The Flood

Carol Ascher, Author Crossing Press $22.95 (191p) ISBN 978-0-89594-227-2
Ascher (Simone de Beauvoir movingly depicts the ravages of prejudice as witnessed by a nine-year-old Jewish girl in Kansas during the 1950s. Eva Hoffman, her younger sister, Sarah, and their parents, David and Leah, enjoy an upper-middle-class, cultured lifestyle until events disrupt their tranquility. Ground-breaking civil rights legislation (Brown v. the Board of Education raises the issue of mandatory school integration, a situation closely watched by the Hoffmans' black cleaning woman, Mrs. Johnson. Knowing that her parents had to flee Vienna in the '30s, Eva has a special sensitivity to racial injustice. A neighbor's emphatic refusal to adopt a black child also fuels Eva's outrage, but the catalytic incident occurs when the family of a railroad worker stays with the Hoffmans after a flood leaves them homeless. Eva and her parents soon detect the guests' bigotry, and their rising moral indignation threatens to outweigh any sympathy they feel for these refugees. The destructiveness and communicability of racism are cogently demonstrated, yet Eva's precocity strains credibility, and the novel's abrupt conclusion may leave readers dissatisfied. (April 15)
Reviewed on: 03/31/1987
Release date: 04/01/1987
Paperback - 184 pages - 978-1-880684-43-6
Paperback - 180 pages - 978-0-89594-256-2
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