Booknik on December 4–10

Last week, Booknik did his civic duty and took part in the elections; he followed his heart and went to the non/fiction book fair; he also condemned collaboration and anti-Semitism, ate chocolate in astronomic quantities, found some plagiarism in ABBA songs, and made some progress in family psychotherapy. Meanwhile, Booknik Jr. secretly fed a hedgehog, and took up photography.

White-Teethed and a Stranger
A Light Crown, by Alisa Byalskaya
Alice does not like her kindergarten chops, and she does not read The Young Pioneers Truth newspaper. She lives in downtown Moscow with her mom and dad, and she spends nights at her friends’ squats. She sleeps with a guy ten years her senior, and she never has safe sex. Booknik reviewer Masha Tuuborg tells about her impressions of the generation growing up in the shadows of the expiring USSR, and its history.

Sherlock in a Silk Skin
The House of Silk, by Anthony Horowitz
The author’s mastery has already won the praises of Western critics, and the enthusiasm of many Sherlock Holmes fans. Russian readers did not lose anything either, for the Russian edition, rather well translated by Mikhail Zagot, hit the stores practically at the same time with the American, British, and French ones. Our reviewer Lesya Bobrova cannot understand one thing though. Why Watson says, “For God’s sake!”, and in Russian, it still sounds like “Goddamn it, Holmes!”

…and many other stupefying stipulations in the Books & Reviews section.


For the Motherland, Against Stalin and the Yidobolshevism! The Story of One Collaborator and His Exposure
In April 1976, the only Jewish magazine in the Soviet Union, Sovetish Heimland, and article by the prose writer and journalist Arkady Sakhnin who also wrote for the national press, was published, with the intriguing title Who is He?. Booknik’s favorite contributor Galina Zelenina who also writes for the Lehaim magazine, attempted to answer this question, and revealed the story on one collaborator, author, and professor. This story has several acts to it, with many costumes and stage sets changes.

…and many other revealing revelations in the Articles & Interviews section.


Where the Wool Has Gone, Where Bees Appeared From, and What to Do with Ghosts, or The Most Non Fictitious Event of 2011
The non/fiction book fair is over. The massive attendance of the event can be explained by the fact that this year, Homo legens went to the fair to realize his lost right to choose. What stand should he approach? What book should he take? What room should he visit, and what speaker should he listen to? Or, should he forget it all, and go to the Literary Café to have a drink with the Booknik photographer Mila Dubrovina?

…and many other short shots in the Events & Reports section.


A Sweet, Sweet Tale
Booknik contributor Keren Pevzner has recently visited the real chocolate factory Galita in Kibbutz Degania. Now, she eats chocolate with no pleasure whatsoever for she keeps seeing hard work in every bar.

A Man, a Wife, He Teacher, and Letters Washed Away with Water
Booknik’s staff Talmud scholar Reuver Kipervasser tells that, in order to preserve the happiness of the family, it is sometimes worth to spit in teacher’s eyes.

Karl Marx Was Also a Jew. The Memoir by Vladimir Mazya, Part 1
Booknik happily publishes the next installment of our memoir project, and this time, the author is not quite a common person. Vladimir Mazya is a noted mathematician, the member of the Swedish Royal Academy, and winner of quite a number of international awards. He remembers his childhood. “I was always shy when my mom started talking in Yiddish in front of non-Jews. I was ashamed in public baths and locker rooms when everyone could see that I was circumcised. I was also ashamed of the word Jew, and my patronymic Hillelevich. I wanted to be like everyone else around me! Yet I knew that nothing would ever help me.”

A Free Hamster in a Free Country
Carnage, directed by Roman Polanski
Booknik’s contributing film critic Xenia Rozhdestvenskaya attended the premiere, and recommends everyone to go see the film. “This story is almost a locked room mystery, only the crime is committed every minute by every party involved. The characters cannot leave the apartment, no matter how they try. This is not only because the play is classicist, but because the characters are locked inside their prejudices, and they cannot reach an open space.”

...and many other premeditated premieres in the Columns & Columns section.


The Master of Distorted Mirrors, or, If You Like, the Srorrim Detrotsid Retsam
Jerusalem is the mirror city where the entire global culture is reflected. All other towns and cities are but echoes and imprints of Jerusalem. Therefore, it should not come as a surprise that the following was found by our Israeli contributor Nekod Singer in an unknown, unpublished, and, maybe, even unwritten short story by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann.

…and many other referential reflections in the Stories & Essays section.


Don’t Grudge the Brew Lite 97: Return of the Kebab
This time, Booknik’s star chef Roman Gershuni cooks birdie kebab, and merry green mashed peas. One look at this dish and you lose a couple of pounds.

Plagiarism in Soviet Songs 8: A Smorgasbord
“Let there always be sunshine, let there always be blue sky, let there always be— mamma mia!” The founder of the Swedish pop group ABBA Björn Ulvaeus shamelessly stole the melody of a soviet song, put his own lyrics to it, and had a European hit number. He never got punished for it, though. If you see the next episode of our program hosted by Mark Freydkin, you will know why.

…and many other covert operations in the Video Blog section.


The Memory Book. How to Produce a Photo Book
A photo book is a real book with a cover of your choice, printed on good paper. You create it yourselves, by selecting photographs, making collages, and adding captions. This means you will be its authors, artists, designers, and characters of this book, all in one.

Hooray! The Mystery is Solved! Short Stories by Alexander Ginevsky
In his short story Mystery and Mystery Again, the children’s writer Alexander Ginevsky describes children who decided to help a pet hedgehog, and its owner, the boy named Tolik. They brought food to them secretly, leaving it under the sofa or behind the cupboard. The author is like those kids. He secretly brings kindness and wisdom to his readers in his stories.

…and many other secret endeavors at Booknik Jr. AKA Family Booknik, our own web site for kids and their parents.


I hope they have pudding. Booknik and Family Booknik are supported by the AVI CHAI Foundation.









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