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The Yiddish Policemen's Union (2007)

av Michael Chabon

Andra författare: Se under Andra författare.

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
9,497405601 (3.8)588
In a world in which Alaska, rather than Israel, has become the homeland for the Jews following World War II, Detective Meyer Landsman and his half-Tlingit partner Berko investigate the death of a heroin-addled chess prodigy.
  1. 151
    Kavalier & Clays fantastiska äventyr av Michael Chabon (Pagemistress)
  2. 102
    Staden & staden av China Miéville (grizzly.anderson, kaipakartik)
    grizzly.anderson: Both are police procedural mysteries set in slightly alternate worlds.
    kaipakartik: Both are detective tales in alternate settings
  3. 51
    Mannen i det höga slottet av Philip K. Dick (AlanPoulter)
    AlanPoulter: Both are alternate histories set in a USA changed by World War Two.
  4. 20
    Finch av Jeff VanderMeer (kaipakartik)
    kaipakartik: Detective tales set in a fast deteriorating city
  5. 20
    The Last Policeman av Ben H. Winters (EerierIdyllMeme)
    EerierIdyllMeme: Noir mysteries exploring interesting hypothetical settings with ticking timers.
  6. 31
    Konspirationen mot Amerika av Philip Roth (ljbwell)
    ljbwell: Alternate history based in the US where WWII has had a different outcome.
  7. 32
    Långt farväl av Raymond Chandler (melmore)
    melmore: Another book with a detective protagonist attempting to come to terms with his life and his relationships.
  8. 21
    Farthing av Jo Walton (BeckyJP)
  9. 43
    Gäckande skuggan av Dashiell Hammett (Pagemistress)
  10. 00
    Reservation Blues av Sherman Alexie (PghDragonMan)
    PghDragonMan: Both deal with ethnic conflict and searching for identity.
  11. 00
    The Ministry of Special Cases av Nathan Englander (hairball)
    hairball: While one is an alternative history and the other is based around historical fact (Argentina's disappeared), they have a similar flavor to them.
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» Se även 588 omnämnanden

engelska (392)  franska (4)  nederländska (3)  italienska (2)  danska (1)  katalanska (1)  spanska (1)  Alla språk (404)
Visa 1-5 av 404 (nästa | visa alla)
I'm going to start out by saying that I love alternate history. I think it is so fun and so cool to look at the world and think about what could have happened differently so I was intrigued by this book. Unfortunately I didn't love this book as much as I wanted to. There were definitely parts of the book that really sucked me in and I really enjoyed reading about but there were also a lot of times that the story just completely lost me and I got very confused. I think part of the reason that happened was because this book is about a culture where I'm not super familiar with the intricacies of the lifestyle. Also Michael Chabon's writing style also just confused me a lot and it didn't work with me. I did like the characters and the unique setting but because I was kind of confused throughout this book about what exactly was happening, I couldn't love the characters as much as I wanted to. I really didn't hate this book. I still really like the idea of it and I think it was really interesting but something about this book just wasn't for me and I really wish I could have liked it a bit more. ( )
  AKBouterse | Oct 14, 2021 |
More like 2.5. Might need to reread this again ( )
  jaydenmccomiskie | Sep 27, 2021 |
A fantastically interesting premise, a fully fleshed-out world, a convoluted murder mystery with many twists and turns, a bleak and funny story. What more could you want?

Update as of second read: this is definitely my favorite Michael Chabon novel. People may call the text flowery or overwritten, but I dunno what to tell you... I kind of agree, but I love it. ( )
  misslevel | Sep 22, 2021 |
A book that lured me in with the promise of a noir detective novel, but turns out to be an alternate history and more. Excellent world building, great characters. ( )
  Enno23 | Aug 15, 2021 |
Chabon wrote an article about reading Say It In Yiddish, published in 1958. He describes it as the saddest book he owns, its phrases used and understood by fewer and fewer people on the globe, none of whom probably need to know how to ask for the bellhop in Yiddish. But what if you could go traveling to a place where Yiddish was the dominant language? The conjuring of this world is a delightful piece of imagination. The tone is noir because he's telling a hard boiled detective story. But the feeling I was left with was breathless admiration, as after a wonderful musical solo. Not flawless but very enjoyable. ( )
  Je9 | Aug 10, 2021 |
Visa 1-5 av 404 (nästa | visa alla)
Chabon is a spectacular writer. He does a witty turn reinventing Yiddish for the modern Alaskan Jews - of course the lingua franca of Jews without an Israel - just a little of which I, with only faintly remembered childhood Yiddish, could grasp. A mobile phone is a shoyfer (perhaps because, like the ram's horn, it calls you), a gun is a sholem (a Yiddish version of a Peacemaker?). Chabon is a language magician, turning everything into something else just for the delight of playing tricks with words. He takes the wry, underbelly vision of the ordinary that the best of noir fiction offers and ratchets it up to the limit. Nothing is allowed to be itself; all people and events are observed as an echo of something else. Voices are like "an onion rolling in a bucket", or rusty forks falling. An approaching motorcycle is "a heavy wrench clanging against a cold cement floor. The flatulence of a burst balloon streaking across the living room and knocking over a lamp." Chabon's ornate prose makes Chandler's fruity observations of the world look quite plain. Nothing is described as just the way it is. Nothing is let be. He writes like a dream and has you laughing out loud, applauding the fun he has with language and the way he takes the task of a writer and runs delighted rings around it.

