Constantly trying to fend off attempts by her daughter to move her into assisted living, Esther Lustig, an elderly Jewish woman who lives as much in the past as in the present, finds herself lost in a world which has disappeared along with many who had inhabited it.
In spare, refreshingly unsentimental prose, Miriam Karmel has given us one of literature’s finest portraits of the last months of a woman’s life. At once sad and amusing, unpretentious and ambitious, Karmel’s fiction debut brings understanding and tremendous empathy to the character of Esther Lustig, a woman readers will recognize and embrace.
Born to parents who fled the shtetl, Esther Lustig has led a seemingly conventional life?marriage, two children, a life in suburban Chicago. Now, at the age of eighty-five, her husband is deceased, her children have families of their own, and most of her friends are gone. Even in this diminished condition, life has its moments of richness, as well as its memorable characters. Being Esther is an exploration of aging, a search for meaning, and about the need, as Esther puts it, for better roadmaps for growing old.
Constantly trying to fend off attempts by her daughter to move her into assisted living, Esther Lustig, an elderly Jewish woman, finds herself lost in a world which has disappeared along with many who had inhabited it.
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