Thursday, April 21, 2011

Snow In August by Pete Hamill

Snow in August
Author: Pete Hamill
Publisher: Grand Central
Published: 1997
Paperback: 354 pages

My Rating: 4.5 stars

Synopsis (from Set in a working-class Brooklyn neighborhood in 1947, this poignant tale revolves around two of the most endearing characters in recent fiction: an 11-year-old Irish Catholic boy named Michael Devlin and Rabbi Judah Hirsch, a refugee from Prague.

My Thoughts: This novel revolves around Michael Devlin, a boy growing up in Brooklyn in 1947. His father died in the war, so he is the man of the house. He and his mother depend on one another to remain strong. Michael meets a rabbi, Judah Hirsch, one snowy day on his way to mass, and a friendship grows between the two and Michael teaches the rabbi English and all about baseball, and the rabbi teaches Michael about Yiddish and Jewish folklore.

This is a truly magical book, one that had me crying at points over what was happening to the characters. Seeing how some prejudices existed in America after World War II truly broke my heart but left me cheering for Michael and the rabbi to come out on top. While definitely a work of fiction, I felt like I was in Brooklyn with these to men, experiencing the excitement of Jackie Robinson joining the Dodgers; listening to Bing Crosby singing on the radio; sweating in the heat of summer. Pete Hamill's writing will definitely transport you back in time and make you feel as if you are living with Michael and his mother. I truly enjoyed this book and cannot wait to read another book from Hamill in the near future.


  1. Super Fab review! I felt YOUR emotions/feelings through it. So is this book the type of book you read if you need a good cry? Or the type of book that is emotionally touching. I'm asking because I don't like to read sad books and I'm interested in this one.

  2. @Alexis - This was definitely an emotionally touching book. I wasn't expecting it to be one of those types of books, but it really did touch me. I'm with you on avoiding the sad books ... I couldn't even get past the first five pages of Marley and Me, knowing what was going to happen!