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Brooklyn Was Mine by Valerie Steiker

Brooklyn Was Mine

by Valerie Steiker, Jennifer Egan (Contributor), Darin Strauss (Contributor)

Other authors: Chris Knutsen (Editor), Phillip Lopate (Introduction)

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Lacking the resources to move into a Brooklyn apartment and write about the experience, I decided to read a book of essays by people who have done so.Brooklyn Was Mine is full of quirky information about the most literary borough of NYC. For instance, the sewers there used to be state of the art, and at a certain intersection, the winds of Brooklyn form a vortex powerful enough to carry a whole stack of newspapers high into the sky.
More importantly, a sense of "this place isn't what it used to be" pervades the book. Parents alternately lament that the neighborhood isn't as homey as it used to be and express gratitude that crime has gone down. People who were abused as poor immigrants a few decades ago now express nervousness about the new waves of poor immigrants. But the city (excuse me, borough) retains a real multiculti feel, which is what makes it interesting...if Brooklyn really were what it used to be, it would be dead.
Phil Lopate introduces this collection, and his high standards make it well worth reading, even for people who don't dream of moving to Flatbush. Anyone who ever made or found a home will find something familiar here. In a culture where so few places are interchangeable and temporary, it's pleasurable to read about a community that retains a real sense of place.
1 vote subbobmail | Mar 27, 2008 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Valerie Steikerprimary authorall editionscalculated
Egan, JenniferContributormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Strauss, DarinContributormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Knutsen, ChrisEditorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lopate, PhillipIntroductionsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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