A Blessing on the Moon

A Blessing on the Moon

4.5 4
by Joseph Skibell
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

Joseph Skibell’s magical tale about the Holocaust—a fable inspired by fact—received unanimous nationwide acclaim when first published in 1997.

At the center of A Blessing on the Moon is Chaim Skibelski. Death is merely the beginning of Chaim’s troubles. In the opening pages, he is shot along with the other Jews of his small Polish village.

Overview

Joseph Skibell’s magical tale about the Holocaust—a fable inspired by fact—received unanimous nationwide acclaim when first published in 1997.

At the center of A Blessing on the Moon is Chaim Skibelski. Death is merely the beginning of Chaim’s troubles. In the opening pages, he is shot along with the other Jews of his small Polish village. But instead of resting peacefully in the World to Come, Chaim, for reasons unclear to him, is left to wander the earth, accompanied by his rabbi, who has taken the form of a talking crow. Chaim’s afterlife journey is filled with extraordinary encounters whose consequences are far greater than he realizes.

Not since art Spiegelman’s Maus has a work so powerfully evoked one of the darkest moments of the twentieth century with such daring originality.

Editorial Reviews

The Boston Globe
“Brilliant . . . Astonishing.”
The Washington Post
“As magical as it is macabre.” —The New Yorker
The Denver Post
“As mesmerizing as a folk tale, as rich as gold itself.” —The Denver Post
Houston Chronicle
“A compelling tour de force, a surreal but thoroughly accessible page-turner.”
The New Yorker
“As magical as it is macabre.”
From the Publisher
“Startlingly original . . . Recalls the dark, hallucinatory world of Jerzy Kosinski’s The Painted Bird while at the same time surpassing it.” —The Washington Post
NY Times Book Review
Rich with emotion, humor, and invention.
AudioFile
“The considerable talents of author Joseph Skibell and narrator Allen Lewis Rickman join to deliver a captivating Holocaust story that is as magical and joyous as it is tragic and heartrending. . . . an utterly engrossing story that, like Chaim’s odyssey, cannot be abandoned.”
AudioFile [Earphones Award]

Library Journal
Chaim Skibelski climbs out of a mass grave containing 3000 residents of his Polish village who were slaughtered along with him. Shortly after realizing he's dead, he rouses the decayed ghosts of his neighbors and, in search of the "World to Come," the grisly parade wanders through the forest to a luxury hotel, where the horrors of the Holocaust are reenacted. Actor Allen Rickman brilliantly narrates Skibell's debut novel, a macabre tale first published in 1997 to rave reviews and newly available on audio. His tone of determined cheerfulness creates the mood of a Yiddish folktale. An unconventional but interesting addition to Holocaust literature collections that will appeal to listeners who enjoy magic realism. [This audio edition was a Wyatt's World "Best Bets" selection, LJ Xpress 11/8/10; the Berkley Trade pb was described as leaving "a lasting impression," LJ 9/1/97.—Ed.]—Janet Martin, Southern Pines P.L., NC

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781616200183
Publisher:
Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill
Publication date:
09/07/2010
Pages:
272
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.10(h) x 0.90(d)

What People are saying about this

J.M. Coetzee
A story that blends horror with mad humor and heart-stirring pathos. A work of striking originality.

Meet the Author

Possessing “a gifted, committed imagination” (New York Times), Joseph Skibell is the author of three novels, A Blessing on the Moon, The English Disease, and A Curable Romantic; the forthcoming collection of nonfiction stories My Father’s Guitar and Other Imaginary Things; and another forthcoming nonfiction work, Six Memos from the Last Millennium: A Novelist Reads the Talmud. He has received numerous awards, including the Rosenthal Foundation Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, the Sami Rohr Award in Jewish Literature, Story magazine’s Short Short-Story Prize, and the Turner Prize for First Fiction.

As director of the Richard Ellmann Lectures in Modern Literature from 2008 to 2015, he sang and played guitar onstage with both Margaret Atwood and Paul Simon. A professor at Emory University, Skibell has also taught at the University of Wisconsin and the Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas. Recently a Senior Fellow at the Bill and Carol Fox Center for Humanistic Inquiry, he is the Winship Distinguished Research Professor in the Humanities at Emory University. A native Texan, he lives mostly in his head.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

Blessing on the Moon 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very powerful. Unlike anything you've ever read. A major work.
Guest More than 1 year ago
An amazing book. A bizzare journey, one that seems to have spring from a brilliantly strange and yet simple conciet. Not just a ghost story, not really just a holocaust story but lyrical and memorable.