Mr. Rosenblum Dreams in English
By Natasha Solomons
Little, Brown & Co., 2010. 357 p. Fiction
There are a strict set of rules to follow if one wishes to be a true English gentleman and this is the sole desire of Mr. Rosenblum’s heart. A three member family of German Jews, the Rosenblums are fortunate enough to arrive on English soil just before WWII breaks out. Given a set of rules to follow in order to blend in with the natives, Mr. Rosenblum proceeds with exactitude and throughout the ensuing years he continues to add to the original rules with dearly naïve, comical observations.
As the years pass Mr. Rosenblum has yet to achieve the last step rule in the gentleman's rule book - entry into a golf club. But due to his "unfortunate" heritage the clubs will never accept him, so taking a proactive approach, Rosenblum decides he will simply build his own. The building of the course is full of adventure as Mr. and Mrs. Rosenblum navigate the tricky business of village life. But, just as the course reaches fruition tragedy arrives in the form of a wolf in sheep’s clothing and the “gentleman” Mr. Rosenblum believed to be his friend ends up bestowing a most crushing betrayal.
Solomons delivers a solid read with her delightfully light-hearted, endearingly bittersweet, international bestseller. With a depth that offers complete satisfaction, Solomon manages to evoke the difficulties of the Jewish experience in England and explore what it truly means to be both friend and gentleman.