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Not Our Kind

3.73  ·  Rating details ·  3,493 ratings  ·  450 reviews
With echoes of The Rules of Civility and The Boston Girl, a compelling and thought-provoking novel set in postwar New York City, about two women—one Jewish, one a WASP—and the wholly unexpected consequences of their meeting

One rainy morning in June, two years after the end of World War II, a minor traffic accident brings together Eleanor Moskowitz and Patricia Bellamy. The
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published September 4th 2018 by Harper
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Average rating 3.73  · 
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Mar 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An honest portrayal of life in Brooklyn immediately following WWII. A MUST READ for historical fiction fans.

Eleanor Moskowitz never would have imagined that while on her way to a job interview, her world was about to completely change course. A traffic accident forced Patricia Bellamy and Eleanor to be introduced. After that, a domino effect took place.

This novel takes place two years after WWII in Brooklyn New York. There is still much prejudice against Jewish people. This book is unique in th
Angela M
Sep 12, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars.

The setting is New York City two years after WWII has ended and two women who couldn’t be more unlike cross paths in a chance meeting when their taxis are involved in an accident. Eleanor Moskowitz, a young disillusioned woman has just resigned from her first teaching job at an exclusive private school when money and status win out over the honesty she stands up for. She’s from a Jewish working class family and Patricia Bellamy who seems to have it all - affluence, a beautiful apartme
Suzanne Leopold (Suzy Approved Book Reviews)
Eleanor Moskowitz is stuck in a taxi in New York City during a visit from President Truman. She is without employment and is running late for a job interview for a teaching position. Her cab is hit by another vehicle leaving her with minor injuries. The other taxi’s passenger, Patricia Bellamy, feels responsible and takes her to her apartment for treatment.

Eleanor is introduced to Patricia’s thirteen-year-old daughter, Margeaux, who is crippled from polio. Because of her condition, Margeaux has
Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
4 sophisticated stars to Not Our Kind! ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

It seems like I was just writing a review for another World War II story, and in fact I was. Not Our Kind stands out because of its unique perspective on being Jewish in a post-WWII United States.

To set the stage, two women are brought together by a chance encounter in Brooklyn two years after the war. Eleanor Moskovitz is Jewish and a teacher. She meets Patricia Bellamy whose challenging teen daughter, Margaux, needs a tutor due to being diagn
Feb 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Christine by: Crumb review
3.5 rounded to 4 stars

Not Our Kind is about a young Jewish woman who takes a job as a tutor for a 13-year-old girl who does not want to return to school out of shame after she is left with a withered leg after a battle with polio. The girl, Margaux, is the only child of privileged couple Patricia and Wynn. The story takes place just after the end of WWII in New York City where anti-Semitism remains prevalent. Patricia is willing to overlook the fact that her new hire is Jewish, but has Eleanor u
Kitty Zeldis has spun a beautiful tale of friendship, acceptance, and love. The story begins with the chance meeting of Eleanor and Patricia when their taxi cabs collide. New York City, two years after the end of WWII. Eleanor is a young Jewish woman, the daughter of a hat maker, and has just quit her teaching job. Patricia is a wealthy socialite and the mother of a 13-year-old daughter Margaux. When Patricia invites Eleanor home with her to get out of the rain she instantly sees that there is ...more
Mar 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is an interesting story about a 20 something Jewish woman, Eleanor Moskowitz, who becomes a tutor to a young girl, Margaux, from an upper class family, who is recovering from polio. The mother, Patricia Bellamy, asks her to go by the name of “Moss” since they live in a restricted building. The father, Wynn, is not pleased that they have a Jewish tutor, but is willing to tolerate it for his daughter’s sake. Eleanor hopes that this is her entry into a world she could only dream of.

But all is
Aug 25, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: from-publisher
This was a 2.5 star read for me. I was sooooo excited about the premise—Jewish woman facing discrimination and anti-Semitism in post-WW2 America—but sadly, the writing and storyline fell flat.

