The Wedding Jester

The Wedding Jester

Paperback

By (author) Steve Stern

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  • Publisher: Graywolf Press,U.S.
  • Format: Paperback | 222 pages
  • Dimensions: 152mm x 228mm x 19mm | 354g
  • Publication date: 25 November 2003
  • Publication City/Country: MN
  • ISBN 10: 155597290X
  • ISBN 13: 9781555972905
  • Sales rank: 1,788,481

Product description

The "New York Times" has called Steve Stern "a prodigiously talented writer who arrives unheralded like one of the apparitions in his own stories." The "Philadelphia Inquirer" has said, "Steve Stern is an astonishing writer." Whatever the source, the critics agree that Stern offers immense delight, and outright laughs, throughout his award-winning books. "The Wedding Jester" offers a new chance to journey to Stern's magical Jewish otherworld-- where fantastical events are commonplace, and rabbis-- sometimes frequently-- take flight.

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Author information

Steve Stern is the author of several works of fiction, most recently" A Plague of Dreamers." His honors include two "New York Times" Notable Books, a Pushcart Writer's Choice Award, an O. Henry Prize, and the Edward Lewis Wallant Award for Jewish American Fiction. Stern was born in Memphis, Tennessee and now lives in Saratoga Springs, New York.

Review quote

"What good news-- more stories by Steve Stern! I am a zealous admirer of his one-of-a-kind imagination and his miraculous sentences."--Cynthia Ozick "To be a true inheritor carries with it the responsibility of expanding that tradition and keeping it vital. In "The Wedding Jester", Steve Stern does both. Only a writer with a deep reverence for and a connection with the ancient story-telling power of his rich folkloric sources could concoct the often irreverently comic twists that distinguish these genuinely marvelous-- and always vital-- stories."--Stuart Dybek

Editorial reviews

A new collection of nine stories by the highly regarded author of, most recently, A Plague of Dreamers (1994). Stem is sort of the poet laureate of Southern Jewish America, a Memphis native who has managed to transplant the sardonic magical realism of Malamud and I.B. Singer to the exotic climes of the Mississippi Delta. His latest volume is set in numerous other places as well, including the shtetls of Eastern Europe and a fading Catskills hotel-resort, but the themes that have run through his previous work dominate: the tension between religious belief and secular identity in American Jewry, sexual longing, and fear of failure in a success-obsessed culture. Stem's tone is wryly ironic throughout, even in a charming children's story, "A String Around the Moon," which serves as a gentle coda to the book. Elsewhere, most notably in the sardonic title piece, in which a none-too-successful writer of Jewish folklore finds himself performing a Borscht Belt exorcism, and "The Sin of Elijah," in which the prophet Elijah engages in some increasingly not-so-innocent voyeurism, the humor turns downright corrosive. Stem's narrators tend to be nebbishes eaten up with self-loathing (even Elijah retails a line of clever self-deprecation): men who look back on wasted lives with a longing for the unfulfilled promises of adolescence. The result, although a bit repetitive in large doses, is poignantly funny when the stories are taken one at a time. A book to sip with great pleasure, but not to imbibe at a single sitting. (Kirkus Reviews)

Back cover copy

"What good news-- more stories by Steve Stern! I am a zealous admirer of his one-of-a-kind imagination and his miraculous sentences."--Cynthia Ozick "To be a true inheritor carries with it the responsibility of expanding that tradition and keeping it vital. In "The Wedding Jester," Steve Stern does both. Only a writer with a deep reverence for and a connection with the ancient story-telling power of his rich folkloric sources could concoct the often irreverently comic twists that distinguish these genuinely marvelous-- and always vital-- stories."--Stuart Dybek The "New York Times" has called Steve Stern "a prodigiously talented writer who arrives unheralded like one of the apparitions in his own stories." The "Philadelphia Inquirer" has said, "Steve Stern is an astonishing writer." Whatever the source, the critics agree that Stern offers immense delight, and outright laughs, throughout his award-winning books. "The Wedding Jester" offers a new chance to journey to Stern's magical Jewish otherworld-- where fantastical events are commonplace, and rabbis-- sometimes frequently-- take flight. Steve Stern is the author of several works of fiction, most recently" A Plague of Dreamers." His honors include two "New York Times" Notable Books, a Pushcart Writer's Choice Award, an O. Henry Prize, and the Edward Lewis Wallant Award for Jewish American Fiction. Stern was born in Memphis, Tennessee and now lives in Saratoga Springs, New York.