- File Size: 1175 KB
- Print Length: 454 pages
- Publication Date: March 25, 2012
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B007OWONSC
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #986,954 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
An American Family Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
Peter Lefcourt is the author of seven or eight previous novels. He's a witty, perceptive writer who always writes about topical interests. His book, "The Woody", is hands-down the best political satire I've read and I'm still waiting for the movie version of his novel about gay baseball players, "The Dreyfus Affair", which has been optioned by two studios. But in this book, "An American Family", he lets up on the satire and instead writes with a breadth of wisdom about the ten main characters and many more secondary ones in a sweeping story that will speak to all of us who have experienced the changes in American society.
I don't know why this novel has only been issued in e-book form and why it was priced at the very reasonable price of $3.99. There are some spelling errors in the text and the name of one of the minor characters has been changed in one scene, but I think those editing errors are more often found in e-books than in print copies. But this is simply a family saga that should not be missed by anyone with an e-reader. Simply superb.
That said "An American Family" caught me by surprise, as it's a departure from the usual satire and wit that I've come to love from Lefcourt. The book tells the story of several generations of a Jewish family in New York. However it's not your usual book of "this is my family and they're awesome" but rather a deeply rich, engaging story of a family, their turmoil, success, and heartaches. You see a family from the inside and get to know their individual personalities. As a boring gentile I found the Jewish culture to be very educational and entertaining. Now I finally understand what all those words meant that the old Jewish men at the chess club would say when I was a kid.
The best part about An American Family is that the book never drags you down. There's always something to look forward to and I found myself not wanting to put it down the more I read. You might also find yourself comparing the characters and events in the book to your own family and life. From Woodstock to Brooklyn, the Kennedy assassination to 9/11. The most poignant moments in the book for me were how Lefcourt wrote of September 11, 2011 and the emotions of everyone in the family. Very moving.
If you've ever thought you had a quirky family, or ever said to yourself "you could write a book about this family" then you'll love "An American Family". It's not the usual satire that many have come to expect from Lefcourt, but this book proves he's a brilliant writer that's a cut above the rest.
Perhaps because of my own childhood experiences, Lefcourt's characters come alive for me; three-dimensional, passionate and flawed....especially Jackie, who definitely resides somewhere in my family. And Bobbie, the rebellious hippie, also belongs there, along with the usual smattering of over-achieving doctors and artists. Despite the diverse personalities, the different adult paths taken, the retained real or imagined wounds inflicted, the family somehow endures, held together by a mixture of guilt, love and DNA.
This book is a significant departure from the author's previous works, with their edgy satirical indictments of Hollywood and the media. There's a touch of that in Bobby's adventures in the music industry, but most of the humor of An American Family is softer, exisiting in the disconnect between the immigrant older generation and the eagerly-assimilating children. I don't know if Jewish families are any more colorful, neurotic, or empathic than other ethnic groups. But even without my pre-existing mind-set, this is a family epic that will touch your heart.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Last month I fell in love with the Perl family! Peter Lefcourt's witty, wild and wonderful written characters touched my heart, and brought back so many truthful, warm, familiar... Read morePublished 8 months ago by G Miller
This is an excellent tale of a Jewish family and the events that influenced all of our lives from the 1950's to 2011. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Chelan
Peter Lefcort.... who wrote the Dreyfuss Affair is one of the wittier writers around and this, his latest, continues moving his reputation in that regard forward.Published on February 3, 2014 by Cagney & Lacey's WebSquad
A family, not your own but you quickly become a member and recognize the truth of each character, the authenticity . Read morePublished on October 12, 2013 by swede girl
Not sure why I was enticed to read. Not a particularly interesting family with no redeeming characteristics I could discover.Published on April 27, 2013 by Vintage Racer
I was hooked right from the first sentence. I was in 5th grade at the beginning of the novel. What a wonderful trip down memory lane. Read morePublished on March 30, 2013 by Joanne
When President Kennedy is assassinated, people across the United States were shocked. This is no different for the Perl family in Long Island. Read morePublished on November 8, 2012 by Lisa
This is not the best book you will ever read, but it still intrigued me enough to read it all the way through. Read morePublished on October 15, 2012 by KLowe