Light Fell

Light Fell Awarded TheStonewall Prize For Fiction, The First And Most Enduring Award For GLBT Books, Sponsored By The American Library Association S Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, And Transgendered Round Table Twenty Years Have Passed Since Joseph Left Behind His Entire Life His Wife Rebecca, His Five Sons, His Father, And The Religious Israeli Farming Community Where He Grew Up When He Fell In Love With A Man, The Genius Rabbi Yoel Rosenzweig Their Affair Is Long Over, But Its Echoes Continue To Reverberate Through The Lives Of Joseph, Rebecca, And Their Sons In Ways That None Of Them Could Have Predicted Now, For His Fiftieth Birthday, Joseph Is Preparing To Have His Five Sons And The Daughter In Law He Has Never Met Spend The Sabbath With Him In The Tel Aviv Penthouse That He Shares With A Man Who Is Conveniently Out Of Town That Weekend This Will Be The First Time Joseph And All His Sons Will Be Together In Nearly Two Decades The Boys Lives Have Taken Widely Varying Paths While Some Have Become Extremely Religious, Another Is Completely Cosmopolitan And Secular, And Their Feelings Toward Their Father Range From Acceptance To Bitter Resentment As They Prepare For This Reunion, Joseph, His Sons, And Even Rebecca, Must Confront What Was, What Is, And What Could Have Been Evan Fallenberg Is A Native Of Cleveland, Ohio, And Has SinceLived In Israel, Where He Is A Writer, Teacher, And Translator His Recent Translations Include Novels By Batya Gur And Meir Shalev He Is A Graduate Of The School Of Foreign Service At Georgetown University And The Vermont College MFA Program He Is The Father Of Two Sons From The Hardcover Edition

A native of Cleveland, Ohio, Fallenberg is a graduate of Georgetown University and the MFA program in creative writing at Vermont College of Fine Arts and has lived in Israel since 1985 He is coordinator of fiction for the Shaindy Rudoff Graduate Program in Creative Writing at Bar Ilan University coordinator of literary translation in the Department of English Literature at Bar Ilan University

➧ [Ebook] ➢ Light Fell By Evan Fallenberg ➲ –
  • Kindle Edition
  • 229 pages
  • Light Fell
  • Evan Fallenberg
  • English
  • 06 September 2019

10 thoughts on “Light Fell

  1. says:

    This was a very interesting book A writer friend of mine Debra Darvick met the author at a recent Jewish Book Fair, and this is what she put in her blog hear the women tell it, Joseph Licht, the protagonist in Evan Fallenberg s first novel, Light Fell, is neither sympathetic nor likable In fact, during the QA one of last night s attendees put it pretty bluntly, I didn t like any of the characters in this book Fallenberg, who is not only likable and sympathetic but was a terrific and engaging speaker not to mention cute as all hell , stepped back from the podium, took a swig of water and laughed Wow People have told me they don t like Joseph But no one s ever said they don t like anybody in my book Let me think about this for a moment Earlier in the evening I d answered a friend who had the same reaction to Joseph Perhaps Fallenberg wanted the challenge of humanizing an unlikable character Or perhaps he wanted to try on being an SOB Acknowledging the reader s antipathy, the author said he set out to take people and put them in an impossible position I wanted to create a situation you may not like him but can you sympathize with his predicament The predicament Israeli scholar Joseph Licht leaves behind his entire life wife, five young children, the religious farming community where he grew up when he falls in love and has an affair with a man, a famous rabbi no less Now that s a predicament Which, inadvertantly or not, extends to some of Fallenberg s readers who found themselves enjoying his novel while disliking the driving character.Opening the folds of his writer s cape, Fallenberg discussed the ins and outs of writing his first novel A translator by profession, he was so overwhelmed by the idea of creating a novel that when he sat down each morning 4 30 6 00 he would tell himself, Just write a scene Evan, just a scene Once the morning s scene was done, he d jot down a sentence or two of what came next, a lifeline of sorts When 4 30 am rolled around again, he had something to grasp as he made his way.Fallenberg discussed character development, which included giving one the birthday of February 22, 1922 He then visited an astrologer to learn what a person with a birthday of 2 22 22 would be like It was as if the astrologer knew my character He wrote them letters, talked to them until they became fully formed individuals, completely independent of the author I spent so much time with them, he recalled, that I could trust myself to run with them when they surprised me How often does a writer get that nuts and boltsy with an audience One reason why I live for Jewish Book Month.

  2. says:

    This is the kind of book I simply couldn t give enough stars to Evan Fallenberg is a superb writer and a man with great insight into his characters When they speak, they come alive The book tells the story of an Israeli family man, Joseph Licht, who falls in love with his male rabbi At first it looks as though it ll be a book about the struggles the two men face as homosexuals in the religious Orthodox community But there s an early twist that sets up a wonderful family drama between Joseph and his five sons, with a wonderfully nuanced role for his ex wife Plotting, character and style all score maximum points It s truly an inspiring work.

  3. says:

    Joseph Licht is turning 50, and has invited his five sons to share a celebratory weekend This will be the first time in the twenty years since he left them and their mother for brilliant young Rabbi Yoel Rosenzweig that all of them are together at one time The years have been full of pain in many ways, yet his main regret has been the loss of his sons Surprisingly they all show up, but the weekend is still full of judgment and recrimination, and forgiveness seems yet to be illusive Sad, but ultimately hopeful, this book explores the fallibility of memory, the contradictory demands of religious life and fulfilling personal life, issues which turn out to affect not only Joseph but his sons in different ways.

