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The Yiddish Policemen’s Union – Michael Chabon July 18, 2007

Posted by showmescifi in Books, Michael Chabon, Sci Fi, science fiction, sciencefiction, scifi, serentiy, Star Trek Games, star trek tng, starwars, wikipedia, Yiddish Policemens Union.


What’s a review for The Yiddish Policemen’s Union doing on ShowMeSciFi? Easy – it’s a speculative piece of literary science fiction in that it occurs in a fictional timeline that doesn’t exist.

Similiar but not nearly as dark as Philip K. Dick’s The Man In The HIgh Castle – Michael Chabon’s The Yiddish Policemen’s Union deals with a US that is different than the one we know in that the State of Israel never survives and as such a seperate temporary homeland for the Jews is carved out of a desolate place of Alaska.

This is their story on the eve of ‘reversion’ the event which will force the Jews out of Alaska as the State of Alaska retakes the land.

It’s an interesting concept and one that drew me in on the speculative – what if – side.

The actual story is another matter. Essentially it’s a murder whodunnit against the speculative history backdrop which is o.k except for the fact that Chabon does a very very very poor job of building a case against the murder. It’s as if he wrote 300 pages and realized he had to pin the crime on someone so he just threw a dart.

The lead character Meyer Landsman is the only one with any real depth the others are sad caricatures that are poorly draw. I would have given up on this book well before reading to the end were it not for Chabon’s easy style. It’s unfortunate that his plot was so utterly lacking.


1. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay « Show Me SciFi - August 28, 2007

[…] That said, this is one of the best books that i’ve read in years and certainly better than the last Chabon book i read (which was actually written latter) – The Yiddish Policeman’s Union. […]

2. Hugo Award Winners 2008 « Show Me SciFi - August 11, 2008

[…] reviewed the Best Novel of the year The Yiddish Policemen’s Union over a year ago.Though it’s a decent book it’s not […]

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