One thought on “הדבר היה ככה”

  1. I'm not Jewish.I know next to nothing about Jewish culture, religion or, indeed, the geography of Israel.None of that matters, this book was a joy. Funny and touching, it glitters and sparkles with the love of life and the dancing reflections of familial relations. It's particularly well-written, too; every so often a fragment of prose fairly bursts from the text, demanding and capturing the reader's attention with a particulary resplendent turn of phrase, replete with beauty and meaning."Althou [...]

  2. I enjoyed 'My Russian Grandmother and Her American Vacuum Clear' a great deal. It does tend to meander a little. Sometimes the meandering just enriches the main story; sometimes I think it is actually material for a different book. Meir Shalev's grandmother is the star of this book. Grandmother Tonya was a "character". She was born in Russia and immigrated to Palestine. The author has told of Tonya’s character, goals, likes and dislikes through many humorous stories, most of which are in some [...]

  3. This is a charming and fun book, though it felt a bit too long at times. We get to know Shalev's family, not only the titular grandmother, Tonia. As the story meandered along on it's good-humored way, it became clear that Shalev, the "writer" in the family, is just one in a long line of story-tellers, in every sense of the word. The family lived on and got through the best and worst of times through storytelling. If stories were "embroidered" and everyone's version of an event was different and [...]

  4. Nothing earthshattering, but cute and charming and engaging. In this memoir of his grandmother's fanatical housekeeping, Shalev gives you a sense of the people, the place, and the time. And there was one scene which I found absolutely hysterical. Incidentally, my husband liked this a lot more than I did which is pretty unusual. So you may want to give it a try despite my lukewarm recommendation. I suspect, though, that a sentimental interest in the time period and its people is helpful.

  5. “My Russian Grandmother and Her American Vacuum Cleaner” by Meir Shalev, tells the story of his obsessive-compulsive grandmother Tonia, life in Israel, and growing up in a household so encompassed with cleaning that bathrooms are not used (Tonia prefers everyone to do their business outside) and cleaning products like a vacuum cleaner are locked up for fear of dirt contamination. Visitors are told to come to the house from the back, rather than the front door. And Meir’s mother and her sis [...]

  6. Shalev, author of A Pigeon And A Boy, writes with humor and love about growing up in Israel as a part of a family of Russian emigrants. His grandmother came to Israel in 1923, married and raised a family, constantly struggling to keep her house clean in the dusty Jezreel Valley. When Grandma Tonia's brother-in-law sent her a vacuum cleaner from America, she used it only once, and hidden away to keep it from getting dirty, the vacuum cleaner became almost mythological to Shalev as he grew up. Thi [...]

  7. I expected this book to be a somewhat lighthearted remembrance of a grandmother and her adjustment problems to the advent of modern technology. Instead this book told the story of a dirt obsessed woman who would not let people use the bathroom or other rooms in her house because they would dirty them. Literally people had to shower outside and wash in a trough. She wouldn't use her vacuum cleaner once she realized that the dirt went inside and, by her lights, would therefor have to be totally di [...]

  8. Meir Shalev is a fabulous writer and in this very funny and endearing memoir, he tells the story of his obsessively clean grandmother, Tonia, in relation to an American GE vacuum cleaner sent to her by her double traitor brother living in California.It is the story of Shalev's youth, of life on a moshav in Israel, of the idiosyncrasies of elders transplanted from the old country (in this case Russia) and the effect on modern conveniences on everyday life. The author has a hilarious way of tellin [...]

  9. This delightfully funny family memoir tells many versions of family stories about the author's unusual dirt-phobic grandmother and her shiny American vacuum cleaner sent her by a relative which she wrapped up and enshrined in an unused bathroom--because it got dirty during use and she couldn't abide anything dirty in her house. Along the way, the book also explores family dynamics, the incredible binding power of family story/myth, and the variable nature of family memory. Every bit as original [...]

  10. Jaaj tieto jidiš zalezitosti ja mozem. Autorova rodina je teda vykvet. Velmi rada citam o zivote a zvykoch zidov. Autor ma unikatny styl, ktory sa mi paci. V knihe resp. v autorom zivote sa vyskytuju svojrazne a komicke osoby. Pri citani knihy som si zivo vedela predstavit jeho rusku babku a pri citani som sa neraz pristihla pri tom ako obraciam ocami :-D Niekedy som mala pocit, ze sa to ani nemuselo udiat v Palestine ale hocikde tu u nas :-) Mila oddychovka, odporucam ked chcete trosku odlahci [...]

  11. What a delightful book full of wonderful family stories of the Shalev family. The writer obviously draws a lot of inspiration from his own experiences as I recognised themes and events that appear in his books that I have read. I now look forward to reading the ones that I haven’t had the pleasure of reading yet.

  12. Lovely, lovely translation where the biblical references shine through. Funny memoir of a founding family in Israel, pathos and humor, and a charming end. Will definitely be racing to read more of Shalev, which I haven't, and to buy the book to have at the home library.

  13. Overtuigend over je eigen familie schrijven. Het blijft moeilijk, zelfs voor de grootste schrijvers. Dit is de eerste Shalev die ik niet zo goed vind. Ik maak het me makkelijk en kopieer de mening die een vorige lezer in het boek neerschreef: “Zoveel zwakker dan zijn schitterende meesterwerken (De kus van Esau, De vier maaltijden, Russische roman). Een tussendoor kroniek, onderhoudende en knappe vertelling, maar niets meer. Wie dit boek als eerste boek van Shalev leest, zal misschien nooit nog [...]

