BookBrowse Reviews A Replacement Life by Boris Fishman

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A Replacement Life

by Boris Fishman

A Replacement Life
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    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Jun 2014, 336 pages
    Paperback:
    Jan 2015, 352 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Alta Ifland

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Boris Fishman's debut, A Replacement Life, is a dark-humored and powerful novel about family, honor and justice.

Boris Fishman's A Replacement Life is proof that summarizing a novel is an unjust way of describing it. The publisher's description of the novel as the story of "a failed journalist asked to do the unthinkable: forge Holocaust-restitution claims for old Russian Jews" may give the impression that the novel is about the Holocaust, when, in fact, it is a very entertaining, witty story about Russian and Soviet immigrants living in Brooklyn.

The protagonist, Slava Gelman, who, like Fishman, came to the States as a child, has one foot in the old world of his parents and grandparents, and one in the new world, which is symbolized by Century, a prestigious New York magazine where he works. Fishman's characters – Slava and his relatives, as well as their neighbors and friends – are vivid and persuasive. They also display a disregard for the law, something common to those who have ...

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