Born in Detroit, Michigan, Hamburger went to college at the University of Michigan (BA 1995) and then spent a year abroad teaching English in Prague, Czech Republic, the setting for his first book of stories, primarily about the lives of expatriates after the end of the Cold War. The View from Stalin's Head was awarded the Rome Prize by the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the American Academy in Rome. His next book, Faith for Beginners, is a novel about a dysfunctional family vacation in Jerusalem, and was nominated for a Lambda Literary Award.
Hamburger's writing has appeared in The Village Voice, Out, Poets and Writers, Details, Nerve, and Time Out New York. He has won a fellowship from the Edward F. Albee Foundation and first place in the David J. Dornstein Contest for Young Jewish Writers. Currently he teaches at Columbia University and American Language Institute (New York University). He is also working on a new novel set in Berlin.
Faith for Beginners by Aaron Hamburger
Paperback: 368 pages
Publisher: Random House Trade Paperbacks (November 14, 2006)
Amazon: Faith for Beginners: A Novel
An acclaimed short-story writer has created a miraculous first novel about an American family on the verge of a breakdown–and an epiphany.
In the summer of 2000, Israel teeters between total war and total peace. Similarly on edge, Helen Michaelson, a respectable suburban housewife from Michigan, has brought her ailing husband and rebellious college-age son, Jeremy, to Jerusalem. She hopes the journey will inspire Jeremy to reconnect with his faith and find meaning in his life . . . or at least get rid of his nose ring.
It’s not that Helen is concerned about Jeremy’s sexual orientation (after all, her other son is gay as well). It’s merely the matter of the overdose (“Just like Liza!” Jeremy had told her), the green hair, and what looks like a safety pin stuck through his face. After therapy, unconditional love, and tough love . . . why not try Israel?
Yet in seductive and dangerous surroundings, with the rumbling of violence and change in the air, in a part of the world where “there are no modern times,” mother and son become new, old, and surprising versions of themselves.
Funny, erotic, searingly insightful, and profoundly moving, Faith for Beginners is a stunning debut novel from a vibrant new voice in fiction.
More Spotlights at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Lists/Gay Novels
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