People Love Dead Jews: Reports from a Haunted Present
There are no negative reviews to be seen, no guilt trips, and no controversy about whether the book is for “us” or “them.” People Love Dead Jews, where the dead are extolled and today’s Jews still are subject to bigotry, is unequivocally outstanding. In a series of essays, angry, fierce, and even sometimes vicious, Horn contrives to weave in humor, both subtle and LOL, when the pages become too bleak.
As she describes anti-Semitism perpetrated from intolerance to massacre, she wryly tells how some victims have become respected and admired long after their passing by readers who until now were unfamiliar with the story of their lives. The book introduces the teenage Anne Frank, immortalized by her diary, hidden for years during World War II in an Amsterdam house that is now a supremely popular museum in a city with a centuries-old Jewish heritage.
Surely no chapter matches the account of Varian Fry, a young man who wasn’t Jewish but who contrived to save thousands of Jews, including the cream of European culture, from Nazi extermination.
Horn, a novelist with a young family, bitterly describes a negative past while declaring a measure of hope for a more accepting, positive future.
|W. W. Norton & Company
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