Posted on November 5, 2007 by sandersny
In a profound exposé of human emotions under pressure, One Flight Up
by Rachel Schorr is a novel like few before it, daring to explore real-world interpersonal conflicts with candor and blunt honesty. Set in Israel, where day to day living is often abrasively demanding, this novel traces the emotional odyssey of a young couple, Avi and Tzippy Greenwald, who wish to enlarge their two-bedroom apartment to make life more comfortable for their eight children. According to Israeli law, the consent of all apartment owners is required before anyone undertakes any major building project. The Greenwald’s are stunned that the Brecher’s, an elderly couple whom they regard as their adopted Bubby and Zaidy, are the only ones in their building who are unalterably opposed to the renovation.
Despite great acts of kindness, alternating with cold acts of neglect, nothing changes the Brecher’s obdurate resistance to the young family’s plea for consent. The neighbors weigh in and the situation escalates into a war of words and ill-will.
The Brecher’s never disclose the reasons for their strange refusal, even during the waning months of their lives. After her husband’s death, Mrs. Brecher entrusts a diary to Tzippy Greenwald. This moving document will eventually become instrumental in changing perceptions, and will be a key to solve much that had previously appeared puzzling and incomprehensible. Subtle, absorbing, and replete with surprises, One Flight Up is more than just “a great read.” It’s a novel that delivers a story line that leaves the reader guessing until the last chapter.
Filed under: Book Reviews, New Releases, Novels