The Ping-Pong Wizard
Howard Jacobson is the underdog but our favorite
The Man Booker Prize will be awarded to one of six books tomorrow, and the tea leaves suggest that Tom McCarthy’s C will win. Tablet Magazine’s official nominee, however, remains Howard Jacobson’s The Finkler Question. This is the British Jewish novelist’s first appearance on the shortlist (he has made several longlists), and if he pulls off an upset tomorrow, pleaes tell your friends that the place to go for all things Jacobson is the daily magazine of Jewish life and culture you hold in your virtual hands.
Today, we have an interview with Jacobson, in which he talks about his new novel, his old novel, his country, his people’s country, and his first love—which happens to be ping-pong.
Speaking of! We’re also extremely pleased to publish, for the first time in the United States, Jacobson’s 1999 profile of American table tennis champion Marty Reisman.
As for The Finkler Question itself: Books critic Adam Kirsch sung its merits last week.
Haven’t had your fill? Listen below to hear Jacobson discuss Israel and intone its name many, many times.
Daily rate: $2
Monthly rate: $18
Yearly rate: $180
WAIT, WHY DO I HAVE TO PAY TO COMMENT?
Tablet is committed to bringing you the best, smartest, most enlightening and entertaining reporting and writing on Jewish life, all free of charge. We take pride in our community of readers, and are thrilled that you choose to engage with us in a way that is both thoughtful and thought-provoking. But the Internet, for all of its wonders, poses challenges to civilized and constructive discussion, allowing vocal—and, often, anonymous—minorities to drag it down with invective (and worse). Starting today, then, we are asking people who'd like to post comments on the site to pay a nominal fee—less a paywall than a gesture of your own commitment to the cause of great conversation. All proceeds go to helping us bring you the ambitious journalism that brought you here in the first place.
I NEED TO BE HEARD! BUT I DONT WANT TO PAY.
Readers can still interact with us free of charge via Facebook, Twitter, and our other social media channels, or write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Each week, we’ll select the best letters and publish them in a new letters to the editor feature on the Scroll.
We hope this new largely symbolic measure will help us create a more pleasant and cultivated environment for all of our readers, and, as always, we thank you deeply for your support.