BookBrowse Reviews The UnAmericans by Molly Antopol

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The UnAmericans

Stories

By Molly Antopol

The UnAmericans
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  • Hardcover: Feb 2014,
    272 pages.
    Paperback: 6 Oct 2014,
    272 pages.

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The UnAmericans, a stunning exploration of characters shaped by the forces of history, is the debut work of fiction by Molly Antopol, a 2013 National Book Foundation "5 Under 35" Honoree.

The romantic idea of America as the great equalizing melting pot is all well and good until you realize that homogeneity comes with a hefty price tag. The characters in Molly Antopol's brilliant debut collection of stories are "Unamerican" in many ways - some are secretly members of the Communist Party, while others are grappling with the stresses of immigration, of trying to find meaning in a society that mostly only values the resolute forward march.

What's immediately apparent from the stories in The UnAmericans, spanning the late twentieth century to more contemporary times, is the reach of America's footprint. The country exerts an oversized influence - from the far reaches of Ukraine to neighborhoods in the Middle East. In "Minor Heroics," set in Israel, the brother of a wounded soldier remembers how disgruntled his brother felt by the American presence in his country: "...

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