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What God Wants

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An award-winning collection of interrelated stories, first published in Australia, brings together middle-class men and women who share a community and the same terrible childhood memory--their parents were all Holocaust survivors.


First published January 1, 2004

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Lily Brett

35 books112 followers

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5 stars
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22 (40%)
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15 (27%)
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Displaying 1 - 4 of 4 reviews
552 reviews21 followers
December 3, 2014
Not nearly as good as Too Many Men. While a good author with a lot to say, I found this book to be too crude, with too little to say to justify it.
Profile Image for Maree Kimberley.
Author 5 books25 followers
May 27, 2016
I adore Lily Brett's writing. The first novel of hers I read was You Gotta Have Balls, which I loved. What God Wants was written around 10 years before "Balls" (I've read most of her novels out of order) but has that same great sense of humour that may well be a particular mix of Australian-ness & Jewishness.
Brett's dialogue is fantastic. The conversations between characters are both completely mad and totally believable. The characters obsess over family - husbands, wives, children and parents - but mostly parents. It's really interesting to read this novel now, in light of what we know about inter-generational trauma. Either Brett was an early researcher in this area, or she instinctively knew to write about the trauma experienced by the children of holocaust survivors. This trauma is central to the book, yet the book is, above all, hilariously funny (at least, it was to me). In among all the horror - and there is plenty of it in this book -there is an irrepressible joy for life and a healthy dose of ridiculousness. Brett's characters are mostly able to laugh at themselves and their inherent craziness, despite bearing the legacy of unspeakable crimes against humanity.
What God Wants made me laugh and cry, it is both joyously silly and intensely sad. A fantastic read that still holds up well after more than 20 years. Go find a copy & read it!
Profile Image for Mellissa.
55 reviews5 followers
December 12, 2008
I expected more for a book about the Australian children of Holocaust survivors. I liked most of the characters, their lives were interesting. But it didn't need the constant use of the F-word and the Jackie Collins-style sex scenes. The book redeemed itself with the last two stories, but still...
Displaying 1 - 4 of 4 reviews

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