  4. says:

    I was prepared to hate this book because of the premise, but I could not put it down The combination of character driven fiction and aspects of Israeli culture made it a great read The only character I felt was not fully developed was Ethan, but that may also be an aspect of the family dynamics The story centers around a Sabbath meal, and I enjoyed the descriptions of the food and the preparation When they finally get together, for Joseph s 50th birthday and their first union in 20 years, I expected some level of drama But the tender way in which Joseph hopes to reconcile with his sons, without anger or blame, made this a very touching book, despite the explicit homosexualtiy.

  5. says:

    What would you do if, midway into your life, you realized that the choices that you ve made in your life were the wrong ones Would you continue acting, pretending that everything is fine while longing to live differently, or would you make a drastic change, leaving behind and cruelly disregarding the people, beliefs and community that have always defined you Although Joseph Licht s dilemma revolves around issues of homosexuality and religion, there is much in this book that will speak to anyone wrestling with the problem of how to be true to oneself, and the price paid in the wake of that choice.

  6. says:

    I read this the other day but forgot to blog about it It s about an Israeli man who left his fairly religious family for another man, and twenty years later he s about to reunite with all five of his sons for the first time in those twenty years The sons are a weird microcosm of Israeli society and the end felt pretty pat, but it was a pretty good read anyway B.

  7. says:

    There s nothing terribly wrong with this novel, but I found that a quarter of the way through the book, I was bored didn t care about the characters Life is too short

  8. says:

    Found it a little too slow moving at times.

  9. says:

    This was incredibly interesting read and one exquisite debut novel Evan Fallenberg has indeed created as the blurb say as well a uniquely drawn protagonist The book tells the story about Joseph, an educated Israeli man, professor of literature Harvard graduated, a husband and father of five who fells in love with a rabbi.Now, this novel indeed won several literary awards reserved for GLBT literature such are 2009 Stonewall Prize for Fiction or 2008 Edmund White Award for Debut Fiction besides those it was also 2008 National Jewish Book Award Finalist and somehow it is expected that the story fill follow love and struggle of those two men in highly traditional, Orthodox Jewish society especially since one of them is nothing less but rabbi and that would probably be an interesting story However Fallenberg decided to jump of the stereotypes and leave them to others His novel has erased that frontier that divides literature in this case GLBT from I don t know, hetero I guess With one quite unexpected twist, story that might have been less predictable becomes one incredibly unique reading experience I m really against those separations in literature and art generally and I believe those GLBT awards are disserving this great novel because many wouldn t even consider reading book that won some gay lit award But this is certainly NOT gay novel here I must admit I m not what gay novel suppose to mean by default Hopefully the only criteria is not to have main character homosexual This was enormously thought provoking story You re feel empathy and understanding towards one character and then the consequences of those actions would strike you and in the very next moment you ll start asking yourself What are you talking This can t be right until you realizes there is no right and wrong That s human nature, such an unpredictable burden or jewel we all have And that s what novel is all about Human nature It s not easy to comprehend that one would decide to leave his life and all those people that was part of it including their own children because they realize they aren t what they thought the were That s not right, right Well wrong But when I say that wrong I m not saying it s right I m just refuse to judge Of course there is a little bugger named responsibility but then what about responsibility to ourselves There is another bugger named consciousness but then how can you be scrupulous with others if you re betraying yourself And of course there is, usually enormous price that you have to pay whatever decision you made.Joseph left his wife and five sons but not to live happily ever after with rabbi he loved who was as well a husband and a father Truth that love was a trigger but that wasn t a reason He firmly didn t want to come back in his past life even when he had a chance in spite the price he and the ones he love had to pay and horrifying consequences he had made them to face and live with So it really is hard to understand his decision But in the end, you re not even asked to understand or approve or even be sympathetic There are no easy resolutions here by the way what I wrote is not a spoiler whatsoever I said this is very thought provoking story It was interesting to think how religion or for that matter anything else can influence ones sexuality I guess everyone knows in the puberty whether they are attracted by opposite or same sex or both Is it possible that one can convince her himself they are what they re not and even spend big part of their life thinking wrongly without being aware they re faking And if it is, what a hell of life that must be There is one character in the book that asks the very same question What if you d ignored it, just buried it What if you d prayed and repented your evil thoughts and made pacts with God to ease the burden Couldn t you just have controlled your feelings Couldn t you have lived from day to day, promising yourself that today, just like yesterday, you d be good How enormously desperately one can be if one puts all her his hopes into the power of will, faith, whatever hopes to be something s he is not.Yup, human nature is really tricky little thing that is very hard to comprehend and even harder to restrain yourself from judging it.Do read this book, it s really a good one.

  10. says:

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book as I did his later work The Parting Gift So may good reviews have been written about this book that I m not entirely sure what new to say at this point It is refreshing to read about a gay man in middle age and a gay story that focuses on the attempt at reconciliation with a family, rather than the oft told stories of young gay men being estranged from their families I hope for m ore literature like this it shows a maturing of the genre as all of us, G d willing, will mature.

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