Son of a Smaller Hero

  • Title: Son of a Smaller Hero
  • Author: Mordecai Richler Ray Smith
  • ISBN: 9780771099700
  • Page: 165
  • Format: Paperback
  • Son of a Smaller Hero Young Noah Adler passionate ruthlessly idealistic is the prodigal son of Montreal s Jewish ghetto Finding tradition in league with self delusion he attempts to shatter the ghetto s illusory walls
    Young Noah Adler, passionate, ruthlessly idealistic, is the prodigal son of Montreal s Jewish ghetto Finding tradition in league with self delusion, he attempts to shatter the ghetto s illusory walls by entering the foreign territory of the goyim But here, freedom and self determination continue to elude him Eventually, Noah comes to recognize justice and safety and aYoung Noah Adler, passionate, ruthlessly idealistic, is the prodigal son of Montreal s Jewish ghetto Finding tradition in league with self delusion, he attempts to shatter the ghetto s illusory walls by entering the foreign territory of the goyim But here, freedom and self determination continue to elude him Eventually, Noah comes to recognize justice and safety and a kind of felicity in a world he cannot entirely leave behind Richler s superb account of Noah s struggle to scale the walls of the ghetto overflows with rich comic satire Son of a Smaller Hero is a compassionate, penetrating account of the nature of belonging, told with the savage realism for which Mordecai Richler s fiction is celebrated.

    • Son of a Smaller Hero - Mordecai Richler Ray Smith
      165 Mordecai Richler Ray Smith
    • thumbnail Title: Son of a Smaller Hero - Mordecai Richler Ray Smith
      Posted by:Mordecai Richler Ray Smith
      Published :2019-09-03T07:54:55+00:00

    About Mordecai Richler Ray Smith


    1. Mordecai Richler was a Canadian author, screenwriter and essayist His best known works are The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz 1959 and Barney s Version 1997 his 1989 novel Solomon Gursky Was Here was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 1990 He was also well known for the Jacob Two Two children s storiesThe son of a Jewish scrap yard dealer, Richler was born in 1931 and raised on St Urbain Street in the Mile End area of Montreal He learned Yiddish and English, and graduated from Baron Byng High School Richler enrolled in Sir George Williams College now Concordia University to study English but dropped out before completing his degree Years later, Leah Rosenberg, Richler s mother, published an autobiography, The Errand Runner Memoirs of a Rabbi s Daughter 1981 , which discusses Mordecai s birth and upbringing, and the sometime difficult relationship between them.Richler moved to Paris at age nineteen, intent on following in the footsteps of a previous generation of literary exiles, the so called Lost Generation of the 1920s, many of whom were from the United States.Richler returned to Montreal in 1952, working briefly at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, then moved to London in 1954 He published seven of his ten novels while living in London, as well as considerable journalism.Worrying about being so long away from the roots of my discontent , Richler returned to Montreal in 1972 He wrote repeatedly about the Jewish community of Montreal and especially about his former neighborhood, portraying it in multiple novels.In England, in 1954, Richler married Catherine Boudreau, a French Canadian divorcee nine years his senior On the eve of their wedding, he met and was smitten by Florence Mann n e Wood , a young married woman.Some years later Richler and Mann both divorced and married each other He adopted her son Daniel The couple had five children together Daniel, Jacob, Noah, Martha and Emma These events inspired his novel Barney s Version.Richler died of cancer at the age of 70.


    922 Comments


    1. This was Richler's second novel and one of several pieces of fiction he wrote about the Jewish community around St Urbain Street in Montreal. It is a story of three generations in a Jewish family and the coming of age story of Noah Adler, the idealistic son of Wolf and Leah and grandson of Melech a stern orthodox Jew who controlled his family with an iron fist. Noah was once the favoured grandson of Melech, but after Noah catches Melech defrauding a peddler and brings it to his attention, a slap [...]

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    2. It's worth a read just for the evocative descriptions of the Jewish Ghetto of Montreal in the 1950s, but even more laudable is the struggle of Noah Adler, the main character, with himself, his family, and society at the time, which is as relevant to readers today as it would have been when the novel was first published in 1955. This was my first Richler novel (other than Jacob Two-Two of course!) and it has inspired me to seek out others of Richler's works - hopefully they are just as readable, [...]

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    3. It's almost a given Richler will score a five-on-five.If you are from or living in Montreal, his novels are a must read. Most of his stories take place in and around the city. There might be many reasons to read Richler's works but for me the tone and feel of the narrative and characters is the main draw. Though this, his second novel, is a more sombre and serious read as compared to his later novels, it left me wanting more when I reached that inevitable and final ‘full stop’.

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    4. The tale of a young Jewish man, black sheep of his family, trying to break away from that family.Mordecai Richler is one of my favorite authors, and in this early work of his you can see the "Montreal Curmudgeon" protagonist in it's earliest stage. From here you can meet a young Barney, an alternative Duddy Kravitz, a grandson to Solomon Gursky.Breaking away from an insular culture, especially one seen as a religion and ethnicity rolled into one, can be heartbreaking and takes a lot of character [...]

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    5. Never mind books like "Barney's Version"THIS is pure, unadulterated, perfectly distilled Mordecai Richler. One of the most tragic, blunt, and SEARING novels I've read in some time -- there are few books that can match this one in its exploration of ghettoization. Physical, mental, and social. It forces its characters to face hard realitiesd most of them don't come away from the experience unscathed. The prose ramming these ideas home is some of the most beautiful I have ever read in a Canadian n [...]

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    6. More cohesive than The Acrobats, but the characters are somewhat vague and insubstantial. I'd say particularly the women, but really, I think the men are pretty fragmentary too. They all seem more like pawns the author is moving around than real people to me. None of them were very likeable (except Panofsky and maybe Theo). I did like the descriptions of Montreal and the seasons.

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    7. It's very good, in fact, but it reminded quite a bit of The Sacrifice by Adele Wiseman – there is one particular plot element the books share, beyond basic contexts. Richler is in great form and the story comes together masterfully, the resonance is there quite beautiful, quite unsettling, quite real. Definitely worth a look if you've ever enjoyed Richler's other work.

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    8. This novel marks the point at which Richler found his "voice" and the subject matter and settings that would lead to his later classic novels. Essential to a full understanding and appreciation of Richler's work.

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    9. A sad story about a young man and the family he is trying to escape from.

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    10. Read for Montreal bookclub, January 2011. A quick read; it was interesting to read one of Richler's early novels. Also fun to read another book that takes place in Montreal, my new home.

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    11. Endearing, believable characters. Writing with humour, insight, sarcasm, and kindness.

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    12. Enjoyed this one.It is tight and he captures the mood of the place, time and community so well.This young man.This young womanth trapped is such different ways.

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