HomeGroupsTalkExploreZeitgeist
Search Site
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Loading...

Dough: A Memoir

by Mort Zachter

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1008226,803 (3.29)12
Mort Zachter's childhood revolved around a small shop on Manhattan's Lower East Side known in the neighborhood as "the day-old bread store." It was a bakery where nothing was baked, owned by his two eccentric uncles who referred to their goods as "the merchandise." Zachter grew up sleeping in the dinette of a leaking Brooklyn tenement. He lived a classic immigrant story--one of a close-knit, working-class family struggling to make it in America. Only they were rich. In Dough, Zachter chronicles the life-altering discovery made at age thirty-six that he was heir to several million dollars his bachelor uncles had secretly amassed in stocks and bonds. Although initially elated, Zachter battled bitter memories of the long hours his mother worked at the bakery for no pay. And how could his own parents have kept the secret from him while he was a young married man, working his way through night school? As he cleans out his uncles' apartment, Zachter discovers clues about their personal lives that raise more questions than they answer. He also finds cake boxes packed with rolls of two-dollar bills and mattresses stuffed with coins. In prose that is often funny and at times elegiac, Zachter struggles with the legacy of his enigmatic family and the implications of his new-found wealth. Breaking with his family's workaholic heritage, Zachter abandons his pragmatic accounting career to pursue his lifelong dream of being a writer. And though he may not understand his family, in the end he realizes that forgiveness and acceptance matter most.… (more)
None
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 12 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Mort thought his family was poor, and lo, they turned out to be rich! Why would a family live this way? And what will happen next? I enjoyed finding out. ( )
  iBeth | Mar 27, 2009 |
I loved this little book. It was a sweet story about a family that loved each other simply because (and despite of!) who they were.
Growing up Mort Zachter's life was a struggle and he was under the impression the whole family was struggling . . . well they were, but, simply by choice. There were millions of dollars surrounding the family, they were just never used. When Mort found out about the money there was a strong sense of disbelief and some resentment, but the funny (and oftentimes crazy) memories of his family can't be changed, so Mort looks ahead to the future and what he can give his children, rather than harping on the past.
The best gifts, it seems, are the ones you don't expect and can't always understand. ( )
  nanmb | Aug 13, 2008 |
Like a giant wave that heaves, towers, then crashes, the structure of notable stories often build to a revelatory moment that crashes onto the heads of its characters and shatters their world. When Mort Zachter learns that his two hard-working uncles, who lived a life of near-poverty, were millionaires at their deaths, the revelation leaves him as stunned as Luke when he learns that Darth Vader is his father. Zachter’s memoir, Dough, opens just as this revelatory wave crashes. The memoir then unfolds in snapshots of contrast that illustrate the world Zachter knew before versus after the revelation. Because of this structure, the reader never experiences the full impact of Zachter’s shock. But after seeing, among other things, how Zachter’s mother works in her brothers’ bakery every Saturday of her adult life without pay, how his father knew of his uncles’ secret millions, and how Zachter borrows money for the adoption of his children while his uncles offer no financial assistance, we grow to appreciate Zachter’s shock. Dough’s chapters shift back and forth through time so that in one chapter it’s the 1980’s and we are in the uncles’ bakery during a robbery, then in the next chapter it’s 1995 and we are with Zachter as he cleans out his uncles’ apartment after their deaths, and then in the next chapter we are back to the 1980’s and meeting Zachter’s future wife. Ultimately, Dough reads like a loaf roughly formed, but at its center, it is a delicious tale of a family -- its quirks, its secrets and its delights. ( )
  kvanuska | Jul 19, 2008 |
In this brief memoir Mort Zachtar describes what its like to learn your family has millions, after living a life of poverty for 36 years. He works hard to erase the anger he felt at their betrayal and to put the money to good use in moving forward with his life. Unfortunately, by removing his anger from the work I felt he left the book emotionless. His tone came across more as flat and neutral and it was hard for me to care about what he was going through. It seemed like he was more worried about what other people would think of him and his story then he was about getting out the true heart of what happened and how he felt about it. I would give another book by him a try and I think its great that the money has given him this opportunity to write, but I wish he had dug a little deeper on Dough. ( )
  frisbeesage | Jul 15, 2008 |
Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
First words
Quotations
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS
Canonical LCC

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (1)

Mort Zachter's childhood revolved around a small shop on Manhattan's Lower East Side known in the neighborhood as "the day-old bread store." It was a bakery where nothing was baked, owned by his two eccentric uncles who referred to their goods as "the merchandise." Zachter grew up sleeping in the dinette of a leaking Brooklyn tenement. He lived a classic immigrant story--one of a close-knit, working-class family struggling to make it in America. Only they were rich. In Dough, Zachter chronicles the life-altering discovery made at age thirty-six that he was heir to several million dollars his bachelor uncles had secretly amassed in stocks and bonds. Although initially elated, Zachter battled bitter memories of the long hours his mother worked at the bakery for no pay. And how could his own parents have kept the secret from him while he was a young married man, working his way through night school? As he cleans out his uncles' apartment, Zachter discovers clues about their personal lives that raise more questions than they answer. He also finds cake boxes packed with rolls of two-dollar bills and mattresses stuffed with coins. In prose that is often funny and at times elegiac, Zachter struggles with the legacy of his enigmatic family and the implications of his new-found wealth. Breaking with his family's workaholic heritage, Zachter abandons his pragmatic accounting career to pursue his lifelong dream of being a writer. And though he may not understand his family, in the end he realizes that forgiveness and acceptance matter most.

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Haiku summary

LibraryThing Author

Mort Zachter is a LibraryThing Author, an author who lists their personal library on LibraryThing.

profile page | author page

Popular covers

Quick Links

Rating

Average: (3.29)
0.5
1 1
1.5
2 4
2.5 1
3 10
3.5 5
4 12
4.5
5 1

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 170,118,955 books! | Top bar: Always visible