The Book of Paradise

Itzik Manger


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Pushkin Press
28 September 2023
ISBN: 9781782279259
256 pages

From the publisher

Translated by Robert Adler Peckerar

The raucously witty Yiddish classic about a Jewish Paradise afflicted by very human temptations and pains, in a new translation

On being expelled from Paradise, young Samuel Abba pulls a crafty trick, managing to arrive on earth with his memory intact. He quickly begins regaling the humans around him with mischievous stories of a Paradise far from their expectations: a world of drunken angels, lewd patriarchs and the same divisions and temptations that shape the human world.

The Book of Paradise is a comic masterpiece, and the only novel by one of the great Yiddish writers. Written in the midst of rising anti-Semitism in 1930s Europe, its raucous blend of sacred and profane is a slyly profound reflection of the author’s turbulent times.