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2019-11-08 00:09:36
Malamud, Bernard
The Assistant.
New York: Farrar, Straus and Cudahy, 1957. First edition of Malamud's second novel, which went on to win the Daroff Fiction Award from the Jewish Book Council of America and the Award of the National Institute of Arts and Letters. Octavo, original half cloth. Association copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, "To Susie and Paul dear friends, greetings! Bern Corvallis, Oregon January, 1958." Near fine in a very good price-clipped dust jacket. Jacket design by Milton Glaser. Housed in a custom clamshell box. Set in a working-class neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, it explores the situation of first- and second-generation Americans in the early 1950s as experienced by three main characters and the relationships between them: an aging Jewish refugee from the Russian Empire who owns and operates a failing small grocery store, a young Italian American drifter trying to overcome a bad start in life by becoming the grocer's assistant and the grocer's daughter, who becomes romantically involved with her father's assistant despite parental objections and misgivings of her own. It was the basis for the 1998 film directed by Daniel Petrie. Time Magazine named it to its list of "All-Time 100 Novels."
Bookseller: Raptis Rare Books [US]
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