Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Saturday Wife: Book Review

I am a bit late for the Jewish Carnival post, it is hosted by Marie, at  People of the Book. Sorry for posting so late, but I had emergency dental work. Then to make matters, worse the dentist made a mistake, and had to redo the work, Ouch!! I hate dentists, even more.

Saturday Wife
By Naomi Ragen

Our book club discussed this novel a few days ago. The discussion was led very well. There was alot of heated discussion over this book. If you went to my other blog at Susan's Literary Cafe, you would understand why.

The book, we found out by our book club leader is a satire. A satire, is making fun of something. Most of us were offended by this novel. We are not orthodox. But, some of the things the main character did or said was over the top, ridicoulous. We felt she was making fun of the Jewish community. 

We were trying to figure out if she was just having a good time, and not to take this so serious. But, it is hard not to do that. While reading this book. After I got over,the over the top antics of Delilah( which even her name is peculiar), just reading the book, then I just started reading it. It was a fun at times,comical read.

But, still felt like she was making fun of the Jewish community. This is the first book I read that I was actually angry at the author, and the characters she created.  I know this is suppose to be funny, but it was difficult to not take it seriously.

I know Mrs. Ragen is from the U.S., and then immigrated to Israel. She is a big, Jewish Feminist. But, if she does not agree with most of the Jewish laws, then why does she follow them.

 I don't agree, but I don't bad mouth, like she did., I just don't follow the observance of the Orthodox, instead I follow the observance where I feel confortable.

I am wondering, does she really feel this way, or did she just exaggerate a bit, and did not mean to offend anyone.

 It seems like she took every bit of Jewish law, went down the list and put a slant in the story. I did not like, the character of Delilah.  Even Delilah's name is ironic, with a name like Delilah Goldgrab, would you want her name.

She was very materialistic, and about me, me, me. Why would she marry Chaim, if she did not believe in her observance. I

At times, I can understand Rabbi's wives are under so much scrutiny, and pressure, they may think bad thoughts, but I am sure, they keep it to themselves.

One of our book club members added, she was putting the Madoff controversy in the novel(the swindler, Victor). look at the ending of the story, all the cards falling down. Interesting thought.  If any one else read this I would like to know what your thoughts are.

I am sorry, Mrs. Ragen for being so harsh. I am just hoping you don't feel this way.  That you just exaggerated the story over the top.

We did have a great discussion. These kind of books make great discussions. A few people liked the book. About half of us were offended by the book. Personally, if you are observant I would not recommend this book. I tried not to take this book seriously, but it was very hard not too.

I have read a few of Naomi Ragen's book and enjoyed them. This one was very different than her others. If you like soap opera type, with light reading, you would probably enjoy reading.

Now our next book will be very different. We will be reading in March, Dinner with Anna Karenina. Looking forward to that read...


Anonymous said...

Nice review...hope you are feeling better.

KSP said...

I am obversant, I read the book, and I enjoyed it. If you've read Madame Bovary, that is the character upon which Delilah is based. Living in a neighborhood with graduates of the college which Delilah attended, the satire is indeed biting, but rooted in truth.

Unknown said...

I just finished reading the book and tore through it over a weekend. The satire was great! I'm a man and obversant, and still feel she hit on all cylinders. Granted the sexual imagery kept me engaged. The tie-in to Madoff was clear, but was there a specific community she was refering to? or even hinting at?

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