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The Yiddish Policemen's Union: A Novel av…
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The Yiddish Policemen's Union: A Novel (urspr publ 2007; utgåvan 2007)

av Michael Chabon

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
9,288396595 (3.8)577
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.
Medlem:bonniev
Titel:The Yiddish Policemen's Union: A Novel
Författare:Michael Chabon
Info:HarperCollins (2007), Hardcover, 432 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
Betyg:***
Taggar:Sitlka, Alaska, Yiddish resettlement, chess, police procedural

Verkdetaljer

The Yiddish Policemen's Union av Michael Chabon (2007)

  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
    Långt farväl av Raymond Chandler (melmore)
    melmore: Another book with a detective protagonist attempting to come to terms with his life and his relationships.
  7. 31
    Konspirationen mot Amerika av Philip Roth (ljbwell)
    ljbwell: Alternate history based in the US where WWII has had a different outcome.
  8. 42
    The Thin Man av Dashiell Hammett (Pagemistress)
  9. 21
    Farthing av Jo Walton (BeckyJP)
  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 577 omnämnanden

engelska (384)  franska (4)  nederländska (3)  italienska (2)  danska (1)  katalanska (1)  spanska (1)  Alla språk (396)
Visa 1-5 av 396 (nästa | visa alla)
Probably my favourite book of all the fiction I read that year.

I enjoy a good film noir detective story and this starts out just like so many of the best: our protagonist (Is he a hero? He's the best we'll get) wakes hung-over and miserable in his room at the fleapit hotel, to find his neighbour is dead and now that's his problem to solve. So much, so Sam Spade. But now we find this West Coast isn't LA, it's Alaska - or rather the Federal District of Sitka, in an alternate timeline where this became a Jewish homeland and refuge from Europe. This isn't the Promised Land, it's the Land Grudgingly Loaned and now Uncle Sam wants it back.

It's the observed details that make this. Hebrew is a oddity kept for shul and the language of the streets is Yiddish, His partner is one of the few gentiles in town, being from the First Nations. And when there's no food, at least there's chess. Chabon never makes do with one word when he can fit a dozen in there. As much a mensch as his bedraggled and trampled hero.

I loved this. Unusually for fiction I'll probably read it again. ( )
  Andy_Dingley | Mar 3, 2021 |
In Chabon's alternate history, the Jewish country of Israel doesn't exist, and Jewish refugees escaping from the Holocaust are granted the safety and autonomy of a strip of Alaska. Now 60 years later, the Jewish land of Sitka is about to revert back to the United States. That's the background against which a Jewish policeman, living in a fleabag hotel, ends up investigating the murder of another tenant of the hotel.

Still reeling from his divorce a couple of years earlier the more recent death of his sister, and faced with an uncertain future after the reversion, Meyer Landsman is a mess, but he's a good detective, determined to find the killer, even if it means disobeying a direct order from his newly promoted ex-wife who is now his boss.

In prose full of metaphors and similies, Chabon takes Meyer and the reader into the part of Sitka where the Black Hats -- ultra Orthodox Jews -- live and oversee life in the district. The simple murder of a former chess prodigy/current drug addict is anything but simple. This is a fascinating look at what could have been, as well as a compelling story about a murder, grief, and a community determined to keep surviving all the obstacles put in their way. ( )
  ShellyS | Feb 5, 2021 |
I've had a hardback copy of this book on my shelf for some time, but kept shying away from it. What a mistake.

Part detective story, part alternative history, part romance, part discussion of religious dogma, this enchanting book held my attention like the best suspenseful mystery, so that I read it almost in one sitting. What would have happened if Israel had never taken hold in 1948? What would happen if you gave a whole people a 20 year lease on which to lick their wounds? And what would happen when one kind of hope collides with another? Some of the Jews in the borrowed land of Alaska want to try to win back Palestine, some want to stay, some are fearful of eviction, again, as has happened for millenia. And in the midst of this, a chess wizard is found dead in a seedy hotel, in which a guilt-ridden police detective spends his non-working hours drinking his sorrows. The classic Chandler-esque noir plot melds perfectly with the deeper discussions to produce a book that is very hard to put down. ( )
1 rösta ffortsa | Jan 7, 2021 |
Kind of a neat twist on gumshoe fiction. I didn't love it, but I liked it. ( )
  dllh | Jan 6, 2021 |
Every time I read this I mark my Calendar for a year ahead so I can read it again. ( )
  david_elliott | Jan 3, 2021 |
Visa 1-5 av 396 (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, WillIllustratörmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Staehle, WillOmslagmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
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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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