Picks and Pans Review: My America!

UPDATED 09/29/1980 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 09/29/1980 at 01:00 AM EDT

by Eliot Wagner

The big novel about a Jewish family's rise from poverty has become a publishing staple. A couple of years ago Belva Plain hit the charts with Evergreen, and Cynthia Freeman's Portraits is a recent best-seller. But they pale beside this book. In My America! Hymie Share is the son of poor immigrants early in this century. But instead of cutting cloth, he is a cheating husband, a poor provider, an indifferent father. His long-suffering wife—who works from dawn to dusk as a janitor and beautician—puts up with him, but his serious son grows up and throws Hymie out. In a big, funny book that comes alive immediately, Hymie ends up 80 years old, still chasing—and being caught by—his beloved women. (Kenan Press, $13.95)

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