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Phoning Home

Phoning Home Phoning Home is a collection of entertaining and thought provoking essays featuring the author s quirky family his Jewish heritage and his New York City upbringing Jacob M Appel s recollections and

  • Title: Phoning Home
  • Author: Jacob M. Appel
  • ISBN: 9781611173710
  • Page: 345
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Phoning Home is a collection of entertaining and thought provoking essays featuring the author s quirky family, his Jewish heritage, and his New York City upbringing Jacob M Appel s recollections and insights, informed and filtered by his advanced degrees in medicine, law, and ethics, not only inspire nostalgic feelings but also offer insight into contemporary medical anPhoning Home is a collection of entertaining and thought provoking essays featuring the author s quirky family, his Jewish heritage, and his New York City upbringing Jacob M Appel s recollections and insights, informed and filtered by his advanced degrees in medicine, law, and ethics, not only inspire nostalgic feelings but also offer insight into contemporary medical and ethical issues At times sardonic and at others self deprecating, Appel lays bare the most private aspects of his emotional life We d just visited my grandaunt in Miami Beach, the last time we would ever see her I had my two travel companions, Fat and Thin, securely buckled into the backseat of my mother s foul tempered Dodge Dart, writes Appel of his family vacation with his two favorite rubber cat toys Shortly thereafter Fat and Thin were lost forever beginning, when Appel was just six years old, what he calls his private apocalypse Both erudite and full hearted, Appel recounts storylines ranging from a bout of unrequited love gone awry to the poignant romance of his grandparents We learn of the crank phone calls he made to his own family, the conspicuous absence of Jell O at his grandaunt s house, and family secrets long believed buried The stories capture the author s distinctive voice a blend of a physician s compassion and an ethicist s constant questioning.

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    1 thought on “Phoning Home

    1. "Question everything. Learn something. Answer nothing."~ EuripidesThis is a superb collection of essays by Jacob Appel, physician, attorney, bioethicist, Huff-Po commentator and, some might say, over-achiever.Appel writes beautifully on everything from childhood obsessions to unrequited love to medical ethics. The first several essays are about the author's family, particularly his grandparents. There are complete stories of life and death, yearning, love and loss contained in a few pages. These [...]

    2. 5++++++ STARS!!! The most fascinating -thought-provoking-emotionally heartwarming exciting --critical thinking -(relevant themes - life and death issues), small book of essasy's I've ever read!!!!! less than 200 pages! Jacob M. Appel is an extraordinary author! He is also a Physician! He's an attorney! He's a Bioethicist! He has taught literature classes at Brown University. He has taught ethic classes.He writes about the nexus of law and medicine, contributing to many publications including th [...]

    3. Fabulous collection of essays that balances humor and difficult topics beautifully. The essays are filled with insight and stick with you long after you've read them. I actually struggled to *not* read the book so quickly, so that I would have time to savor the thoughts of each essay, but I enjoyed it so much that I couldn't put the book down. The organization of the essays loosely follows the author's life, starting with a simpler time, when crank calls and lost toys were the basis for his bigg [...]

    4. (Reprinted from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography [cclapcenter]. I am the original author of this essay, as well as the owner of CCLaP; it is not being reprinted illegally.)Jacob M. Appel's Phoning Home is the type of essay collection I really love, which made it a welcome sight when arriving in my mailbox earlier this year. A doctor, lawyer, and ethics professor based out of New York, as well as a veteran fiction writer (both of novels and short stories) and a regular contributo [...]

    5. Excellent!!! This is the second book I have read by Jacob Appel and I will be reading ALL of his books because his writing is addictive.

    6. Nomadic SA Chick's Book ReviewsSummaryFilled with personal essays, Appel shares stories of his off-beat family, his heritage, and educational experiences. ReviewI received a free copy of this book for an honest review. I really loved the idea of this book, especially being someone that has moved nearly 5,000 miles away from family, I felt a little connection to the premise. In theory I enjoyed the book, but in reality I was bored. It was like sitting next to a stranger on a tram, and having them [...]

    7. Reading a book of personal essays by an author you've never read before is a bit like going on a first (maybe blind) date. The book (date) is presenting the best version of himself, which may (actually, should) include some witty self-deprecation and admittance of embarrassing but not horrifying admissions. He's telling his best stories, which are all brand new to you, you're both open-minded and optimistic, and in general giving it your best.Phoning Home, for me, was probably the best - if not, [...]

    8. `When one includes the possibility of posthumous influence, no human being ever reaches his or her half-life.'Once reading one of the Appel novels/books an addiction occurs. That Jacob M Appel is such an extraordinarily fine writer, certainly among the top rung of serious authors in America at present, seems foremost in a resume of his achievements - this coming of course from an admitted devotee of his books such as THE BIOLOGY OF LUCK and SCOUTING FOR THE REAPER - until the extent of his life' [...]

    9. This was an excellent collection of essays - smart, witty, thought provoking and relevant. I would read one, thoroughly enjoy it, and then read the next one and enjoy it even more. The essays dealing with bioethics and medicine were especially heart breaking and provocative, and Appel is not afraid to ask those questions that are scary and somewhat taboo in everyday society - is it better for an elderly person to spend the last days of their life locked up in a nursing home for fear of breaking [...]

    10. This is exactly the type of book my college writing professor would have had us read for class. It's a collection of interesting, well constructed essays drawing on the life experiences of the author and his close relatives. I found many of the essays quite humorous and at least mildly educational, but furthermore, they've made me interested in seeking out more work by Mr. Appel. I would recommend this book to anyone that likes non-fiction for sure, and college writing professors may want to giv [...]

