Hope: A Tragedy: A Novel [Shalom Auslander] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. A New York Times Notable Book The rural town of. Hope: A Tragedy. Shalom Auslander. Riverhead and a total lack of surprise when disaster occurs, should consider Auslander’s debut novel. We all know that the Holocaust is a great source of comedy, right? OK, maybe not , but in the hands of the brilliant US writer Shalom Auslander.

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His attitude is fuelled by a whole Jewish history of suffering whose symbol is Anne Frank.

The central plot is about Solomon Kugel, an exurban who moves his family to this bucolic setting only to discover that the aged, decrepit, cantankerous Anne Frank is living in the attic of his new home—defecating in his forced air registers and writing a smutty novel.

Read my full review of this book at The Millions: I hate Woody Allen movies for the same reason: Nov 11, Sterlingcindysu rated it really liked it Shelves: Want to Read saving….

Refresh and try again. He remains caught between the desire to make things better and the belief that disaster lurks behind every street corner throughout the novel, Kugel jots down possible “last words” in a special notebook so shakom, when the time comes, he will be ready with the appropriate bon mots.


She’s a bitter old woman who swears, eats dead birds and defecates down air vents. Gerald Jacobs assesses a disarmingly funny, iconoclastic novel.

Hope: A Tragedy by Shalom Auslander

Hope is a useless lost cause. I don’t mind strong or simplistic language per se, if it makes sense, but a whole novel with a long line of basic dialogues, spiced up with godammits and fucks, isn’t exactly what I want to waste my time on.

Saturday 29 December My top novel of Open Preview See a Problem? Jun 18, Judith rated it liked it. The target of his satire is not the Holocaust itself but the mawkish self-absorption of those who use it for their own ends, who relish the hierarchy of victimhood rather than cherishing the triumph of survival. Stop hoping that people will don’t this and don’t that.

Hope: a Tragedy by Shalom Auslander: review – Telegraph

He is trying to manage history and suffering but is leaving his wife and son to fend for themselves. Anyway, Kugel is an extreme exaggeration of many of my thoughts and feelings.

No one was born there, no one died there, nothing of any historical import at all has ever happened there, which is why Solomon Kugel, like other urbanites fleeing their pasts and histories, decided to move his wife and young son there. An interesting thing about the auslanderr Must he, too, die? I found hopd book outrageously funny, but I am sure it’s not everyone’s cup of tea.


It’s always about the Holocaust, according to her, and she’ll be damned if anyone argues differently. Hope begets disappointment; recurring disappointment begets misery. A Woody Allen-esque neurotic Jew Solomon Kugel moves his wife, child, and mother to a farmhouse in the country only to discover a decrepit Auslahder Frank living in his attic. I am not thrilled.

Hope: A Tragedy by Shalom Auslander – review

So it is that Kugel becomes crushed by the weight of his own cultural baggage. I remember Cioran, in his essay, “The Trouble with Being Born”, develops the same theme, although in another register. He grew sha,om in an Orthodox Jewish neighborhood in Monsey, New York where he describes himself as having been “raised like a veal”.

I certainly had no idea what to expect with the combination of largely vitriol with praise from one from our book group. He’s quick and vivid, but that’s not why this novel should be praised.

Plus, wtf would I traagedy if this utopia actually came to fruition? This is one fucked up book.