Books

Posted at Nov 2, 2008 10:53 am

So I skipped ulpan today to read, mostly. And to go to the bank. It appears I will have to return tomorrow to iron out a deposit problem which is a month old.  I think maybe the holidays are only one day long here (instead of two) because you need the extra time to fix broken stuff. Like banks. And cell-phone contracts which really aren’t contracts. And work permits which take weeks to process. (It looks like I won’t be starting my histaklut for another month.) I’ll leave it at that.
Reviewing books is way more fun than griping.  Spoilers ahead.
So I read Naomi Ragen’s The Sacrifice of Tamar yesterday and I think that that is the last time I will read her books. I had found The Saturday Wife amusing, though a trifle dogmatic.   But The Sacrifice was basically well-written propaganda.  The message? True happiness is found when you reject the emptiness of the secular world as well as charedus and it’s rigid, ignorant, hypocritical lifestyle, and move out to a a settlement in the Shomron with normal people who wear skirts and sandals without socks.  That was what the nauseatingly "good" character ended up doing. Her simple charedi friend joined her by the end of the book and finally found peace, too. The chasidic girl who had gone off the derech was past all saving, though. Ah well. The end.  I can’t handle fictional propaganda, even if it is well written. and even if I think socks (among many other things) are a travesty. So.
Next I read Tracy Chevalier’s Falling Angels.  I had already enjoyed Girl with a Pearl Earring, as well as Burning Bright, and The Virgin Blue. I was mostly impressed with the vivid historical detail though I admit that the endings of the latter two had left me a little cold. But Falling Angels (set in England at the turn of the century) was brilliant. I especially loved the following scene which I must share:  Jenny, the servant is narrating.
"Tell me, Jenny," Miss Black said, "what do you think of women’s suffrage?"
"Well, we all suffer, don’t we?" I said carefully, not sure what there was to say.
Miss Black and the missus laughed, though I’d not made a joke.
"No, I mean votes for women," Miss Black explained.
"But women don’t vote," I said.
"Women aren’t allowed to vote, but they should have every right to, the same as men. That is what we are fighting for you see. Don’t you feel you have as much right as your father, your brother, your husband, to elect who is to govern this country?"
"Haven’t got none of them." She hadn’t mentioned sons.
"Jenny, we are fighting for your equality," the missus said.
"That’s very kind of you, ma’am. Now will you will you be wanting coffee or tea?"
"Oh, coffee, I think, don’t you, Caroline?"
 *******************************************************************************************************************************************

Nothing i could write could top that so I’ll just close with a *grin*

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