A Novel of New York

by Arthur D. Kahn



Book Details

Language : English
Publication Date : 10/21/2005

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 5.5x8.5
Page Count : 381
ISBN : 9780595367870

About the Book

Brownstone, a proletarian, slice-of-life novel set during the McCarthy Era was described by a Negro journalist in a dispatch for circulation among Negro newspapers as "a novel for readers weary of sensationalism, brutality and despair. The story discloses the drama in the lives of ordinary people thrown together in a brownstone-front rooming house on Manhattan's Upper West Side. It is held together by Martha, the Negro housekeeper portrayed with dignity and rare understanding Her warmth and wisdom are decisive in several difficult situations faced by the other characters. Miguel, a garment worker and the first sympathetic Puerto Rican character ever portrayed in a novel by a white author, confronts a crisis with a hostile employer. The other characters, all white, including a clerical worker, who at 37, must decide whether to sell herself into a loveless marriage; a recent divorcee, who at 50 tries to rebuild her life; a young man who dodges the draft. With an accumulation of intensely moving detail, the author examines the loneliness in which people are driven in the large cities of America and shows that it is this isolation that impels them to unnatural choices and actions."

About the Author

When Arthur Kahn, an octogenarian retired Classics professor and author of twelve books, published his first novel at the age of 34. He had already served as a World War II Office of Strategic Services operative, and as director of nationalities during Henry Wallace?s 1948 presidential campaign, research director for the Peace Information Center chaired by W.E.B. DuBois as well as chairman of an Upper Westside tenants organization. In 1952 he ran for Congress against Franklin Roosevelt, Jr.