Sex, skyscrapers, and Standard Yiddish by Norman Ravvin

Sex, Skyscrapers, and Standard Yiddish, a collection of short stories by Norman Ravvin, received an Emerging Artists Award from the K.M. Hunter Charitable Foundation and was warmly reviewed.

“It's not always the case that when a writer assembles stories under one cover they feel like a collection, but with Sex, Skyscrapers, and Standard Yiddish there's a strong sense of a whole rather than just parts. These are stories of the lost: lost paintings, lost fathers, lost minds, lost pasts, lost birthplaces.” – Stephen Smith, Quill & Quire

“Norman Ravvin's Sex, Skyscrapers, and Standard Yiddish – isn't that a drop-dead delicious title? – will leave readers drooling for more. [...] Most of the stories ... drip with absurdly gorgeous fictional delights ....” – Judith Fitzgerald, The Toronto Star

“Norman Ravvin's collection ... has a quirkiness and skittishness that engages and tweaks the reader. [...] These stories are brief moments of disjuncture and disruption. They present the small cataclysms that compose our days. [...] Within this tumult of words are many sharp and eccentric twists.” – Peter O'Brien, The Globe and Mail

Absurdist, funny, tragic – Norman Ravvin's short stories are exhilarating in their originality. The result of a startling alchemy, they combine old-fashioned fictional values with an off-kilter modernist technique, bringing together the dark old world of Europe and the bright new world of America.

In the title story, a Yiddish typewriter salesman and would-be writer finds unwanted inspiration in the voluptuous Lola. In “Expatriate,” a businessman wanders through Moscow in search of a painting stolen from his family during the war. And in “Doomed Cinema,” two New York agents try to buy a historic movie house and move it to an American theme park. The other stories in this remarkable collection are equally surprising and eerily delightful.

ISBN 0-9680457-1-5 / 80 pp / $12 plus $2 S/H