Hush

Hush

by Eishes Chayil
4.6 28

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Overview

Hush by Eishes Chayil

Inside the closed community of Borough Park, where most Chassidim live, the rules of life are very clear, determined by an ancient script written thousands of years before down to the last detail-and abuse has never been a part of it. But when thirteen-year-old Gittel learns of the abuse her best friend has suffered at the hands of her own family member, the adults in her community try to persuade Gittel, and themselves, that nothing happened. Forced to remain silent, Gittel begins to question everything she was raised to believe.

A richly detailed and nuanced book, one of both humor and depth, understanding and horror, this story explains a complex world that remains an echo of its past, and illuminates the conflict between yesterday's traditions and today's reality.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780802722706
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Publication date: 09/14/2010
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 301,724
File size: 692 KB
Age Range: 14 Years

About the Author

EISHES CHAYIL (a pseudonym meaning "woman of valor"; pronounced AY-shis CHEYE-el) was raised in a world of Chassidic schools, synagogues, and summer camps and is a direct descendant of the major founders and leaders in the Chassidic world. She holds a masters degree in creative writing and has worked as a journalist for several international Orthodox newspapers. She lives on the East Coast with her family.
Eishes Chayil (a pseudonym meaning "woman of valor"; pronounced AY-shis CHEYE-el) was raised in a world of Chassidic schools, synagogues, and summer camps. She lives in New Jersey with her family.

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Hush 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 28 reviews.
IshChayal More than 1 year ago
On the surface, Hush is a now all too familiar tale - a young girl witnesses/experiences sexual abuse, lacks the context and ability to deal with it as a child and then has to grapple with the impact it has on her as an adult. But there is much more here than the surface. For one, there is the voice. In the hands of Aishes Chayil, Gittel emerges as one of the most unique voices in children's fiction in quite some time. She is both heartbreakingly naive and devastatingly aware, her sheltered innocence slowly giving away to something adult and knowing, yet never losing her pureness of tone. In the hands of a lesser author this would be an accomplishment - what makes Aishes Chayil's feat all the more masterful is the dual time periods of the book. Someone, she bridges the gap between the adult Gittel and the child Gittel - we never loses sight of who Gittel is and her unique, often whimsical point of view, and yet, with subtle strokes and shadings, the demarcation between child and adult is beautifully depicted. Finally, there is the tenderness with which Eishes Chayil manages to infuse her depiction of the Chassidic community. In a book like this, it would be all too easy to turn the community into a black and white cartoon of close minded cruelty. But Eishes Chayil does something truer here - she shows the community as it is, its strength, it's beauty and yes, its tragic flaws. She doesn't preach, she doesn't condemn she simply shows. And in showing she points the hard finger of truth where it needs to be pointed. Similarly, her characterizations are nuanced and shaded. Again, in a book like this, it would be easy to paint the men as patriarchal and oppressive and the women as docile and cowed. Eishes Chayil does something truer, particularly in her depiction of Gittel's father and later her husband. This story and its exquisite craftsmanship linger in my thoughts days after I've finished it, and I'm sure it will reward anyone fortunate enough to encounter it with the same.
AndyAC More than 1 year ago
Though a book about the Hassidic Community, it could be written about any group of people. Sadly, it is what we do. We keep quiet about such horrible abuses of our children, especially if by another family member. Choosing to believe instead, that the child is lying. A child who can't possibly have the words yet, or understand what is happening. Priests are sent to another parish, teachers to another school and sons............to Israel. We Jews are particularly skittish about letting the world at large know that we too are human and have all the same human failties as the rest of the world. I believe we would get more respect by letting the world at large know that no one will get away with hurting our children......no one. This book is about the bravery and suffering of two little girls. It's a must read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book is well written and seems to convey an honest and realistic view of the strengths and weakneses of the chassidic community.
sharon1JT More than 1 year ago
This very excellent book is about a child who was being abused. The signs were all there, but nobody noticed, or ignored. It’s also about the reluctant courage of another child. This book will make you laugh, be angry, and so very sad that this horror could and does happen.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I think i would like to read this book. It sounds interesting and i like books like this, plus my name is chayil ;)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a very interesting book and a quick page turner. It explains a lot about the life and role of a Chassidic woman. It is also very disturbing and depressing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A friend requested I read this book so that I could discuss it with her. This was one of the best books I have read this year. The writing style and subject matter captured my interest from page one. Eishes Chayil captures the innocence, the guilt, the childish thoughts of one too young to have experienced such ugliness.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very interesting and informative about the secrets and motivations of a community that most of us who are not part of the orthodox society find puzzling and in some instances, inconceivable. It was a surprise to learn the real purpose of the book as explained in the author's notes based on her own experience. Would definitely recommend it. A good book for discussion.
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Liz1978 More than 1 year ago
This is one of the best books that I have read. Primarly because it answered the questions that I had in regards to their customs. I finally understand why they act the way they do. I was schooled and finally understand their phylosophy although I may not agreed. This is defenitely a must read...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fuchscia More than 1 year ago
Being a fan of Chaim Potak from the beginning, and Naomi Ragen since her first book, I found "Hush" to be a page turner from page one! The story is one only too familiar, but the writing style and character development is fantastic, leaving the reader with a complete understanding and emotional attachment to each member of the story. I commend the author, not only is this fantastic work, but filled with honor and courage for a young woman in this community to stand up and tell her story!
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