Characters had every opportunity for depth and complexity, but instead, I found them to be drawn with broad strokes. Emotions ran hot and cold—there was absolutely no in-between. One minute, a character was sorrowful and withdrawn; the next, chipper and flamboyant. Decisions were made with about as much tho
Susan Peterson
Sep 12, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not Our Kind is a riveting story featuring two women: a young Jewish girl and the rich woman who hires her to tutor her young daughter. The book takes place in New York City in 1947 and the author does an excellent job of putting the reader in that time and place. The characters in this book are complex and interesting, as they deal with friendships and relationships that are tainted with bigotry and misogyny. This is a very thought-provoking novel which kept my interest from the first page thro ...more
Definitely an interesting perspective of US history - antisemitism after WWII - not a time period that I remember having read before. The author really does an amazing job with setting that time and place and really grounded the reader into that age through the NYC location, the summering up north, the clothes, and the hats - can't forget to mention the hats! The story itself didn't really blow me away, but it was great vehicle to impart this time of US history through a historical fiction read. ...more
Jul 22, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This didn’t quite work for me. The writing and story line turned the pages quickly enough but the emotional narrative I found somewhat contrived and rather toe curling; it veered too often towards a teenage romance. And I wasn’t convinced by the Jewish ‘otherness’, it seemed rather to be a class ‘otherness’ - a pity, as there was a story there to be had.
Jan Rice
This is a book with flaws, and yet I found it compelling reading

In 1947 New York, Eleanor, a talented young teacher who's Jewish, finds herself working for a family of blue bloods to tutor their teenage daughter, Margaux, who has an atrophied leg and a bitter attitude as the result of polio. Eleanor much admires Margaux's mother Patricia who recognizes her beneficial impact on the daughter and has championed her hiring. Patricia is polished and elegant and seems to Eleanor to be a paragon of cul
Thanks to Suzy's Approved Books (FB), the author, and Harper for this ARC.

A fast moving book that I devoured in 3 days. I absolutely loved this book. The characters, the plot, and everything.

I'm a big fan of Jewish fiction and this one didn't disappoint. I always find it interesting that in the 1940's how anti-semetic people were and how they "Weren't Our Kind" and found means to change or shorten their name so they wouldn't be known as Jews. Thank G-d I grew up in the 1970s where I didn't fac
Camille Maio
Sep 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was quickly captivated by this story of two women from different words, though only blocks away. I found the characters to be realistic and engaging and the story of one that is at the same time simple and deep. Though I am usually a plot-driven reader, I found myself wholly engaged with Eleanor, Patricia, Tom, Wynn, and Margeaux. I would love to see a sequel!
3.5 stars because I rather liked the ending and the period details are amazing

Not Our Kind was a library pick-up whim, the pretty cover catching my eye as I was getting ready to leave. The blurb was convincing enough that I brought it home with me. For the most part, I really did enjoy this nicely written snippet of historical fiction that offers us what feels like quite a realistic portrayal of Life in 1947 New York.

I was sucked right in from the first few pages, and although the middle was a
Vivian Payton
May 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Kitty Zeldis creates an intriguing story about Eleanor Moskowitz, an educated young Jewish woman who’s a teacher and lives on Second Avenue in New York City, and Patricia Bellamy, a high society WASP who lives on Park Avenue. These two women’s lives and worlds couldn’t be further apart, and she takes you on their journey and what it was like living in New York City postwar 1947 describing how social and economic divisions were in that time period.

Patricia hires Eleanor to tutor her thirteen-yea
Hanna Gichard
I read an advanced reader copy.

For historical fiction, it was a little fluffy. Overall it was nice but a little flat. I liked the two central characters and was always interested to find out what happened next with them. But so much of the plot and story arc felt glossed over in the last half. The characters began to feel vague and unfamiliar and the story telling has an odd detached quality to it, as if the author suddenly doesn't know what to do with the characters anymore and just wants to b
Claudia Silk
May 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great historical fiction about a time period that isn't usually covered - the late 1940's. I loved the fact that this story stayed in the time period and didn't flip back and forth with present day. The story revolves around 2 women one a WASP and one a Jewish woman and the way their lives literally collide. I loved the settings both in the city and in the country (Connecticut). Well done and Kitty Zeldis will be appearing at our library in September!! ...more
Laurie • The Baking Bookworm
WWII Historical Fiction is a favourite genre of mine and Not Our Kind caught my attention because it deals with the struggles and racism, surreptitious and overt, that Jewish people in New York City continued to experience years after the Second World War. The story follows Eleanor Moskowitz, a young Jewish teacher who takes a job as a private tutor for Margaux Bellamy, a teen with a Park Avenue address and rich, powerful WASP parents to match.

