Call It Sleep Background

Call It Sleep Background

Call it Sleep is a fictitious novel written by Henry Roth and follows the life of a young Jewish boy who lives in the Lower East Side of New York. The novel was published in 1934 by Robert O. Ballou publishing company.

The story follows David Schearl, a Jewish immigrant, who lives his life in the slums of New York. His home life is far from perfect, with an ever-increasingly violent father but his mother, Genya, is his sanctuary. The reader follows David's journey into religion and his conflicted feelings towards it as well as the secrets he discovers along the way, in relation to his parents and life as he knew it.

The novel was commercially a success and was reviewed positively on the front page of The New York Times Book Review on October 25, 1964. TIME magazine has listed it as part of the 2005 list of 100 best English-language novels written since 1923.

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