Falmouth Jewish Congregation Hosts Novelist Jenna Blum

Falmouth Jewish Congregation welcomes the public to an author talk on Thursday, December 13 at 1 PM with acclaimed New York Times bestseller novelist Jenna Blum. This event, which includes a book sale and signing handled by Eight Cousins Bookstore, is part of Falmouth Jewish Congregation’s participation in the Jewish Book Council’s Author Network, which brings authors to communities for talks and book signings. Read reviews, discussion guides, and interviews at www.jewishbookcouncil.org.

Admission is free and the event is open to the public. Light refreshments will be served. Facilities are accessible to all and everyone is welcome.

In her most recent novel, The Lost Family, Jenna Blum, the New York Times bestselling author of Those Who Save Us, creates a vivid portrait of marriage, family, and the haunting grief of World War II in an emotionally charged, beautifully rendered story that spans a generation, from the 1960s to the 1980s. Set in 1965 Manhattan, Blum’s story describes patrons flocking to Masha’s to savor its brisket bourguignon and impeccable service and to admire its dashing owner and head chef Peter Rashkin. With his movie-star good looks and tragic past, Peter, a survivor of Auschwitz, is the most eligible bachelor in town. But Peter does not care for the parade of eligible women who come to the restaurant hoping to catch his eye. He has resigned himself to a solitary life. Running Masha’s consumes him, as does his terrible guilt over surviving the horrors of the Nazi death camp while his wife, Masha—the restaurant’s namesake—and two young daughters perished.

Then exquisitely beautiful June Bouquet, an up-and-coming young model, appears at the restaurant, piercing Peter’s guard. Though she is twenty years his junior, the two begin a passionate, whirlwind courtship. When June unexpectedly becomes pregnant, Peter proposes, believing that beginning a new family with the woman he loves will allow him to let go of the horror of the past. Still, over the next twenty years, the indelible sadness of those memories will overshadow Peter, June, and their daughter Elsbeth, transforming them in shocking, heartbreaking, and
unexpected ways.

Featuring a husband devastated by grief he cannot voice, a frustrated wife competing with a ghost she cannot banish, a daughter sensitive to the pain of her family, and another lost before she was born, The Lost Family is a charming, funny, elegantly bittersweet study of loss and love.

Jenna Blum is one of Oprah’s Top Thirty Women Writers. Her first novel, Those Who Save Us, won the Ribalow Prize, award by Hadassah Magazine and adjudged by Elie Wiesel. For five years Blum interviewd Holocaust survivors for the Steven Spielberg Survivors of the Shoah Foundation. Although Boston-based, where she teaches fiction workshops at Grub Street Writers, she travels nationally and internationally to speak about her writing.

This event will take place at Falmouth Jewish Congregation’s Blanche and Joel D. Seifer Community Center at 7 Hatchville Road in East Falmouth. Reservations are not required. Falmouth Jewish Congregation is an inclusive, egalitarian Reform congregation serving the Upper Cape and beyond, is accessible and welcoming to all. For further information, visit the website at www.falmouthjewish.org, FJC’s Facebook page, or call 508-540-0602.

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