By Bernice Rubens Published by Eyre & Spottiswoode Norman is the clever one of a close-knit Jewish family in the East End of London. Infant prodigy; brilliant. Despite the often grim subject matter of her books, Bernice Rubens wrote Her best-known novel, The Elected Member, explored loneliness. The Elected Member is a Booker Prize-winning novel by Welsh writer Bernice Rubens. Plot[edit]. The novel’s main character is Norman Zweck, who is addicted .

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You can wrap a word in square brackets to make it appear bold. One of London’s minor communities, the Jewish community is studied at a very personal level and this study reveals Middleton’s mastery over the subject.


After a trip home from Australia, Ellen is keen to bring the neglected property back to its former glory and enlists the help slected her dear friend and one of Ireland’s top interior designers, Colette Barry.

Dec 09, Jessie rated it it was amazing. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. This was an interesting story about a man struggling with mental issues and his family, a Jewish family not quite integrated into American culture. When you create bernoce account with us, you’ll be able to save your favourite books, make a wishlist of upcoming titles, receive newsletters about books you’ll love, get recommendations tailored to you and order our books directly.

He spends his days in his parents’ old bedroom, locked away from his father and younger sister, popping amphetamine pills in a futile attempt to keep his demons at bay.


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The Elected Member by Bernice Rubens

You probably have to be immersed in Rabbi Zweck’s anxious wait for his doctor, Levy, to ring at his door to appreciate the hilarity of Norman’s overloud response: The descriptions of Zweck’s attempts to rid himself and his surroundings of the silverfish that he’s convinced are everywhere are vivid and painful, a testament to Rubens’ ability to get inside the head of her protagonist and show his suffering as well as his unhinged state.

Sphere Late Season Christobel Kent. But the goofy artwork belied an intense novel with surprising emotional depth.

Rubens deftly uses her humor to lay bare the sadness of this life, made sadder because Norman could not see it himself. And the only boy Norman, well Norman is brnice insane.

Two people cannot play a conspiracy for so long, and play it each on his own. How many contemporary novelists, I wonder, would kick off with a reference to the controversial anti-psychiatrist, let alone, as Bernice Rubens did, use his ideas as a springboard for an entire novel?

What is evident is that Bernice Rubens is an amazing writer and that this is a brilliantly written story of a dysfunctional family. Norman is the clever one of a close-knit Jewish family in the East End of London.

However, in spite of these elements, the story remains a gripping and easy read. Each is keeping a secret; each has been shaken by the horrors of war. It addresses so much, from insanity to faith to family pain and betrayal. Accessibility links Skip to article Skip to navigation. To read the rest of my review visit http: Two English students, Ellie and James, set off to hitch-hike across Europe with no particular aim in mind but a continent, and themselves, to discover.


The Dry by Jane Harper.

Norman Zweck is a year-old London barrister, struck down in his prime because of his addiction. Addicted to pills and seeing silverfish everywhere, Norman was once the pride of his entire community. Intwo young Americans meet in Verdun, the city in France where one of the most devastating battles of the war was waged.

Nice to hear from you. A quick read, and the troubles of Norman and his family are told in a really eloquent way. Mar 26, Lisa rated it liked it Shelves: Although we have sympathy for Norman as he experiences the horrors his mind produces, we have even more sympathy membber his family who have to deal with the effects although not for the dead mother, who does not seem to have been a positive influence. An isolated Tuscan farmhouse on the ruvens of an ancient wood is the perfect setting for a late September holiday.

For Rbbi Zweck, Norman’s father, his son’s deterioration is a bitter reminder of his own guilt and failure.

Bernice Rubens

Topics Books Books blog. Information for Authors Press Booksellers and Distributors. This is the story of a close knit Jewish family in London and how they cope with a lunatic family member.