The Chateau: Book summary and reviews of The Chateau by Paul Goldberg

The Chateau

by Paul Goldberg

The Chateau by Paul Goldberg X
The Chateau by Paul Goldberg
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  • Published in USA  Feb 2018
    384 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

Paul Goldberg, the acclaimed author of The Yid, takes us behind the scenes of a Florida condo board election, delivering a wild spin on Miami Beach, petty crime, Jewish identity, and life in Trump's America.

"We have proverb in Florida...You know why it's good to be on beach?"
Bill smiles, but says nothing. He wants the guy to keep talking.
"Because on beach you are surrounded by idiots on only three sides."
"And on the remaining side you have what?" asks Bill.
"Sharks..."

It is January 2017 and Bill has hit rock bottom. Yesterday, he was William M. Katzenelenbogen, successful science reporter at The Washington Post. But things have taken a turn. Fired from his job, aimless, with exactly $1,219.37 in his checking account, he learns that his college roommate, a plastic surgeon known far and wide as the "Butt God of Miami Beach," has fallen to his death under salacious circumstances. With nothing to lose, Bill boards a flight for Florida's Gold Coast, ready to begin his own investigation - a last ditch attempt to revive his career.

There's just one catch: Bill's father, Melsor.

Melsor Yakovlevich Katzenelenbogen - poet, literary scholar, political dissident, small-time-crook - is angling for control of the condo board at the Château Sedan Neuve, a crumbling high-rise in Hollywood, Florida, populated mostly by Russian Jewish immigrants. The current board is filled with fraudsters levying "special assessments" on residents, and Melsor will use any means necessary to win the board election. And who better to help him than his estranged son?

As he did in The Yid, Paul Goldberg has taken something we think we know and turned it on its ear. Featuring a colorful cast of characters, The Château guarantees that you will never look at condo boards, crime, kleptocracy, vodka, Fascism, or Florida the same way again.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. Following up his acclaimed debut, The Yid, Goldberg confirms his status as one of Jewish fiction's liveliest new voices, walking in the shoes of such deadpan provocateurs as Mordecai Richler and Stanley Elkin." - Kikrus

"Filled with gags, slapstick, and snappy repartee, this satire provides sharp commentary on American society as well as an affecting story of old people with nowhere to go and no way to get there. " - Publishers Weekly

"With allusions to Gogol, "Miami Modern" architect Morris Lapidus, and his own medical journalism, impishly comedic Goldberg - peer to Tom Wolfe, Leslie Epstein, and Stanley Elkin - cannily burlesques the toxicity of human folly under Trump and Putin." - Booklist

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Paul Goldberg's debut novel The Yid was published in 2016 to widespread acclaim and named a finalist for both the Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature and the National Jewish Book Award's Goldberg Prize for Debut Fiction. As a reporter, Goldberg has written two books about the Soviet human rights movement, and has co-authored (with Otis Brawley) the book How We Do Harm, an expose of the U.S. healthcare system. He is the editor and publisher of The Cancer Letter, a publication focused on the business and politics of cancer. He lives in Washington, D.C.

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