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“I like Michael Chabons' writing a lot, so I was quite surprised that I had difficulties "getting into it". I considered giving up on it, but slowly the plot, the place and the characters grew on me, and by page 150 I was hooked.
“Charon is masterful at metaphor and simile. I want my high school children to read this book just to explore that aspect of the writing and perhaps learn something they can apply in their own writing. Charon has many skills as a writer, actually, and I'm glad I read this book after many years away from his collection of work. I appreciate a good storyteller and Chabon is one of my favorites. The Yiddish Policemen's Union tells something of an alternate history about Jews, Israel, Alaska and more with some rough characters -- on and off the police force -- some nasty realities, and lots of great humor.”K O wrote this review 12 days ago. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This was a fascinating book. I am a detective story fan and Detective Landsman fit the bill perfectly. The author rewrites history in order to establish a temporary Jewish refugee district in Alaska following the collapse of Israel after WWll which has lasted 60 years and is about to be dissolved. I found everything compelling, sad, funny with passages written like no one but Chabon can write. Of the three books of his that I have read, this is my favorite.”Alice B. wrote this review Sunday, October 6, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“A very good read but slightly confusing due to most names and many phrases being in Jewish. The storyline was good and held my interest.”Marsha C wrote this review Monday, September 2, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“My Jewish culture is a little weak but Chabon writes beautifully and made me laugh out loud.”Mary Ann M wrote this review Thursday, August 22, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“I liked Kavalier and Clay so much, I was really disappointed by this book. It was difficult to read - the plot was spotty and hinted at, never fully developed and the murder mystery was so pathetically "solved" in the last 5 pages it seemed like an afterthought. At times I enjoyed the characters and witty dialogue but other times I was so annoyed. Just meh.”beth wrote this review Tuesday, August 6, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Wow, what a book! It's a detective novel about the disparity between justice and the law... no, it's an inspirational story of personal redemption and life fulfillment... wait, it's actually a story of man's inherent affinity with the past and a misplaced people refusing to desert hope... but then again, it might be an epistemic lesson on the ambiguity of good and evil... or, is it bigger than that? In all honesty, I think it's smaller than that, and it's just a chance for us all to witness the "Michael Chabon Show". This guy is good. The alternate reality of a Jewish homeland in Alaska and the action-prone, rogue detective story is a win. However, the prose can drag on and on, and certain paragraphs come off as anomalies in style and genre that Chabon threw in because he was bored. The ridiculous number of things he tries to do in this single book is slight overkill. Still, ridiculous can be good and this was definitely worth the read. At times, Chabon's skill just makes me laugh. And then be jealous. And then read more. A good quick read. ”Johnski wrote this review Sunday, August 4, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Boring. Couldn't finish it.”JenZug wrote this review Saturday, August 3, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“I was really looking forward to reading this novel, since being introduced to Michael Chabon in his Pulitzer prize-winning Cavalier and Clay. I must confess, however, that I found this a bit of a tough read. It certainly was not because I find his writing difficult, in fact, I find it stimulating. I struggled throughout this novel with the Yiddish vocabulary.
Michael Chabon is a great storyteller. His ability to describe situations, establish an intricate plot, keep me interested and provide an interesting twist at the end of the story are most gratifying. I just love reading this author. However, I am not interested in trying to grab my computer every time I run across another Yiddish phrase. I know he thought I was going to be able to understand the various Yiddish terms that he used throughout this book, but I found it quite difficult to remember the reference to various terms like cell phone and gun and cigarette.
I still recommend this novel to anyone is interested in a good mystery. If you can put up with the various unfamiliar terms, you will find this a great read.
“This book was ok. I thought it was a bit confusing for the first half - then it got better. ”Juliet P wrote this review Monday, June 10, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No