Son of a Smaller Hero
Publication Date: November 1, 1989
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Young Noah Adler, passionate, ruthlessly idealistic, is the prodigal son of Montreal’s Jewish ghetto. Finding tradition in league with self-delusion, he attempts to shatter the ghetto’s illusory walls by entering the foreign territory of the goyim. But here, freedom and self-determination continue to elude him. Eventually, Noah comes to recognize “justice and safety and a kind of felicity” in a world he cannot – entirely – leave behind. Richler’s superb account of Noah’s struggle to scale the walls of the ghetto overflows with rich comic satire. Son of a Smaller Hero is a compassionate, penetrating account of the nature of belonging, told with the savage realism for which Mordecai Richler’s fiction is celebrated.
Mordecai Richler was born in Montreal in 1931. The author of ten successful novels, numerous screenplays, and several books of non-fiction, his novel, Barney's Version, was an acclaimed bestseller and the winner of The Giller Prize, the Stephen Leacock Award for Humour, the QSpell Award, and the Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best Novel in the Caribbean and Canada region. Richler also won two Governor General’s Awards and was shortlisted twice for the Booker Prize.
Mordecai Richler died in Montreal in July 2001.
“Mordecai Richler has proven beyond all doubt that he ranks with
this century’s best novelists.”
“Richler possesses a powerful and fecund imagination. . . .”
“He is a gifted stylist, with a great ear for parody and comic dialogue…”
–New York Times Book Review
“Richler is a comic writer who sprays his personality on his fiction like a tomcat.”
–The Times (U.K.)