfeld, the beloved only child of divorced parents, through whose eyes we view a dissolving, increasingly chaotic world. Initially, Paul lives with his mother–a secular, assimilated schoolteacher, who he adores until she “betrays” him by marrying the gentile André. He is then sent to live with his father–once an admired avant-garde artist, but now reviled by the critics as a “decadent Jew,” who drowns his anger, pain, and humiliation in drink. Paul searches in vain for stability and meaning in a world that is collapsing around him, but his love for the earthy peasant girl who briefly takes care of him, the strange pull he feels towards the Jews praying in the synagogue near his home, and the fascination with which he observes Eastern Orthodox church rituals merely give him tantalizing glimpses into worlds of which he can never be a part.

The fates that Paul’s parents will meet with Paul as terrified witness–his mother, deserted by her new husband and dying of typhus; his father, gunned down while trying to stop the robbery of a Jewish-owned shop–and his own fate as an orphaned Jewish child alone in Europe in 1938 are rendered with extraordinary subtlety and power, as they foreshadow, in the heart-wrenching story of three individuals, the cataclysm that is about to engulf all of European Jewry.

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Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An astounding glimpse into the little known world! 1 Feb 2009
By Michael P. Korn - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book is an astounding glimpse into the little known world of pre-WWII Europe. Appelfeld reveals many amazing things almost as asides in the course of his narrative. Such as the admiration of many Jews for Orthodox Christian rites. The friendship between Jews and Christians. The anger of God-fearing Christians over secular Jews' abandonment of Biblical values. And ultimately the eerie sense that a Jew can never belong to any established fellowship.

Appelfeld is a lyrical writer. I could not put this book down and read it through in one evening. As a Hebrew speaker I also can attest that the English translation is unusually good, a work of art in its own right.

There are secrets, such as the similarity between Appelfeld's surname and that of his protagonist: Rosenfeld. There are many other such secrets discernable to the perceptive reader.

I finished this book with a deep sense of sadness but also with gratitude for having been able to catch a glimpse of the author's beautiful soul.

You won't be disappointed!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Amazing read 31 Aug 2009
By readernyc - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
All Whom I have Loved is a wonderful novel, not about the Shoah but about one boy's life just before it began. One might say: Nothing much happens but O so much does happen here and it is so easy to enter's the young boys' moods and moves. I just loved reading this because Appelfeld has put in his 100,000 hours into his craft of writing and has learned to prune and make reading this sad novel a pure pleasure. Highly recommend 5 stars
7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars There is no other author like Aharon Appelfeld 1 April 2007
By D. Resnick - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I have read, and own, all of Mr. Apelfeld's books in English. The prose is literate, his words are almost poetic, and all of his stories build up from serenity to crescendo. A must read for anyone who loves fine literature.
3.0 out of 5 stars A Tired Novel 2 July 2012
By Eric Maroney - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Appelfeld's "All Whom I Have Loved" is a tired novel, about tired people eking out their tired lives. The exhaustion can infect the reader too, so you should beware. Part of the problem is that Appelfeld is going over ground that he has gone over before with a more accomplished hand. So what is left is the material in this novel, which is what is left over.

Can a tired novel be good? In a sense, yes. Appelfeld accomplishes his goals in this work. We are shown the whole sweep of the life of a family, we get it all, with almost nothing left out. This is part of the problem. More could have been left out to the benefit of the novel. As a novella, this might have worked, but as it is, Appelfeld just gives us too much material for the set up.
4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Always Compelling 7 Jun 2007
By Michael L. Sanow - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I have only read four books by Appelfeld incuding his Memoir.

They are always very engaging and compelling and very moving.

I decided after reading this latest, which I liked a lot and could not put down, because it was very readable and intriguing, that I would get all of the rest of his novels that I have not read and read them this summer.
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