Book Beginnings and Friday 56 – The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz (March 8)

apprenticeship of duddy kravitzMy choice of book for this week’s Friday meme combo is The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz by Mordecai Richler. I picked it up at a local thrift store today for a quarter. Goodreads has the following description:

From Mordecai Richler, one of our greatest satirists, comes one of literature’s most delightful characters, Duddy Kravitz — in a novel that belongs in the pantheon of seminal twentieth century books. Duddy — the third generation of a Jewish immigrant family in Montreal — is combative, amoral, scheming, a liar, and totally hilarious. From his street days tormenting teachers at the Jewish academy to his time hustling four jobs at once in a grand plan to “be somebody,” Duddy learns about living — and the lesson is an outrageous roller-coaster ride through the human comedy. As Richler turns his blistering commentary on love, money, and politics, The Apprenticeship Of Duddy Kravitz becomes a lesson for us all…in laughter and in life.

Now for this week’s excerpts:

book beginningsBook Beginnings is hosted by Gilion at Rose City Reader, who invites anyone to join in, saying: ‘Please join me every Friday to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires.  Please remember to include the title of the book and the author. Leave a link to your post.  If you don’t have a blog, but want to participate, please leave a comment with your Book Beginning.’

The beginning of The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz:

What with his wife so ill these past few weeks and the prospect of three more days of teaching before the weekend break, Mr. MacPherson felt unusually glum.

I like this opening, although it sounds like Mr. MacPherson has had better days.

Friday 56The Friday 56 is a book meme hosted by Freda’s Voice and the rules are as follows:

*Grab a book, any book.
*Turn to page 56.
*Find any sentence, (or few, just don’t spoil it) that grabs you.
*Post it.
*Add your (url) post below in Linky. Add the post url, not your blog url.

It’s that simple.

From page 56 of The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz:

While they were out on the ice the players’ spare sticks, kept in a rack against the wall in a gangway leading into the passages out, were guarded by a thirteen-year-old stick boy. Duddy guessed that these sticks, each with a star player’s name stencilled on it, would be treasured by many a fan. So he worked out a system.

I’m curious as to what the system is, so I might need to read this one sooner rather than later. This classic was made into a movie almost 40 years ago, but I’ve never seen it. Rather than finding the movie, though, it’ll be probably better to read the book first.


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