An Almost Perfect Moment (2020)

An Almost Perfect Moment Binnie Kirshenbaum An Almost Perfect Moment On the cusp of the great age of disco and in a part of Brooklyn a million miles away from Manhattan livesfifteen year old Valentine Kessler and her long suffering mother Miriam Valentine Jewish pr
  • Title: An Almost Perfect Moment
  • Author: Binnie Kirshenbaum
  • ISBN: 9780060520861
  • Page: 166
  • Format: Hardcover
An Almost Perfect Moment Binnie Kirshenbaum On the cusp of the great age of disco, and in a part of Brooklyn a million miles away from Manhattan, livesfifteen year old Valentine Kessler and her long suffering mother, Miriam.Valentine Jewish, pretty, and a touch flaky is an unremarkable teenager except for two things she is a dead ringer for the Virgin Mary as she appeared to Bernadette at Lourdes, and her verOn the cusp of the great age of disco, and in a part of Brooklyn a million miles away from Manhattan, livesfifteen year old Valentine Kessler and her long suffering mother, Miriam.Valentine Jewish, pretty, and a touch flaky is an unremarkable teenager except for two things she is a dead ringer for the Virgin Mary as she appeared to Bernadette at Lourdes, and her very being, through some inexplicable conspiracy of fate, seems to shatter the dreams and hopes of people around her.John Wosileski, Valentine s lonely math teacher who adores her from afar, embraces the martyrdom wrought by his unconditional and unrequited love Joanne Clarke, the bitter and sad biology teacher who schemes to be John s wife, reviles Valentine to eventual self destruction Valentine s best friend, a former figure skating champion, humiliates her for the crime of being different But Miriam Kessler betrayed and anguished by the husband she once worshipped loves Valentine only the way a mother could deeply, yet without knowing Transposing one sensual appetite for another, Miriam eats and eats and seeks solace in a daily game of mah jongg with her three girlfriends The Girls, a cross between a Greek Chorus and a Brooklyn rendition of the Three Wise Men, dispense advice, predictions, and care in the form of extravagant gifts and homemade strudels When Miriam s greatest fear for Valentine is realized, she takes comfort in the thought that it couldn t get any worse But then something even stranger happens, and Valentine s mysterious presence becomes an even mysterious absence.Written in a naturalistic voice that echoes that of the characters, An Almost Perfect Moment is a dark and sharply comic novel about star crossed lovers, mothers and daughters, doctrines of the divine, and a colorful Jewish community that once defined Brooklyn Sagacious, sorrowful, and hilarious, it raises questions of faith and plays with the possibility of miracles with one eye on the caution Be careful what you wish for.
An Almost Perfect Moment Binnie Kirshenbaum

  • [E-Book] ☆ An Almost Perfect Moment | BY Å Binnie Kirshenbaum
    166 Binnie Kirshenbaum
  • thumbnail Title: [E-Book] ☆ An Almost Perfect Moment | BY Å Binnie Kirshenbaum
    Posted by:Binnie Kirshenbaum
    Published :2019-06-16T23:27:11+00:00

One thought on “An Almost Perfect Moment

  1. Heather

    I am loving this book I love the way it s written very subtle but one of those where you go back and reread sentences because you suddenly realize the impact of them Incredibly understated and so, so great EDIT Okay, so I m editing this because I was so loving this book and then the end SUUUUUUUUUUUCKED So there s that.

  2. Shauna

    Bizarre, with somewhat worrisome morals and confusing religious undertones Valentine looks just like the Virgin Mary, but she is a young Jewish girl, and she has a crush on her awkward English teacher The one part that really tickled me was when Valentine discovers that Mary and Jesus were Jewish before the advent of Christianity What a marvelous revelation for her

  3. Susanne

    I feel this book is somewhere between 3 and 4 stars, but because it was such a pleasure to read I gave it four.Although essentially sad and serious the book is written with such a beautiful and sharp sense of humour that you don t want it to end Themes of loneliness, religion, love, death and teenage pregnancy are cleverly interwoven.However the book leaves quite a few loose ends, and some of the stories seem not relevant to each other, but on the other hand, maybe that s what makes it similar t [...]

  4. Duy Tran

    This is a superbly written book it kept me reading all the way through, even though there is very thinly plotted It s not the plot, but the writer s tragic sense of humor which kept me going Each character is tragic each slightly in their own way.

  5. Tricia

    A great suprise book Sent to me by Jason s Aunt Adelaide who has great literary taste One of those rare books that just sucks you in and you feel like you acctually met these people.

  6. Anne Marie

    I couldn t put this book down It was so intriguing, yet simple, with snippets of the lives of ordinary people living day to day in Brooklyn I don t know if the author was trying to give the reader a message with this story, but I do have to admit I was not happy with the ending Overall, this story, which takes place in Brooklyn in the 1970 s, is about a Jewish high school girl, Valentine, who looks like the Virgin Mary The story is somewhat similar to a modern day take on what Mary s life could [...]

  7. David Jay

    When I heard the description of this book, I couldn t resist The main character is an odd Jewish girl growing up in the Canarsie neighborhood of Brooklyn in the 1970s I was an odd Jewish boy growing up in the same neighborhood in the 1970s and 80s Kirshenbaum s depiction of the area at that time is well done funny and nostalgia inducing and a bit kitchy Very enjoyable, and the book is very readable I couldn t put it down.But the story is quite strange And the characters, while often lots of fun, [...]