  14. 19 year old Tonya arrived in Palestine in the early 1920s and declared war. No, not on the enemies of Zion, although she's not fond of them either. Tonya declared war on dirt. Fresh from the shtetl, Tonya meets and marries one of two brothers. Her choice is a scholar, a man not made for the backbreaking labor that a farm commune in Palestine requires. Had he gone to America, like his brother, perhaps he too would have been a wealthy man and Tonya a woman of leisure. But that's not who she picked [...]

  15. Do you have any relatives? Then you'll love this entirely remarkable book. Meir Shalev's grandmother Tonia may be a Ukrainian by birth, and a member of a small agricultural settlement in Israel by marriage and fate, and she may be crazier than any of your kin, but you'll be amused, touched and moved by her. Everyone needs an enemy, Shalev tells us, and Tonia's was dirt. She drove herself and everyone around her to keep her house clean. Surrounded by fields and roads that were, in turn, muddy and [...]

  16. «Un álbum de recuerdos familiares nada convencional y muy divertido.»Kirkus Reviews«Una historia de amor sin oscuridad.»Haaretz«Mientras leía estas páginas, yo también me convertí en el nieto de Tonia.»Erri De Luca«La encantadora y divertida historia de la abuela de Meir Shalev, su obsesión con la limpieza y su complicada relación con su aspiradora americana.»Die Welt«Es un libro para todo el mundo. Una lectura rápida y atractiva pero significativa, que te deja un sentimiento c [...]

  17. Ik moest er even inkomen, maar daarna vond ik het een leuk boek. Dit waargebeurde verhaal gaat over oma Tonja en de stofzuiger die ze krijgt van haar zwager in Amerika. Helaas gaat oma Tonja anders om met deze "svieperrr"(op z'n Russisch uitgesproken)dan je normaal doet met een dergelijk apparaat.Meir Shalev beschrijft in zijn humoristische, maar ook vaak ontroerende stijl de gebeurtenissen. "Het zat zo".

  18. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, in which Meir Shalev writes about his family and their roots in Nahalal, Israel's first moshav. The Jezreel valley setting and the characters were familiar, as Shalev has set some of his fictional works here. This time the story is a memoir, using his family for the cast and his unique grandmother, and her vacuum cleaner, as the stars. I enjoyed the mixture of family lore with history, and the delightful anthropomorphisms that Shalev uses.

  19. I started out liking the book but midway it began to annoy me. I wondered how an entire book could be sustained concerning a vacuum cleaner and an overly obsessive woman's view concerning dirt. The book was translated and there are several problems with the wording in many cases. Also, too many similes.

  20. קורות משפחתו של מאיר שלו. סבתא טוניה וסבא אהרון. וגם הסוויפר שלה - שואב אבק שנשלח מארהב כנקמה ומוצא את עצמו כלוא 40 שנה בחדר האמבטיה . אנקדוטות מחיי המשפחה שכולן סובבות את טוניה מנהגיה, אמירותיה ומחלת הניקיון שלה. הקטע הטוב ביותר בספר הוא המפגש של סבתא טוניה עם אבגייל ונסיונה של [...]

  21. Meir Shalev describes how his family moved to and settled in Israel. His is a family of story tellers where they accuracy has never been the point. There are a lot of amusing incidents and quirky family members, but for me it didn't really gel as a whole.

  22. Ik ben helemaal in de Shalev-mood en dan is dit een heerlijk boek; deels autobiografisch en daardoor nieuwe herkenningspunten in de eerder gelezen romans. Tikkie langdradig af en toe.

  23. אני אוהב את שלו, אבל ציפיתי לאכזבה. הופתעה הציפייה ולטובה. הסכנה של סופר שמתמכר לזכרונותיו ועל כן נוטש את דרכו, לא הייתה ולא נבראה. נהנתי, צחקתי, חשבתי. היה מצויין.

  24. This book is a total delight.Meir Shalev offers great storytelling in the Jewish tradition about the early years of Palestinian pioneers and his particular family in a particular village of Nahalal. At the center of it all is much-loved Grandma Tonia, from Russian Ukraine in 1923 and her constant obsession with cleaning in a dusty and mud ridden Israeli farming village. Small in stature, she is mighty in authority and influence and establishes ground rules never to be breached. She does struggle [...]

  25. C'est le premier roman israélien que j'ai lu et sans doute un de ceux que j'ai le plus recommandé et offert. Grand-mère Tonia est époustouflante et coiffe au poteau tous les obsédés du ménage que vous pourriez connaître. Le roman est passionnant sur de nombreux aspect et plus particulièrement sur l'histoire d'une famille en Palestine mandataire puis en Israël, des années 1930 aux années 1970.La traduction de Sylvie Cohen est un peu trop réécrite à mon goût, mais l'esprit farceur [...]

  26. Every time I read this book I fight the urge to compulsively clean every corner of my house. Now, it has been a while since I read it, but it is utterly hilarious! It’s simply the story of a feisty, fiery Russian grandmother who is obsessed with eradicating all dirt from her surroundings. She has her systems to get this done- for instance, she carries a towel over her shoulder at all times so she can polish door knobs as she passes, and the floor must be washed and rinsed in numerous waters. T [...]

  27. L’écriture est légère et souvent drôle mais le livre m’est tombé des mains. Peut-être en raison du côté décousu du livre. L’obsession du personnage de la grand-mère pour la propreté (qui m’est complètement étrangère), incongrue dans le contexte des pionniers israéliens, n’a pas suffi à me tenir en haleine. J’ai fini par l’oublier sur ma table de chevet.

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