OVERRIDE

Someone to Run With

A Novel

David Grossman; Translated by Vered Almog and Maya Gurantz

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Earnest, awkward, and painfully shy, sixteen-year-old Assaf is having the worst summer of his life. With his big sister gone to America and his best friend suddenly the most popular kid in their class, Assaf worries away his days at a lowly summer job in Jerusalem city hall and spends his evenings alone, watching television and playing games on the Internet.

One morning, Assaf's routine is interrupted by an absurd assignment: to find the owner of a stray yellow lab. Meanwhile, on the other side of the city, Tamar, a talented young singer with a lonely, tempestuous soul, undertakes an equally unpromising mission: to rescue a teenage drug addict from the Jerusalem underworld . . . and, eventually, to find her dog.

Someone to Run With is the most popular work to date from "a writer who has been, for nearly two decades, one of the most original and talented . . . anywhere" (The New York Times Book Review), a bestseller hailed by the Israeli press (and reform politicians such as Shimon Peres) for its mixture of fairy-tale magic, emotional sensitivity, and gritty realism. The novel explores the life of Israeli street kids-whom Grossman interviewed extensively for the novel-and the anxieties of family life in a society racked by self-doubt. Most of all, it evokes the adventure of adolescence and the discovery of love, as Tamar and Assaf, pushed beyond the limits of childhood by their quests, find themselves, and each other.

BOOK EXCERPTS

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Someone to Run With
IA dog runs through the streets, a boy runs after it. A long rope connects the two and gets tangled in the legs of the passersby, who grumble and gripe, and the boy mutters "Sorry, sorry" again and again. In between mumbled sorries he yells "Stop! Halt!"--and to his shame a "Whoa-ah!" escapes from his lips. And the dog keeps running.It flies on, crossing busy streets, running red lights. Its golden coat disappears before the boy's very eyes and reappears between people's legs, like a secret code. "Slower!" the boy yells, and thinks that if only he knew the dog's name, he
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REVIEWS

Praise for Someone to Run With

"Another original premise from Israeli novelist/journalist Grossman: after a shy, middle-aged man notices a beautiful stranger at a reunion, they launch a passionate affair of words."
--Library Journal

"Be My Knife, by the highly acclaimed Israeli novelist David Grossman, explores the perennial dilemma of unrequited love. Grossman, however, is far too original a novelist not to give his story a twist. The book opens with a letter written by Yair Einhorn, a neurotic, compulsive rare-books dealer, to Miriam, a beautiful, mysterious woman he glimpses 'at the class reunion a few days ago-but you didn't see me.' Her offhand gesture and brief, enigmatic smile prompts him to send her a passionate letter, what he calls a 'restrained suicide note.' To his joy and amazement, she writes back to him. So begins an extraordinary love affair by letter, recounted for the first 200 pages by Yair's impulsive, impassioned, and angst-ridden letters to Miriam. When Miriam finally finds her own voice toward the end of the book, Yair has raised the reader's expectations so high that ultimately her character is rather disappointing. Be My Knife is a novelist's novel about obsession, compulsion, and desire. The writing is dense, demanding, and full of moments of great poetry and inventiveness, but it can become difficult and obscure. Stylistically Grossman is experimenting with plot and character in the grand modernist tradition, and Yair is reminiscent of the tormented "little men" in the works of Joyce and Beckett. However, at times Grossman's brilliant artfulness overwhelms a potentially fascinating story."--Jerry Brotton, Amazon.com-editorial reviews

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • David Grossman; Translated by Vered Almog and Maya Gurantz

  • David Grossman is the author of five novels as well as two groundbreaking worls of journalism, The Yellow Wind (1987) and Sleeping on a Wire (1993), several children's books, and a play. He lives in Jerusalem.
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Someone to Run With

A Novel

David Grossman; Translated by Vered Almog and Maya Gurantz

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