For the most part, Chabon's writing serves the knotted mystery that is being unravelled, but there is eventually a point where it begins to weary the mind, where the elaborations of things get in the way of the things themselves and the narrative gets sucked under by style. The compulsory paragraph of Byzantine physical description whenever another character arrives on the scene starts to seem an irritating interlude; another over-reaching cadenza. Though it seems churlish to complain about such a vivid talent, a little less would have been enough already.
 
It’s obvious that the creation of this strange, vibrant, unreal world is Chabon’s idea of heaven. He seems happy here, almost giddy, high on the imaginative freedom that has always been the most cherished value in his fiction.
 
Some of the pleasures of The Yiddish Policemen’s Union are, actually, distinctly Dan Brown–ish. Mr. Chabon often ends chapters with cliffhangers that might be tiresome in the hands of a lesser writer (say, Dan Brown). Here, they’re over-the-top suspenseful, savory and delicious.
 
More important, Mr. Chabon has so thoroughly conjured the fictional world of Sitka — its history, culture, geography, its incestuous and byzantine political and sectarian divisions — that the reader comes to take its existence for granted. By the end of the book, we feel we know this chilly piece of northern real estate, where Yiddish is the language of choice, the same way we feel we have come to know Meyer Landsman — this “secular policeman” who has learned to sail “double-hulled against tragedy,” ever wary of “the hairline fissures, the little freaks of torque” that can topple a boat in the shallows.
 
This novel makes you think, but it is an ordeal to read. The problem: Chabon has mixed two very dark story lines that jar the reader. There is the real tragedy of Sitka's wandering Jews, and then there is the faux bleakness of the noir genre with its posturing attitude. The central character comes across as a Jewish Humphrey Bogart wannabe, not a three-dimensional character who can shoulder a 400-plus-page novel about exile, fanatics and longing.
tillagd av MikeBriggs | ändraUSA Today, Deirdre Donahue (Apr 30, 2007)
 

» Lägg till fler författare (11 möjliga)

Författarens namnRollTyp av författareVerk?Status
Chabon, Michaelprimär författarealla utgåvorbekräftat
Carlson-Stanisic, LeahFormgivaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Fischer, AndreaÖversättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Riegert, PeterBerättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Staehle, WillOmslagmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Staehle, WillIllustratörmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
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"And they went to sea in a sieve."
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Nine months Landsman's been flopping at the Hotel Zamenhof without any of his fellow residents managing to get themselves murdered. Now somebody has put a bullet in the brain of the occupant of 208, a yid who was calling himself Emanuel Lasker.
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He likes the leash ... Without it, he doesn't sleep.
It has nothing to do with religion ... It has everything to do, God damn it, with fathers.
A Messiah who actually arrives is no good to anybody.
I don't care what is written. I don't care what supposedly got promised to some sandal-wearing idiot whose claim to fame is that he was ready to cut his own son's throat for the sake of a hare-brained idea. I don't care about red heifers and patriarchs and locusts. A bunch of old bone in the sand. My homeland is in my hat. It's in my ex-wife's tote bag.
God damn them all. I always knew they were there. Down there in Washington. Up there ever our heads. Holding the strings. Setting the agenda. Of course I knew that. We all knew that. We all grew up knowing that, right? We are here on sufferance. Houseguests. But they ignored us for so long. Left us to our own devices. It was easy to kid yourself. Make you think you had a little autonomy, in a small way, nothing fancy. I thought I was working for everyone. You know. Serving the public. Upholding the law. But really I was just working for Cashdollar.
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In a world in which Alaska, rather than Israel, has become the homeland for the Jews following World War II, Detective Meyer Landsman and his half-Tlingit partner Berko investigate the death of a heroin-addled chess prodigy.

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