The Good, the Bad, and the Hungry Sale
 
 

Recently Viewed clear list


Original Essays | June 20, 2014

Lisa Howorth: IMG So Many Books, So Many Writers



I'm not a bookseller, but I'm married to one, and Square Books is a family. And we all know about families and how hard it is to disassociate... Continue »

spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$6.50
List price: $16.00
Used Trade Paper
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
Qty Store Section
1 Burnside Literature- A to Z

This title in other editions

Songs for the Butcher's Daughter

by

Songs for the Butcher's Daughter Cover

ISBN13: 9781416538714
ISBN10: 1416538712
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

Only 1 left in stock at $6.50!

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Summer, sweltering, 1996. A book warehouse in western Massachusetts. A man at the beginning of his adult life — and the end of his career rope — becomes involved with a woman, a language, and a great lie that will define his future. Most auspiciously of all, he runs across Itsik Malpesh, a ninetysomething Russian immigrant who claims to be the last Yiddish poet in America. When a set of accounting ledgers in which Malpesh has written his memoirs surfaces — twenty-two volumes brimming with adventure, drama, deception, passion, and wit — the young man is compelled to translate them, telling Malpesh's story as his own life unfolds, and bringing together two paths that coincide in shocking and unexpected ways.

Moving from revolutionary Russia to New York's Depression-era Lower East Side to millennium's-end Baltimore with drama, adventure, and boisterous, feisty charm to spare, the unpeeling of this friendship is a story of the entire twentieth century. For fans of Nicole Krauss, Nathan Englander, Richard Powers, Amy Bloom, and Lore Segal, this book will amaze at every turn: narrated by two poets (one who doesn't know he is and one who doesn't know he isn't), it is a wise and warm look at the constant surprises and ineluctable ravages of time. It's a book about religion, love, and typesetting — how one passion can be used to goad and thwart the other — and most of all, about how faith in the power of words can survive even the death of a language.

A novel of faith lost and hope found in translation, Songs for the Butcher's Daughter is at once an immigrant's epic saga, a love story for the ages, a Yiddish-inflected laughing-through-tears tour of world history for Jews and Gentiles alike, and a testament to Manseau's ambitious genius.

Synopsis:

In this acclaimed fiction debut, "a rich, often ironic homage to Yiddish culture and language" (Publishers Weekly), Peter Manseau weaves 100 years of Jewish history, the sad fate of an ancient language, and a love story shaped by destiny into a truly great American novel.

In a five-story walkup in Baltimore, nonagenarian Itsik Malpesh—the last Yiddish poet in America—spends his days lamenting the death of his language and dreaming of having his memoirs and poems translated into a living tongue. So when a twenty-one-year-old translator and collector of Judaica crosses his path one day, he goes to extraordinary efforts to enlist the young man’s services. And what the translator finds in ten handwritten notebooks is a chronicle of the twentieth century. From the Easter Sunday Pogrom of Kishinev, Russia, to the hellish garment factories of Manhattan’s Lower East Side, Itsik Malpesh recounts a tumultuous, heartrending, and colorful past. But the greatest surprise is yet to come: for the two men share a connection as unlikely as it is life-affirming.

With the ardent and feisty Itsik Malpesh, Peter Manseau has created a narrator for the ages and given him a story that will win over readers’ hearts and keep them turning pages long into the night. Songs for the Butcher’s Daughter is a literary triumph.

About the Author

Peter Manseau is the author of Vows and coauthor of Killing the Buddha. His writing has also appeared in The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, and on National Public Radio's All Things Considered. A founding editor of the award-winning webzine KillingTheBuddha.com, he is now the editor of Search, The Magazine of Science, Religion, and Culture. He lives with his wife and two daughters in Washington, D.C., where he studies religion and teaches writing at Georgetown University.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Shari from Lake Forest, November 3, 2010 (view all comments by Shari from Lake Forest)
Songs for the Butcher's Daughter enchanted me from the first page. I've read and loved many of the authors who are compared with its author, Peter Manseau: Nicole Krauss, Nathan Englander, Amy Bloom. Though Manseau's book is original, he travels in good literary company. I loved the story so much that I recommended it to my book group. So many topics are addressed in this book, and one that stands out is how to translate authentically, staying true to the original voice without being clumsy in the new language. The problem of translating a book can be applied to translating a culture so that those who are not born to it can still understand, and therefore respect it. The question of identity moves and mutates with all the characters, until it's obvious that no one is who he claims he is. It forces readers to ask themselves: who am I and how do I journey in this world? After you read this story, you will want to read it again, savoring every moment. Then you must also read Outwitting History by Aaron Lansky, the true story of the National Yiddish Book Center.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(2 of 4 readers found this comment helpful)

Product Details

ISBN:
9781416538714
Author:
Manseau, Peter
Publisher:
Free Press
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Religious - General
Subject:
Jews -- United States.
Subject:
Translators
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Paperback
Publication Date:
20090631
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
400
Dimensions:
8.44 x 5.5 in 11.9 oz

Other books you might like

  1. The Warden (Dover Thrift Editions)
    New Trade Paper $3.95
  2. A Girl Named Zippy: Growing Up Small...
    Used Trade Paper $1.95
  3. The Last of the Angels: A Modern... Used Trade Paper $5.95
  4. Sky Time in Gray's River: Living for...
    Used Hardcover $9.95
  5. Crossing BOK Chitto: A Choctaw Tale... New Trade Paper $8.95
  6. Beowulf on the Beach: What to Love...
    Used Trade Paper $5.50

Related Subjects


Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

Songs for the Butcher's Daughter Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$6.50 In Stock
Product details 400 pages Free Press - English 9781416538714 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , In this acclaimed fiction debut, "a rich, often ironic homage to Yiddish culture and language" (Publishers Weekly), Peter Manseau weaves 100 years of Jewish history, the sad fate of an ancient language, and a love story shaped by destiny into a truly great American novel.

In a five-story walkup in Baltimore, nonagenarian Itsik Malpesh—the last Yiddish poet in America—spends his days lamenting the death of his language and dreaming of having his memoirs and poems translated into a living tongue. So when a twenty-one-year-old translator and collector of Judaica crosses his path one day, he goes to extraordinary efforts to enlist the young man’s services. And what the translator finds in ten handwritten notebooks is a chronicle of the twentieth century. From the Easter Sunday Pogrom of Kishinev, Russia, to the hellish garment factories of Manhattan’s Lower East Side, Itsik Malpesh recounts a tumultuous, heartrending, and colorful past. But the greatest surprise is yet to come: for the two men share a connection as unlikely as it is life-affirming.

With the ardent and feisty Itsik Malpesh, Peter Manseau has created a narrator for the ages and given him a story that will win over readers’ hearts and keep them turning pages long into the night. Songs for the Butcher’s Daughter is a literary triumph.

spacer
spacer
  • back to top
Follow us on...




Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.