Tag Archive for non-fiction

The Forgotten ‘Fusgeyers’ from Romania

Curious about your Jewish ancestors from Romania? Read Jill Culiner’s ‘Finding Home: In the Footsteps of the Jewish Fusgeyers’ Between about 1900 and 1914, multitudes of impoverished Jewish refugees sold their meagre possessions, joined into large groups for protection, and trekked hundreds of miles out of Romania on foot. The exodus of the Jewish “Fusgeyers” — Yiddish…

My Grandfather’s Gallery: A Family Memoir of Art and War

  REVIEW: My Grandfather’s Gallery: A Family Memoir of Art and War, by Anne Sinclair (Farrar Strauss & Giroux) Born in New York in 1948, the prominent French-Jewish journalist Anne Sinclair says that while the heroic stories of her paternal grandparents, who had stayed in France during wartime, had always resonated deeply within her, she…

Mount Sinai Hospital had humble beginnings

When Dr. Daniel Drucker of Toronto’s Mount Sinai Hospital receives the US$150,000 Manpei-Suzuki prize for groundbreaking diabetes research this February (2015), he will be only the latest in a long parade of medical researchers at the world-famous institution to be recognized for their excellence. A researcher engaged in a different sort of quest — probing…

Profile: Margie Wolfe of Second Story Press

Born in Germany to Holocaust-survivor parents after World War Two, Toronto publisher Margie Wolfe has for many years been engaged in the pivotal task of exporting published Holocaust books to some 50 countries around the globe, both in their original English and translated into about 40 languages. Holocaust books for young readers are a main…

The oldest family tree in the world

From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, October 24, 2004 You may not find Dr. Neil Rosenstein’s new book listed on national best-seller lists, but the noted genealogist — with his tongue halfway in his cheek — compares it to the popular thriller “The Da Vinci Code.” Both books, the noted American genealogist and surgeon said, deal in…

Review of ‘Toronto: Biography of A City’ (Allan Levine)

Ambitious in scope and masterful in execution, Allan Levine’s panoramic portrait of our city from its beginnings to the present is sweeping and opinionated, judicious and clever, insightful and gossipy all at once. This is no dry academic survey but a lively, popular-style “biography” in the mode of Peter Ackroyd’s London (2000) and other recent…

Review: Alison Pick’s Between Gods

Seven years ago, as Toronto author Alison Pick began researching and writing what would become her prize-winning novel Far to Go, she realized that the seeds of two different projects — one a fictional manuscript, the other a closely allied memoir — were struggling for dominance within her mind. Giving priority to the novel, she…

“HE WAS THE CZAR’S GUEST”

Herman Kempinski was evidently a first cousin once removed to my great-great-grandfather, Rafael Glicenstein, and both came from the town of Konin, Poland. Herman, born about 1854, was one of the many thousands of Russian-Polish Jews to emigrate to the United States in the late 1800s: he left Konin at age 17 in 1872. He…