Synopses & Reviews
Lust Tradition Love Faith Self Family
Elisha walks through Brooklyn with side curls tucked behind his ears and an oversized black hat on his head. He is a Chassidic Orthodox Jew and the son of a revered rabbi in whose footsteps he's expected to follow. When he leaves his insular world to take classes at a secular college, he vows to remain unchanged
PRAISE FOR A SEAT AT THE TABLE
A poignant depiction of a deeply loving father and a no less loving son desperate to find his own very different path without shattering the connection to his family, to his father.
Rabbi Joseph Telushkin, Author of Jewish Literacy and a Jewish Code of Ethics
Halberstam takes you deeply into the Chassidic community with a critical eye but a loving, understanding heart. This tender, compassionate coming-of-age story brims over with wisdom from the Jewish tradition. It's worth reading for the Chassidic tales alone.
David Grubin, Documentary Filmmaker, The Jewish Americans, LBJ
Joshua Halberstam knows the soul of Chassidic Brooklyn better than anyone without payes and a black hat. He explores that world with a unique combination of skepticism and compassion. A Seat at the Table is a lovely and deeply humane book.
Melvin Jules Bukiet, Author of Strange Fire and Neurotica
In this novel of fathers and sons, faith and doubt, Joshua Halberstam illuminates a world rich with religious tradition and Chassidic stories, and he proves himself to be a master storyteller in his own right. A Seat at the Table is unusually wise, genuine, and always affecting.
Tova Mirvis, author of The Ladies Auxiliary and The Outside World
"A Seat at the Table is unusually wise, genuine, and always affecting."
Tova Mirvis, author of The Ladies Auxilliary
Elisha grows up in post-war Brooklyn in a family of Chassidim, a Jewish sect with 100,000 people in America. The young man has a bittersweet relationship with his father, a Chassidic leader and Holocaust survivor who is confronted with the stirrings of his son whom he loves with such devotion and anxiety.