In the tradition of Like Water for Chocolate and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn , this exhilarating novel centered around a memorable immigrant family brings to vibrant life the soul and spirit of New York’s legendary Lower East Side.
Up from Orchard Street...
...where three generations of Roths live together in a crowded tenement flat at number 12. Long-widowed Manya is the family’s head and its heart: mother of dapper Jack, mother-in-law of frail and beautiful Lil, and adored bubby of Elka and Willy. She’s renowned throughout the teeming neighborhood for her mouthwatering cooking, and every noontime the front room of the flat turns into Manya’s private restaurant, where the local merchants come to savor her hearty stews and soups, succulent potato latkes and tzimmes, preserved fruits and glorious pastries.
She is just as renowned for her fierce sense of honor, her quick eye for charlatans, and her generosity to those in need. But Manya is no soft touch–except, perhaps, where her adored granddaughter Elka is concerned. It is skinny, precocious Elka who is her closest companion and confidante–and the narrator of this event-packed novel. Through Elka’s eyes we come to know the fascinating characters who come in and out of the Roths’ lives: relatives, eccentric locals, doctors, busybody neighbors–as well as the many men who try fruitlessly to win voluptuous Manya’s favors. We live through the bittersweet world of these blunt, earthy, feisty people for whom poverty was endemic, illness common, crises frequent, and zest for living intense. Money may have been short but opinions were not, and their tart tongues and lively humor invest every page. In this riveting story lies the heart of the American immigrant experience: a novel at once wise, funny, poignant, anguishing, exultant–and bursting with love.
From the Hardcover edition.
Share your thoughts on the Up from Orchard Street Body, Mind & Spirit eBook with others!
|Title of eBook: Up from Orchard Street|
|Release Date: 12-18-2007|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
|Publisher: Bantam Books|
This eBook download is available in the following formats:
|Parent title||Up from Orchard Street|
|Devices||Samsung Tablet, Apple Ipad & Iphone, Barnes & Noble Nook, Kobo eReader, Aluratek Libre, Iliad, Nokia, Blackberry, Hanlin|
|Note||ePub, short for electronic publication is one of our favorites and should be yours for a couple of reasons. ePub offers reflowable text giving you flexibility to manipulate how the content is presented. Moreover, lots of cool features are now being developed for the reader like advanced video and audio. ePub is now an industry standard, so all of the "non-propreitary" hardware manufacturers are now supporting it.|
Up from Orchard Street
My father never felt sorry for himself because he had no memory of his father; in fact, he reveled in his semiorphaned state because it had brought him closer to his mother, Manya, and to the young girls and older women who doted on him. Born Abraham Jacob, he called himself Jack after he heard the name shouted on the streets of the Lower East Side.
He emerged a precocious, mimetic child who talked English in long paragraphs, Yiddish in short ones, taught himself to read, sing, dance and make up enchanting stories without being urged. When he was four, to keep him company Manya sent for her seven-year-old sister, Bertha, born in Odessa after teenage Manya and her groom escaped to America. Everyone assumed that Bertha was Manya's daughter. She had neither the time nor the inclination to correct them. In the crowded noisy streets of New York's Jewish ghetto, no one put too fine a point on dates of birth, names or truth telling.
Manya worked like a dervish to support the two children, starting at dawn in Greenspan's bakery, where she baked bread and scrubbed heavy pots during the day, and then racing to her night job at a gaming room on Forsyth Street, where men played dice, cards, chess and checkers and drank a burning substance concocted by the owner, aptly referred to as Tyvil, or the devil.
The sign on his window read Cold Drinks, which translated into Yiddish as bronffin, prepared from rubbing alcohol, whose recipe he guarded with zeal. He possessed no license to serve alcohol but the seltzer was legitimate, splashed into glasses that could have done with more zealous washing.
Manya's white hair at the age of twen