Majorcan Chef Converts; New Madoff Victim Fund

Plus custom Katz’s Deli sneakers, and more in the news

Daybreak: Obama Failing on Iran, Israel, Guns

But here’s Cynthia Ozick on the Belieber question

John Updike the Jew

In his Bech books, the great novelist of American WASPdom parsed the allure and otherness of Jewish writers

Susan Sontag Tells All

The newly published second volume of the great critic’s journals reveals her transformation from hedonistic revolutionary to elitist enforcer

Flower Children

Saul Bellow’s Mr. Sammler’s Planet is a document of the cravings of 1960s America, and an attempt to bring the Holocaust to bear on America

Modern Times

Herman Wouk wrote a foundational text for American postwar Modern Orthodoxy, and for the emancipated Jewish literature in its wake

Green Day

From composting and juices to photography and Cynthia Ozick, 10 inventive ways to celebrate Tu B’Shevat, the Jewish new year for trees

Field Notes

Five Books: A biography of sportscaster Howard Cosell, the life of film critic Pauline Kael, the poets who translated Shakespeare into Hebrew, and more

Pilgrim’s Progress

Creating Jewishness in a post-religious age: Leon Uris’ Exodus and S.Y. Agnon’s Only Yesterday paint Israel’s history in broad and fine strokes

Counterlife

Reading books like Franny and Zooey as a child in California made Jews seem an exotic minority. In New York, they seem like any old hegemony.

On the Bookshelf

Transfigurations: iterations of the Holocaust for Christian teens, boxing enthusiasts, bibliophiles, history buffs, and neo-Sebaldians

Jews … They Win Awards!

The National Book Critics Circle and Jewish Book Council’s fêtes

Alternate Route

A new book charts the course of America’s Hebraists, literary iconoclasts who eschewed Yiddish and the Holy Land—and regarded their new home with deep ambivalence

Ghost Puppeteer

In Compulsion, now at New York’s Public Theater, Mandy Patinkin portrays a writer whose obsession with Anne Frank drives him to the brink of madness

Paper Mate

Janis Bellow reflects on her late husband’s letter-writing habits, his feelings about his legacy, and what it was like to read over his old love letters

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