There is a scene in “The Submission,” Amy Waldman’s new and much-discussed post-9/11 novel, where the Muslim-American architect who wins a Sept. 11 memorial competition confronts the competition’s chair, Paul Rubin, a Jewish tycoon not unlike Michael Bloomberg.
Germany was not Simon Dinnerstein’s first choice for a Fulbright grant. But he didn’t have much of a choice. It was 1970, and the Brooklyn-based artist, then 27, was barely making a living. He first applied to work with a noted Spanish painter, only listing Germany, to study the art of engraving in the birthplace of Dürer, as a back up.
If there is a holy grail for pacifists—an argument that would prove, once and for all, that war is simply never a good answer—it is the case that not fighting Hitler would have done more to stop the Holocaust than fighting him. After all, even people who call themselves pacifists today often make an exception for Hitler—him, they’d fight.
In 2007, Aura Estrada, a 30-year-old writer and wife of the novelist Francisco Goldman, died in a tragic accident body surfing off the coast of Mexico. Goldman was devastated, not only feeling somehow responsible for her death — which, to this day, Aura’s mother insists he is — but also inconsolable, entombed by the grief of a man who lost the love of his life.
Readers of literary fiction in America have coveted Latin American writers for years. Jorge Luis Borges and Roberto Bolaño are even household names here. But when was the last time you heard about a great Guatemalan author? And more specifically, one who is Jewish?
Enter David Unger, author of the dark and riveting new novel, “The Price of Escape,” which follows a Jewish refugee who flees Nazi Germany and ends up in Guatemala. The story was inspired by the strange journey Unger’s own father.