IRVING AND ME by Syd. Hoff
Kirkus Star


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Artie Granick, bar mitzvahed in Brooklyn, beached in Florida, is the funniest fall-guy since Herman Wouk's City Boy--and an all-time fast-talker. Of his old Avenue J neighborhood, dubbed declining: ""Nuts to that. I bet somebody once said 'Soon this neighborhood will be ruined-all Jewish.'"" On self-defense: ""The trouble with me is I have no temper. Even if you call me a jerk, I'm not apt to get sore. I'm more apt to start wondering if there's some truth to your remark, because, let's face it, a lot of guys can be jerks and not know it."" And more--on baseball (""All I can do is yell""), swimming (""I'm a laud animal""), on religion (""It isn't that Mom and Dad aren't good Jews. They just don't have two sets of dishes...""); on dirty pictures, smoking, being an only child, being a Negro, being a j.d. It's not all gags and pratfalls and social consciousness--there's a standard sort of plot in which Artie and sidekick Irving earn money, chase girls, and absorb an anti-social gang into the Sunny Beach Community Center...all tied together and tagged at the end as face up and adjust. But funny--and you don't have to be Jewish....

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1967
Publisher: Harper & Row