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A Seat at the Table: A Novel of Forbidden Choices
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A Seat at the Table: A Novel of Forbidden Choices

4.6 10
by Joshua Halberstam
 

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Lust • Tradition • Love • Faith • Self • Family

Elisha walks through Brooklyn with side curls tucked behind his ears and an oversized black hat on his head. He is a Chassidic Orthodox Jew and the son of a revered rabbi in whose footsteps he's expected to follow. When he leaves his insular world to take classes at a

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Seat at the Table: A Novel of Forbidden Choices 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
CGNYC More than 1 year ago
I thought that A Seat At The Table was a terrific read. It is personal without being sentimental, it gives an honest picture of the conflict that any intelligent and curious young person might be exposed to growing up. It's about Chassidism, but it might just as well be about any other religious setting with strict rules of observance and little tolerance for deviating souls. The relationship between father and son is deep and touching, and it shows the profound love and generosity of mind of the father towards his "erring" son. The ending is beautiful, as it completes the cycle of a son who feels he needs to break out but deep down knows that the ties to the safety of his home, his father, will never be severed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Joshua Halberstam has written an engaging book about Chassidism and a young man's struggle between loyalty to his family's traditional religion -- Chassidic Judasim -- and his desire for a a more modern approach to religion and philosophy. Interspersed throughout the plotline are absolutely delightful tales from Chassidic lore. The book centers on the modern Jewish dilemma -- how much Jewish tradition can you retain in an culture that allows you and even encourages you to assimilate, and with this story we realize that even the most traditional, insulated American Jewish communities face this issue. And then there is that perennial right of passage to adulthood -- how do you please your parents and still please yourself, how do you respect traditional religious values and still embrace modernity. Joshua creates amazingly realistic scenes -- whether the setting is the university library, a local diner or his family's holiday dinnertable. And his characters are all multi-dimensional, realistic and admirable. I loved the book's peak into Chassidic Judasim. I loved the love between Joshua and the people in his family and in the life he establishes outside his family. I loved the settings. And when I was finished reading the book, I loved remembering the characters, the settings, the tension, the love, and especially, the Chassidic stories. Clearly, this is a book worth buying, a book worth reading and a book worth remembering.
BellFL More than 1 year ago
Well written. Hard to put down. Glimpse into another culture. Thought provoking chassidic stories that talk to the general human and spiritual condition. Very real and relatable characters and family relationships. Highly recommend.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A look into another culture in america and the confusion it brings to the young.
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