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Jew Suss Paperback – 1959

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Paperback, 1959
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Product details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Arrow Books (1959)
  • ASIN: B000SZ7EE2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,692,566 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By daveyp. on 28 Oct. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Never mind the Mills & Boon cover, this book is both a marvellous piece of story-telling (although not entirely fictional, being based on a real-life historical episode) and great literature. If you seek a novel that paints people in black and white then this is not the book for you. But not in grey either, it is far too colourful a book for that.

Jew Suss himself is a tragic figure...masterful but chronically flawed; both raised up and brought down by his own ambition and greed. A lover of power, of money and of women, he shamelessly uses and abuses all of these and in so doing makes himself many deadly enemies.

The closest that the novel gets to a hero, and here the word is stretched to the limit, is Rabbi Gabriel, the kabbalist. This gruff and surly man, coming and going without announcement or warning, is a seeker out of hidden paths, forced to sojourn in this troubled world, but whose mind is set upon ancient mysteries and arcane secrets.

The villain of the story is Duke Karl Alexander, an elemental man, unable to show restraint or control his passions. Yet even he is a victim of circumstances, troubled as he is by a recurring dream in which he finds himself hand in hand with Jew Suss and Rabbi Gabriel, shuffling along in a strange dance.

In this mysterious cosmic dance, so I suspect, lies the key to what our lives are really about, as to why we are really here. Or if not the key, then at least a clue. As both Duke Karl Alexander and Jew Suss discover to their cost, we cannot escape from this dance, even if we want to.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By -tjm- on 29 Jan. 2010
Format: Hardcover
I bought my copy in a second hand bookshop on the Charing cross road, London. Very impressed. Traces the rise and fall of the Finance Minister to the German state of Wurttemberg, Joseph Oppenheimer, under the rule of the dissolute Karl Alexander. This book was adapted for the big screen by the Nazis who gave it an anti-semitic slant, but the writer Feuchtwanger, was Jewish and, if anything, the book is pro-semitic, and treats Oppenheimer sympathetically as he gradually falls out of favour with his Gentile employer. This is a classic novel from the mid 20th Century, which predates the atrocities of the Second World War, and, to an extent, anticipates the mind set that prompted them.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D. Heaney on 13 May 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Excellently written; Feuchtwanger paints a marvellous picture of mittel Europe in the 18th century and the machinations of courtesans, princes, financiers and the rest!
I imagine the jew, Suss as the first Rothchild.
Interestingly the Nazis made a propoganda film of the same name where Jew Suss is vilified as base, detestable and loathsome. Whereas for me, Feuchtwanger shows a nobility of purpose and culture in Suss and of Judaism generally.
The Nazis banned the book and Feuchtwanger was fortunate to escape to the USA where he wrote Josephus, the Jewish War, which I heartily recommend
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By Lada on 21 Jan. 2008
Format: Hardcover
The story of a successful Jewish royal accountant in fuedal Germany is not just a great intriguing plot. It is also a guide to different corners of Jewish culture, religion, and social struggle at the early stage of Jewish-Christian co-existence.
Jew Suss has to make a choice; which will he choose: personal interest and ambitions or Jewish tradition and the family? Being a serious figure in the state he was still not able to predict certain things, which forced his choice. And although he was the best accountant in the entire country he hasn't worked out the price of life values.
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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 28 April 2000
Format: Paperback
Very good historique romance of the imagination, rather than biographie. Lot of informations and moral traditions.
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