Hope: A Tragedy: A Novel

Front Cover
Penguin, Jan 12, 2012 - Fiction - 368 pages
7 Reviews
A New York Times Notable Book 2012

The rural town of Stockton, New York, is famous for nothing: no one was born there, no one died there, nothing of any historical import at all has ever happened there, which is why Solomon Kugel, like other urbanites fleeing their pasts and histories, decided to move his wife and young son there.

To begin again. To start anew. But it isn’t quite working out that way for Kugel…

His ailing mother stubbornly holds on to life, and won’t stop reminiscing about the Nazi concentration camps she never actually suffered through. To complicate matters further, some lunatic is burning down farmhouses just like the one Kugel bought, and when, one night, he discovers history—a living, breathing, thought-to-be-dead specimen of history—hiding upstairs in his attic, bad quickly becomes worse.

Hope: A Tragedy is a hilarious and haunting examination of the burdens and abuse of history, propelled with unstoppable rhythm and filled with existential musings and mordant wit. It is a comic and compelling story of the hopeless longing to be free of those pasts that haunt our every present.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Stahl-Ricco - LibraryThing

This book has the absolute craziest premise - Anne Frank is alive and well and living in the attic of a man's house in Stockton, New York! And she is foul mouthed to boot! Of course he can't kick her ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Ashles - LibraryThing

Solomon Kugel is a hopeless optimist (according to his therapist) who spends a lot of time thinking of the perfect thing to say right before dying. He just moved to a small town in upstate New York ... Read full review

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About the author (2012)

Shalom Auslander was raised in Monsey, New York. Nominated for the Koret Award for writers under thirty-five, he has published articles in Esquire, The New York Times Magazine, Tablet, The New Yorker, and has had stories aired on NPR's This American Life. Auslander is the author of the short story collection Beware of God and the memoir Foreskin's Lament. He lives in New York City. To learn more about Shalom Auslander, please visit www.shalomauslander.com.

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