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Rabbi's daughter Ellenson's wide-ranging and thought-provoking collection touches on familiar-mothers, marriage and bacon-as well as less obvious, but equally potent, sources of guilt. In one of the strongest essays, Susan Shapiro explains how she's done what most women only fantasize about: declined social engagements and cut back on granting favors so she can do what she wants. It's selfish, she admits, but she's happier. Binnie Kirshenbaum manages to retain a sense of humor despite being greeted with "When are you going to grow up and have a family?" whenever talk turns to her childlessness. Humor is a staple for many of Ellenson's writers, among them Lori Gottlieb, whose "loving but lethal" mother seems to have been pulled from central casting. But Gottlieb captures the right tone, and the result is fresh and funny. As is Sharon Brous' recollection of being reprimanded by a religious Jew for placing an unopened bottle of salad dressing on a kitchen counter. "I was mortified and guilt-ridden-as much by my stupid mistake as by the fact that I didn't understand half the words she was shouting at me." Her solution: she is now a rabbi. That won't work for everyone, but given the variety of approaches offered here, most readers will find something to help assuage their guilty consciences.
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Lively and intelligent. -- Seattle Times
Strong and moving stories about what it means... to be a Jewish woman in todays world. -- Los Angeles Times
Youll feel guilty if you dont read this hilarious and poignant collection. Move over, Woody Allen. -- St. Petersburg Times
Strong and moving stories about what it means... to be a Jewish woman in todays world. (Los Angeles Times) Youll feel guilty if you dont read this hilarious and poignant collection. Move over, Woody Allen. (St. Petersburg Times) Lively and intelligent. (Seattle Times)
I only took away one star because the description made it sound like a collection of funny essays. But about half of them are serious or thoughtful. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Karen
Thought-provoking, relatable, enlightening. I've enjoyed reading the essays. They might be good to use in a study group. Not the whole book, but choose one or some to discuss. Read morePublished 19 months ago by Gretchen Lieberman
As a Jew, I found this borderline offensive. Sorry. Wanted to like it, but thought it was trite and predictable and whiny.Published 21 months ago by MerchantMan
my book. I am not Jewish, nor know much about Judaism, and I loved reading this book! The stories in this book are very heart felt and yet they contain great sense of humor. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Paprika
amazing, feel good, identifiable, laughable, guilty pleasure- perfect for all Jewish girls out there who have kooky grandmothers, overbearing mothers, problems dating jewish men,... Read morePublished on January 21, 2008 by E. Searle
Ruth Ellenson, the editor of this collection clearly worked overtime to gather a diverse group of women contributors to her "Modern Jewish Girl's Guide to Guilt. Read morePublished on June 26, 2007 by J. A Magill
As a 30-something editor in the world of Jewish publishing, I have seen a LOT of Jewish books out there aimed at young women. Read morePublished on January 16, 2007 by Mich69
I liked the wide range of points of view- smart, considered, often very funny. It's a thoughtfully collected book- very engaging.Published on November 6, 2006 by R. Deitsch
The Modern Jewish Girl's Guide to Guilt is one of the best books I have read this year. Some of the essays had me crying with laughter and some had me crying because of the way... Read morePublished on October 5, 2006 by J. S. Rosenthal