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A World Full of Strangers

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  409 Ratings  ·  25 Reviews
From the ghettos of New York to the glittering hills of San Francisco, this is the tempestuous novel of a family you'll never forget.

DAVID - who destroyed his past to live a life of power and glory.

KATIE - who lived with her past, whose memories and roots were too deep for forgetfulness.

MARK - their son, who had the courage to struggle towards the sacred heritage his fathe
...more
Paperback, 640 pages
Published August 21st 1981 by Corgi (first published August 1975)
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P.e. lolo
Nov 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This story was about a woman who leaves Poland with her mother and moves to England to live with her uncle. After 12 yrs. Her mother passes away and she knows she needs to move to the U.S. with a family friend. The uncles’ wife does not like her or the uncle. Once she moves to America, everything is different for her. She has gone from being highly educated, living in a mansion or bigger than one. Going to concerts, balls and many other things. To now living in a Jewish ghetto in New York. She f ...more
Shira Reiss
Dec 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This was a very well written book about David, a self-hating Jewish man in the 1930’s who hates his heritage. He decides to change his name, deny who he is and cut himself off from his family. Psychologically, he sincerely believes that his background would prevent him from becoming wealthy and successful. He grows to detest anyone who reminds him of this heritage and in the process become an anti-Semite. To me, it is not just the story of one man, but the story of many Jews who arrived to the “ ...more
Mandy
Dec 15, 2013 rated it liked it
Cynthia Freeman’s first novel is the story of David Rezinetsky, a man who rejects his Jewish heritage and spends his life hiding his origins and running away from his past in order to build a successful life for himself, something he feels the pervading anti-Semitism of the time will prevent him from doing. Desperate to escape the poverty and the daily grind of New York ghetto life, he persuades his wife Katie Kovitz to go along with him and together they move first to Chicago and then to Califo ...more
Donna
Nov 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
I first read this book about 30 years ago when I still lived in California. I liked this book then and I really enjoyed reading this historical fiction again. It is interesting for me to read because I know a lot of the places that are mentioned in the book. I like the way the author writes because it keeps me interested. I think this book must be out of print because I had to order a used copy which was only $2!
Cecile
Jan 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First time reading this author but will certainly read more of her books. Truly enjoyed this novel.
Gayle
Mar 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
Read this in the late 80's.
Linda
May 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
A young NY Jew denounces his heritage.
Pat
Aug 26, 2012 rated it liked it


Second read. First in 1980's. Just as good now. Freeman writes great historical fiction.
Debbie
Oct 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
I adored this book, the writing, the imagery, the historical time, the characters and the beautiful story of Katie and David. David was a Jew who grew up on the very poor street of Hester Street in New York city, he hated everything his father stood for. He couldn't stand being a Jew in fact he despised it. Katie was a young innocent little girl who never knew a permanent home till her mother's best friend took her in and raised her after her mother passed away. Katie fell for David. David fell ...more
Diane Wachter
A World Full of Strangers, Cynthia Freeman, PB-B, @ 81, 1984. A man hungry for power, a wife who embraces the past, a son who wants to remember his father's heritage, and a mistress who is wanted because she is nothing like his wife. Okay.
bonnie foxwell
Oct 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A World Full Of Strangers

I loved this book. The characters came to life right off the page. The storyline held my interest throughout the entire book and I found it terribly hard to out down. I have read two of her books and I will continue to read her.
Stephanie
Dec 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A very well-written book. Eager to read others by Freeman.
Rona Kessel
Nov 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Could not put it down!

Excellent! Was mesmerized from the start . The characters really came to life. i would highly recommend this book to all.
Pat
Dec 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Excellent book. Loved the connections with San Francisco and the Peninsula. The male character, David is a real schmuck but just read how clever the author gets him.
Gayle Cappelluti
Jun 01, 2017 rated it liked it
A World Full of Strangers took a very long time, too long of a time, to basically say, what goes around comes around. In this story, David does his friend, Solly, a favor and agrees to date Katie, an immigrant like so many others on Hester Street, in the Lower East Side of New York City before World War II. What David discovers upon meeting this girl, though, is that she is actually not at all like anyone else, like no one he has ever met before. He falls for her, hard, almost immediately, and f ...more
Barbara Mason
Dec 25, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The story just dragged on and on, while I was waiting for Katie or Mark to stand up against David. The characters were not likeable. Katie was too complacent, and David was downright despicable. Mark was an innocent caught in between. I stayed with the book hoping it would go somewhere, but really, the story was just (slowly) moving on until Mark could grow up and finally learn the truth. I didn’t enjoy this read, and I’m not recommending it.
Penny
May 23, 2018 rated it it was ok
I liked the idea/theme of the story, but it was too repetitive, and constant introspection from the characters. Didn't care for any of the characters except for the son, Mark but it took forever to get to his story.
Lorri
Jun 04, 2017 rated it liked it
In my opinion, the novel would have been better served, more concise and illuminating, if it had 200 fewer pages.
Sandy Holmes
Jul 23, 2017 rated it liked it
This was a good family saga but was a bit too long and it dragged on quite slowly part of the time. (I do believe I had read it many years ago.)
Paige
Jan 09, 2017 rated it it was ok
I have got to stop getting emails from Bookbub! They have great deals on ebooks ($.99!), a review that makes the book seem amazing, then.... I don't really love it. I need to stick with books that come recommended from someone I trust!
So, this wasn't the worst book in the world, but it was not what I expected, either. The email summary talked about a Jewish orphan coming from England to live in New York City, and her life here. Which is all true. However, it quickly turns into a book about her
...more
Debbie Ewing
Somewhat engaging

The story line was believable. I did notice grammatical errors along the way, and the ending was a little flat. I cared enough about the characters to finish the book.
Judie
Nov 26, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Stopped halfway through. Not interested.
Carol Gabel
Dec 04, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Do not bother!

This book was poorly written. It was repetitive and predictable Don't bother. I was looking for a light read, this floated away..
Sue Kozlowski
Sep 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
Historical fiction. My first introduction to the immigrant life in New York. Descriptions of their plights still stay with me.
Kathy Creason
rated it liked it
Jul 11, 2010
Donna Talbert
rated it it was amazing
Apr 29, 2017
Andrea Dankovich
rated it really liked it
Jan 02, 2017
Jami Collier
rated it really liked it
Oct 15, 2012
Audrey Ball
rated it it was amazing
Nov 23, 2016
Horsefeathersranch
rated it it was amazing
May 08, 2009
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Beatrice Cynthia Freeman  (January 10, 1915 - October 22, 1988), pseudonym of Bea Feinberg, was an  American  novelist. She was born in  New York City, where, as a young girl, she began writing books but abandoned writing to pursue a career running an  interior decoration business. When poor health forced her to give up her business, she decided to dust off an old manuscript from childhood but dis ...more