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This Is My God Paperback – April 15, 1992

4.7 out of 5 stars 66 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

8 1.5-hour cassettes --This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.

About the Author

Herman Wouk is the author of such classics as The Caine Mutiny" (1951), Marjorie Morningstar "(1955), Youngblood Hawke" (1961), Don t Stop the Carnival" (1965), The Winds of War" (1971), War and Remembrance" (1978), and Inside, Outside" (1985). His later works include The Hope" (1993), The Glory" (1994), and A Hole in Texas" (2004). Among Mr. Wouk s laurels are the 1952 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for The Caine Mutiny"; the cover of Time" magazine for Marjorie Morningstar", the bestselling novel of that year; and the cultural phenomenon of The Winds of War "and War and Remembrance", which he wrote over a thirteen-year period and which went on to become two of the most popular novels and TV miniseries events of the 1970s and 1980s. In 1998, he received the Guardian of Zion Award for support of Israel. In 2008, Mr. Wouk was honored with the first Library of Congress Fiction Award, to be known as the Herman Wouk Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Writing of Fiction. He lives in Palm Springs, California.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 345 pages
  • Publisher: Back Bay Books; Reprint edition (April 15, 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316955140
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316955140
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #115,391 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Herman Wouk earned his living as a scriptwriter for Fred Allen before serving in World War II. His career as a novelist spans nearly six decades and has brought him resounding international acclaim. He lives in Palm Springs, California.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
In 1959, Orthodox Judaism was a dinosaur. Its members didn't have to fight against being arrogant as they must do today. It took a great deal of Chutzpah for Herman Wouk to write this book where he discusses and then dismisses Reform and Conservative Judaism in a chapter. Without rancor or overt criticism he discusses these movements within Judaism but he doesn't accept them as Judaism.
That said, this is an excellent book on what Judaism means in regards to marriage, history, Israel, prayer, observance, Torah, Talmud, kashrut and study. He writes in a clear concise style concerning the daily life of an observant Jew as well as the history that went into it. Many times he argues for the education of young Jewish children in Judaism (taking issue with the refrain "they can choose it when they grow up" since it is easy to reject what you've learned but hard to learn something you should have learned when you were a child.) and against the rising tide of assimilation. He tells personal stories about studying Talmud with his grandfather and his time fighting in World War II. One particularly amusing one is how he was disappointed to learn that "an eye for an eye" meant compensatory damage payments as it was one of his best arguments for rejecting observance altogether at age 14 when he would have rather gone to Saturday afternoon movies.
A caveat in that if you are an observant Jew, you will probably not learn much from this book. This is the book that rabbis have conversion candidates read in order to make sure that everyone has a good idea as to what is going to happen if the conversion goes through.
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Format: Hardcover
Herman Wouk blends Jewish history, Jewish practice, and personal experience in a wonderful tour for Judaism, appropriate for nonJews, Jews, and even those who think they know it all.
While his discussions of Shabbat, Hanukah, and other observances are fine reading, Wouk reaches his peak when discussing his own and his family's experiences--his grandfather, whom he obviously admired a great deal, his father, who spent an immense sum of money (for the times) to buy the honor of reading the book of Jonah on Yom Kippur afternoon. Wonderful images of a time in Judaism gone by.
I do not find it limiting that Wouk writes from an Orthodox perspective (he assumes, for example, that only a man would wear a tallit, which is the Orthodox practice, but not the Conservative). Wouk was what he was, and I do not think he should have modified his book to an egalitarian perspective to satisfy the wolves of political correctness.
Well worth an annual read and a place on your shelf.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A formidable book, written for everyone, from the pious Chassidim who seems to know all about Judaism to the secular Wall Street Jewish Banker who is far from his faith but feels every now and then the sweet but stern internal calling of his demanding heritage

The best chapters,in my opinion, are related to the experiences related to the secular Jewish people when they got involved in the Jewish religious rituals at the synagogue or at home during childhood, "one feels like he is telling ones own experiences when he was a Jewish kid, so unexplained and uneasy situations at that time become hilarious

Generally speaking, Wouk, who is observant, tried to be very open avoiding dogma and intended to convey to the Jewish reader the precious value of his 4000 years heritage and a way to learn how to feel proud about it.

Wouk did not forget the non-Jewish reader either, he wrote this book with simple concepts and language so anyone interested about Judaism can get a good basic introduction through these pages
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By A Customer on June 10, 1999
Format: Paperback
A must read for all Jews and those considering becoming Jews.Wouk gives, among other things, an understanding of why it is important to observe the Jewish dietary laws and why improvised prayer has meaning.The result is that I am now incorporating more observances into my daily life. For the first time, I see their importance. This book has changed my life.
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Format: Paperback
Well written, engaging, and comprehensive but concise, this introduction to Judaism (from an Orthodox perspective) can be read straight through like a novel or used for reference. It includes every topic you'd want in an introduction: the Sabbath, the High Holy Days, kosher rules, the Torah, the Talmud, Hasidism, Israel, and so forth. Wouk's obvious love of Judaism is contagious, even to non-Jewish readers like me.

One warning: When I read this book for a class on Judaism at a Christian seminary, some of the students had trouble with the extravagantly non-gender-inclusive language. I personally can deal with masculine language for all humanity in books more than a few decades old (this was first published in 1957), but when Wouk assumes that the reader is male, as when he refers to the reader's beard (I'm female)--well, it's almost too funny to be offensive.

In any case, I highly recommend it.

P.S. (eight years later): I assigned this book as the main text on Judaism (along with the Bible) in a college class on Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, and the students really liked it.
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