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Monday, April 14, 2014
This is Deborah Feldman's second memoir delving into the secular
world after growing up in a strict Satmar Hasidic Jewish community in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. In her first memoir called "Unorthodox," Ms. Feldman describes in detail her dysfunctional family, lifestyle and extreme loneliness. Now, after having broken away from religious life and everything and everyone she has ever known, she finds herself living with her son in New England, writing, healing and most importantly struggling to find acceptance and love. Deborah wants her son Isaac to grow up with stability and positive self esteem but she finds it difficult to be that role model when guilt, self doubt and uncertainty follow her every move. Finding her passion in the arts and enjoying new friends and travel for the first time in her life begins the process of moving forward to discover the life she is meant to lead. Relationships are difficult and memories are becoming blurred as her obsession to walk in her grandmothers footsteps through Europe and the horrors of the Holocaust. I think Ms. Feldman is a sensitive, poetic writer and has done an enormous amount of difficult self discovery. There is no doubt to read Unorthodox first for the full effect and meaning of Exodus. This memoir is less of a page turner but its honesty and life questions give the reader much to think about.