Bittersweet Brooklyn: A Novel

Bittersweet Brooklyn: A Novel

by Thelma Adams

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781503904606
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Publication date: 11/06/2018
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 316,416
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Thelma Adams is the author of the bestselling historical novel The Last Woman Standing and the O, The Oprah Magazine pick Playdate. She coproduced the Emmy-winning Feud: Bette and Joan. Additionally, Adams is a prominent American film critic and an outspoken voice in the Hollywood community. She has been the in-house film critic for Us Weekly and the New York Post and has written essays, celebrity profiles, and reviews for Yahoo! Movies, the New York Times, O, The Oprah Magazine, Variety, the Hollywood Reporter, Parade, Marie Claire, and the Huffington Post. Adams studied history at the University of California, Berkeley, where she was valedictorian, and received her MFA from Columbia University. She lives in Upstate New York with her family.

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Bittersweet Brooklyn: A Novel 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Anonymous 27 days ago
Set in turn of the century New York, BITTERSWEET BROOKLYN follows the life of Thelma Schwartz from childhood into her thirties as she and her favorite brother Abie navigate the mean streets of Brooklyn in search of a better life. Author Thelma Adams shows off her storytelling skills as she explores resonant themes about grief, loss and the mementos we keep. Historical facts, along with captivating characters and quick dialogue, make for an extremely enjoyable novel.
Eileen-Charbonneau 3 months ago
Bittersweet Brooklyn by Thelma Adams opens on a scene as horrific as might be imagined. A young widow stumbles on a 1935 mob murder and is made its scrubwoman. The rest of the story tells how Thelma Lorber came to such a sorry place. It’s a grim portrait of a woman whose life is plagued by misery and abuse from her earliest memories. A vibrant being who tries to dance away her troubled life, she finds allies in her Italian immigrant neighbors, two brothers and finds a beautiful, troubled man for a husband. But both her past and present dogged loyalty to her mobster brother conspire to degrade. At her lowest point, she finds strength in providing for a son who seems destined for her path. A vivid and often heartrending tale, beautifully told.
Honolulubelle 4 months ago
Favorite Quotes: His response to those who disliked or disrespected him was schmuck. It was his favorite Yiddish word in a language that contained more bendy terms for shaming and cursing than the Eskimos had for snow. There’s nothing wrong with those gams, little sister. You got the magic leg. You step off a curb and shake it, and the Prince of Wales is going to stop his carriage. It aggravated her that Annie could nurture Julius, Adele, and Eli and, with a swivel of her head, spew dragon fire toward Thelma. Vulnerability had been a dangerous condition around Annie and Mama as they carped on the physiques of the people strolling past, laughing at this one’s little pecker visible in swim trunks too small, that one’s jiggling fat rolls as she lunged for a rogue rubber ball. Meeskait, they’d pronounce, little ugly one. What a tuchus, they’d say and point at someone with a seat that could fill a subway car. And yet, the pair hadn’t been bathing beauties, either: the walrus and the sea lion. Mama covered in a floral muumuu and Annie squeezed like a sausage into a swimsuit one size too small, revealing back fat that she didn’t notice from the front, impressed by her own cleavage. My Review: I marveled at the sublime storytelling and writing quality, even though the story was taut with tension and full of heartbreaking scenes and emotive insights that gutted me as I read, I couldn’t seem to put it down. I passionately despised the useless mother and heinous sister – they were atrocious creatures, yet expertly crafted. Every character was well-nuanced, cunningly detailed, and compellingly complex. The storylines were intriguing, shrewdly paced, and hit all the feels with occasional lashings of clever levity that had me laughing aloud. Thelma Adams’s word voodoo is strong; I was appalled, riveted, mesmerized, and totally engaged. She turned me inside out with this one – yet I regret nothing.
KerryACroucier 8 months ago
Compelling and Complex! An emotional read from start to finish, there were so many times I felt like crying in heartbreak. The saga of an immigrant Jewish family in early Twentieth Century New York, we see how circumstances shape the path of various family members and the lengths they go to in order to survive. A well-written historical novel, the story is so realistic in its depictions; I felt every emotion under the sun. For the most part, none of the characters were likeable, but some were down-right despicable in their behavior and treatment of people they should love. It’s a tribute to the author’s ability to craft complex characters and a compelling story that keeps the reader turning pages from the beginning, racing through to the bittersweet conclusion. This was an intense read with an unvarnished historical look at immigrant life in the early 1900’s that will resonate for a long time to come. #LakeUnion #BittersweetBrooklyn #ThelmaAdams
lsmoore_43 9 months ago
Thank you NetGalley, Lake Union and Thelma Adams. This was a hard book for me to read. It touched on so many things that happened to the youngest daughter in a much unloving family. Thelma was a baby who needed love as do all children. Her mother and sister didn’t know the meaning of the word love, caring or empathy. They are cruel and so mean. Very unlovable people. Abie and Louis were the boys that were just in the way. Annie, the oldest girl, was given complete control over everything, including the younger children. She treated them like they were less than human. The mother was so awful that I had a hard time with her. I hated her so much. She put Annie in the position she was in but there is no excuse for her being so full of hate for her younger siblings. This book is full of so much emotion. From the abuse that Annie and their mother thrusted on them to the pain of growing up in a broken family. No one goes through as much as Thelma. From the abuse as a baby to the stepdad that the mother chooses over her, mentally if not physically. Blame a child for the actions of an adult. That is such an awful thing. Thelma struggles through her whole life and at one point I got very angry with her. She should have been a better mother her own self. I have to admit that Annie was a very good mother though not a good sister. This book is so well written that you feel like you are there. You feel the pain and deplorable things done. The heartache of Thelma, Abie and Louis. The losses in their lives and the few good times. It was easy to see why Thelma never truly trusted anyone or felt loved. You can’t go through what she did and have trusting, loving, feelings. I could relate to some of the things that happened in her life. I felt bad for her. She as a child and an adult. She lost a lot and I believe she deserved so much more than she got. I loved how this book started then went back to let us know what lead up to what happened. Getting to know each character whether I hated them or really liked them. It was well written and the characters were well developed. I gave it 5 stars and it’s worth every one of them.
lauriesophee 9 months ago
This was one amazingly detailed novel! The setting is Brooklyn, New York in the 1920's and 1930"s. Families were struggling during this time. Thelma is a young Jewish girl who lives in a poor dysfunctional family. She craves attention and love. Her brother Abie understands his sister, but he is not around much. Abie is taking care of "business" to survive. Thelma continues at all costs, to look for that affection as a young girl and then as she grows up. Will she be able to find a life of happiness? How far will she go to help her brother when he needs her? This story is tough to read at times, but definitely intriguing. This was not a good time in America and people did whatever they had to do to survive and sometimes they did not make it. Well done! I felt as though I was transported back in time and felt the panic of Thelma and so many others.