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Other People's Lives
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Finalist for the National Book Award and winner of the Jewish Book Award: A collection of five stories and one novella from Johanna Kaplan exploring the private worlds of Jewish families in New York in the middle of the twentieth century In her first published literary work, Johanna Kaplan, acclaimed author of O My America!, examines the lives of other people with heart, humor, and a unique understanding of their problems, demons, and dreams. An achingly poignant collection of character-rich stories, Other People’s Lives centers on the children and grandchildren of immigrants, mostly Jewish, living in urban America. They are people struggling with the past, mental illness, loss, family legacies, and all variety of expectation in the mid-twentieth century; they are transplanted strangers entering, and often imposing upon, the personal lives of others. From the brilliant title novella, in which a troubled young woman enters the rarefied orbit of a famous couple, to the delightfully appealing tale of a skeptical city girl’s unhappy expulsion to a summer camp in the country, Kaplan’s stories explore the power of self-delusion and the all-too-frequently unspoken pain of memory.
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