The first half of the book whizzed by for me as Zeld
I didn't love this book. I did not think the characters were fleshed out well, nor did I get too involved in anyone's particular plight. I did feel that the heroine being Jewish really was almost irrelevant to the plot. So there was a little anti-semitism there, it didn't really fuel much to me. This could just as easily been about class differences, and "out of crowd" differences, as it was about fear of the unknown. It kind of meant nothing to the story in my opinion. I could have skipped this ...more
Linda Zagon
Jul 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My Review of “Not Our Kind” by Kitty Zeldis Harper Collins Publishers September 4, 2018

Kitty Zeldis, Author of “Not Our Kind” had me captivated and mesmerized by her vivid and thought-provoking images and descriptions of the characters and landscape. The Genres for this Novel are Fiction, Women’s Fiction and Historical Fiction. The time period of this novel is set two years after World War Two, in both New York City and Conneticut.

The author describes her colorful cast of characters as complex a
Sep 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely loved every word of this book, until the last paragraph! There is nothing that irritates me more, in fiction, than being left wondering what happens to the main characters I have grown to love. Will she or won't she? What happens now? Those are questions I am left asking, and have no idea which way the author wanted her main characters, especially Eleanor Moskowitz and Patricia Bellamy, to go. The story takes place during the years after WWII, when women were beginning to come into ...more
Jun 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Toni, Lynne
Shelves: general-fiction
In terms of things I like to read about this book covered so many bases: Judaism, teachers, the 1940's a New York City setting, disease, five checks!
Not Our Kind tells the tale of two women from vastly different circumstances. Eleanor Mokowitz, the daughter of a widowed milliner and Patricia Bellamy, the wealthy privileged mother of a teenage daughter. Like two dogs sniffing each other out, circling, both curious and apprehensive. Together they share a common interest, Margaux, Patricia's daugh
MaryBeth's Bookshelf
Set in NYC in the late 1940's this book is about two women who forge an unlikely friendship. Despite their differing backgrounds they are able to find common ground. ...more
Maureen DeLuca
Jan 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
This novel takes place two years after WWII in Brooklyn New York and what it is like being Jewish - Most of the historical novels I read are during the war, not after. This was another way of telling their story after the war was over. A great read for sure !!
Literary Redhead
I was honored when Kitty Zeldis — a most stylish woman who never leaves the house without red lipstick — invited me to review NOT OUR KIND. I’m so glad I agreed, because her newest novel is as elegant and contemporary as she.

One moment can change a life ... or two ... as is the case in this richly imagined and beautifully written novel set in late 1940s New York City. A traffic accident on a rainy day brings together two women whose lives may never have crossed: Eleanor Moskowitz, new teaching g
Not Our Kind is a captivating story of discrimination and anti-Semitism soon after WW2. Eleanor, a young Jewish teacher and Patricia, a rich WASP, are thrown together after an accident. Patricia hires Eleanor as a tutor for her young daughter. The story is told from the viewpoints of Elanor and Patricia and it gave me a lot of insight to each character. I enjoyed reading this book! Kitty Zeldis beautifully described the clothing and scenery. Historical fiction is my favorite genre and I loved No ...more
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Not Our Kind takes place in post-WWII New York. I really like the historical setting, because it's rare to get fiction with Jewish main characters that isn't set in World War II. Well, it was anyway, but that's beginning to change.

Eleanor Moskowitz ends up leaving her teaching job because she's not willing to ignore the fact that a student cheated, but the school's not willing to punish her because her family has money. She signs up with an agency to try to find a job but ends up getting one th
Nov 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Kitty Zeldis has given us a well written and engaging novel about two women from two different worlds who are bound by their mutual love of one young girl. One rainy morning in 1947 in New York City, Eleanor Moskowitz is running late for a job interview, while Patricia Bellamy is on her way to Bergdorf Goodman to pick up something for her daughter Margaux. Their paths literally collide when Patricia’s taxi runs into the taxi Eleanor is in. As Eleanor stands in the rain, softly crying because she ...more
Thanks to the publisher for sending me a free copy of the book as part of my participation in a blog tour.

This turned out to be exactly the book I needed to read. I’ll admit I was a bit nervous going into it because, despite being a post-WWII setting, it’s still referenced the war and I’m a bit burned out on the genre. I was so pleasantly surprised by this book, though! It reminded me of my reaction to reading Michelle Gable’s The Summer I Met Jack. This book took me to a time and place that wa
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