  8. Catherine

    A lot of people are mocked in this book, but most especially Catholics The omniscient pov makes it especially snarky So beware I often chuckled in the earlier parts but it began to feel mean hearted so I winced than laughed Like always, it becomes about taste If you re looking for something uplifting, probably not for you If you enjoy making fun of miserable unfortunate people, and faith, this is your book I gave it five stars because it s perfect for what it is I didn t entirely enjoy it, but [...]

  9. Katie

    Let s see, as a 40 year old Southern Baptist who knew a handful of Jewish and Catholic girls growing up, I enjoyed the banter in this book It s a coming of age book at its core, with every character experiencing some level of self discovery I laughed out loud at The Girls, and cringed with the unfortunate recollection of inexperienced fumbling around with boys and trying to figure out friendships I could ve stayed in the living room eavesdropping during mah jongg games and done without the John, [...]

  10. Mel

    This book grimly illustrated what kind of life I led before I met my husband It reminded me that some people don t find that escape from unending misery Some people lead rotten, boring, meaningless lives and sometimes do nothing to change it I feel so lucky for the life I have and the people in it I really enjoyed this book But I m a pessimist mostly, though my outlook has become a lot bright in recent years.

  11. Paula

    One of those books which you re not exactly sure why you are reading it, but you just need to know what happens, in the end Then, you get to the end and you kind of feel like it was a waste of book reading time, since there are so many other great books out there I have a rule, if you cannot get into the book, by page 50, then it s not worth reading, but I broke it, for this book and am very disappointed This is not something I would recommend to another person.

  12. Jennifer

    If you read this, tell me what you think I think I hated it, but it kept me reading right the way through So what does that mean It was supposed to make people think about religion, but not for me It made me think about how people make choicesoices the characters made, choices I ve made, choices friends and aquaintances have made The end was oddly satisfyingd I can t tell you than that or it will ruin it for you.

  13. Tricia Sutton

    This took a long time to read, almost a year Always getting set aside for another book 10 months was spent getting through the first half It picked up after that There never was any point to the book that I could detect, and the ending sucked But other than that I loved the writing, the humor and loved the omniscient POV I will read anything by Ms Kirshenbaum from here on out, including this one again now that I have fallen in love with her writing She has a new fan.

  14. Jeanne

    A Jewish girl Valentine who looks like the Virgin Mary is in love with a teacher who fantasizes about her Another teacher s in love with same teacher Valentine goes to teacher s house, they have sex, but her hymen doesn t break She gets pregnant, even though she s technically a virgin She thinks she s Mary all over again but when she gives birth to a girl, she runs away to a nunnery.

  15. bookworMyra

    Wow No book has ever made it to my Never Read list, but this one is waaaaaaaaay beyond Never Read It s like at Never Even Pick It Up And Bother.I skipped soooo many chapters after finding out that the girl gets pregnant and pulls a Mary But, in the end she bolts and leaves her kid with her mother and The Girls Unbelievably ridiculas

  16. Gato

    A story about a young Jewish girl who looks like the Virgin Mary This book contains interesting tales of heartache with carefully crafted twists and turns Great Mother Daughter struggle As the tale progresses, you can almost guess what s coming, but think, nawn t be and then it happens A Must Read This author is the best

  17. Alexis

    This is such a great book, one of my favorites in a long time The author really makes you feel like you re in that place and time and the symbolism and imagery is wonderful The characters are so sad and wonderfully developed.

  18. Jane

    Very origianl, funny and thoroughly entertaining book One of Kirshenbaum s best A mother is a teensy worried about her adolescent daughter who not only looks like, but believes she is the Virgin Mary, never mind that the family is Jewish

  19. Kristen

    This was a great read Really interesting character development that explores the lonesome ness that lurks beneath a person s unhappiness, and attempts to find happiness and solace Enjoyed the setting in disco era Brooklyn as well.

  20. Bryce

    Unpleasant and dreary Kirshenbaum tried to recreate the subtle magic realism that Jonathan Lethem captures so easily, but she falls incredibly flat Instead of fantastical and unsettling, this book just comes across as a little weird A lesson in how people ruin their own lives.

  21. Allison

    The only silver lining was the characters were consistent The writing often dragged on and on and overflowed with qualifiers I didn t like any of the characters and there were too many she tried to focus on and there was no point to the story.

  22. Anita

    I lived in Canarsie, graduated from Canarsie HS I was walking through the neighborhood with the characters and I think most of the characters were spot on I don t want to give anything away It s worth a read.

  23. Moose

    loved the jewish woman and the catholicsough some characters were depressing, the author makes you laugh at the culture very fast read that leaves you wondering

  24. C. Purtill

    I LOVED this book I can remember reading it when I was living in a tiny little apartment in Brooklyn and feeling like this was one of the best books of all time.

  25. Sharon

    I clearly remember reading this book From the exterior, it is confusing and impossible to comprehend But embedded within are true wisdom only some can see Of course, exciting plot.

  26. Shonna Froebel

    Story about Valentine, a Jewish girl who associates herself with the Virgin Mary, gets pregnant without losing her virginity, and disappears Struck by the sadness of those around her.

  27. Jennifer

    I bought this book at Wal Mart for like 3.50 and LOVED it I don t even know why I have nothing in common with the characters, but it was written in such a way that I could totally relate.

  28. Caitlin Larrabee

    Rather dark heavy book with quite a few depressing moments that seemed to be present for their own sake Interesting nonetheless.

  29. Michele

    I would have given this book 4 stars if I rated it before I read the last chapter I was disappointed with the ending.

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