Kerfe's Reviews > The Yiddish Policemen's Union

The Yiddish Policemen's Union by Michael Chabon
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's review
Aug 22, 2008

it was amazing
bookshelves: fiction
Read in August, 2008

A noir detective story, set in an alternate past, where, after World War II, the Jews are settled in a Yiddish Alaska rather than a Hebrew Middle East. But no one's calling it a homeland. Chabon's Jews try to forget, but are ultimately forced to confront physically and mentally, the fate life has in store for all: it's only a 60-year lease.

Along the way we are reminded that religious radicalism of all persuasions is a self-centered enterprise, promising only more death and destruction; that there are very few of the truly good and innocent, and that they tend to be eaten and destroyed quickly by the rest of us; that our government is run by assholes who consider what is in our best interests to be way down on their list; that no good deed goes unpunished and that humans have a very hard time accepting or even valuing the miracles and blessings that do come their way (grateful? thankful? are you kidding?); and that sometimes it's better to fight the losing battle than to give in to an inevitable fate.

But most of all it's an engrossing who-done-it, peopled by wise-cracking Yids and Natives of all persuasions. A good read.
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message 1: by Nina (new)

Nina Kerfe, I'll have to try reading this one again...the first time I just couldn't get into it and gave up after about twenty pages.

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