Many of us are familiar with the saying, There’s no lock on a mouth or There’s no one as deaf as he who will not listen. Yiddish proverbs and saying are very popular. Thieves and those in love both love darkness, Things can’t be bad all the time, nor good all the time, Things may get worse before they get better, Thistle sticks to clothes and disease to the body, Three things cannot be hidden: love, coughing and poverty, Time brings wounds and heals them, To be miserly is worse than to steal, To every answer you can find a new question, To every new song one can find an old tune, To fall down you manage alone but it takes friendly hands to get up, To have money is a good thing; to have a say over the money is even better are some of the more popular ones.
Well, what has the above got to do with The Yid by Paul Goldberg? Well, actually nothing but a lot as I’m fascinated with Yiddish sayings, proverbs, phrases, and clichés. I was immediately able to connect the two, and the resulting entertainment which I derived from this well thought-out historical novel as a disorderly and motley group of people come together to plot the assassination of Stalin was absolutely worth the time. It is a fun and drama-filled story, a rollicking ride from start to finish.
The Yid by Paul Goldberg is set in the year 1953, and the place is Moscow. Stalin was making his own plans but a ragtag group were equally determined to stay a step of him, and plotted to have him assassinated. These characters are quirky but interesting. Author Paul Goldberg writes in such a style that there is never a dull moment. The novel also serves as a commentary on the period, and readers get to take an inside look on Russia during the period. While the mischievous nature of the book may not go down well with some readers, the incongruities worked fine with me as an entertaining read. I definitely recommend this book for anyone who likes a light read!