    11. Phoning Home runs the gamut of situations that can occur in anyone's family. To know that others have the same things happening in their family is heartwarming and sometimes funny. I felt as though I were having a personal conversation with Jacob Appel. Thank-you to First Reads for a copy of this book. I enjoy all of Jacob Appel's books, and look forward to reading each new one that he writes.

    12. When read together, each of the thirteen pieces in Jacob Appel’s Phoning Home build upon the next, resulting in a multifaceted glimpse into the mind of Appel as he explores the ways in which identity can be consumed by illness and eroded by modern society’s response to approaching death. He is uniquely qualified to tackle these questions as he is both a physician and a bioethicist. Each essay is crafted to invite the reader into the author’s mind. The title essay introduces us to seven yea [...]

    13. On Phoning HomeThis one, I received for a review. And a review it shall get. To go a bit off-tangent, I usually judge books by their covers. It’s bad but it happens. This little one (it’s a cute little book) has a cute pastel cover that I liked since I opened it, thus moving up my TBR list. I know it’s shallow, I know it’s bad but that is how it works in my world.If you are unaware, this is a collection of non-fiction essays from Jacob M. Appel’s life. I have always wanted to read some [...]

    14. *I won a copy of this book though First Reads in exchange for an honest review.*Initial Review: Appel is an excellent writer. Less talented authors, of which there are many, should take lessons. And, yet, I couldn't finish this book. I found the content of his first few essays to be dull. I easily put the book down, and I hardly looked forward to picking it back up. However, because I did appreciate his writing style, I'll be adding one of Appel's novels to my To Read list.Update: For several r [...]

    15. "Lime Jello, as served up in my grandaunt's kitchen, was a weapon of torture" is a sentence that pretty much sums up the American experience of every child growing up in the 60's and 70's. Its a genius of a sentence if you want to understand the America during this time. In fact, I am of the opinion that Lime Jello should somehow be incorporated into espionage tactics when questioning whether a person was born here or merely sent to spy. Having studied bioethics, what surprised me most about the [...]

    16. Thought-provoking A wonderfully written collection of essays about life, death and everything in between. Mr Appel writes with a scholarly voice, but never talks down to his readers, as he takes on a journey through his life and career, unrequited love, obsessions, and medical ethics. It made me laugh out loud in places, and educated me in others, but never bored me, or made me feel stupid.Among the topics, 'Our Incredible Shrinking Discourse' is a very good luck at the impatience and lack of ci [...]

    17. Put on your thinking cap to read this book. Everyone has family secrets. A very awesome book cover, great font & writing style. 13 different very well written delightful Jewish family historical stories (essays; book). It was very easy to read/follow from start/finish & never a dull moment. No grammar errors, repetitive or out of line sequence sentences. Lots of exciting scenarios, with several twists/turns & a great set of unique characters to keep track of. A very easy rating of 5 [...]

    18. I am now and forever, I think, a fan of Jacob Appel. I absolutely loved this collection of short essays. They are written with feeling and familiarity - personal experiences. It is easy for the reader to identify with many of the situations detailed. It was easy to feel close to those individuals who struggled and to the few who seemed to defy others expectations. I highly recommend this collection of essays to those who have any desire to feel happy, sad or simply want an occasional laugh (some [...]

    19. I don't read a lot of essays because so many of them, in my opinion, miss the mark. They're too narrow, often, and maybe tell a funny/sad story that happened in the author's life. A really good essay, though, one that takes that story and expands it, is a real joy. And that's what I found in this collection. Highly recommended. My review is here: Review of Phoning Home by Jacob M. Appel

    20. Jacob Appel is an interesting character, at least as he comes across in this book of essays. Honest and forthright with his (often unconventional)thoughts and opinions, Appel's voice is captivating. So is his subject matter. Pieces in this book can generally be divided into two topics: 1) How much do we really know about the people closest to us? and 2) Death - and when and where it ought to happen.Each essay was thought-provoking and poignant.

    21. I won this book on and have to say that I am the better for it. Phoning Home may be small but it packs a wonderful punch. It's comprised of 13 essays that will have you thinking and wanting more and more. It's one of those books that even after you finish it you will want to pick it up and read it again and again. Great job Mr. Appel! I look forward to more of you work in the future.

    22. Review to come for now: Amazing, genuine, heartfelt. I've read it half a dozen times since receiving it, and I keep changing my mind about which bit is my favorite. Each story is honest and hits honest emotion. Well-written, grammatically and otherwise. Beautifully sewn together. Overall, it makes me wish for a cuppa with the author.

    23. It was such a great book. Beautifully and well written and very entertaining. highly recommend it. I look forward to reading more of his booksI won this book through first reads giveaway.

    24. Dealing with subjects from childhood to senility and much of what falls between, Jacob Appel's witty and passionate essays are a thought-provoking and enjoyable read.I received a free copy of this book through the First Reads program.

    25. Originally reviewed in The Provo Canyon Review: theprovocanyonreview/larryWhy do we read? In first grade, Mrs. Sudweeks taught me how to read with: Run Dick, Run Jane, see Jane stop, see Dick stop, see Dick and Jane pet Spot. Actions converted to words. Interactions between living beings and other stuff, the big stew of life, that’s my primary reason for reading: For the physics of it. And the joy.Jacob Appel’s collection of essays, titled “Phoning Home,” provides a shortcut for the stud [...]

    26. “Phoning Home: Essays” by Jacob M. Appel, a Review by Jennifer BensonI received this as a GoodReads Giveaway.“Phoning Home: Essays” by Jacob M. Appel is a collection of 13 thought provoking personal essays from the author’s life. His multiple careers of attorney, physician, bioethicist and award winning writer combine marvelously in these intimate tales of his life. He weaves family history and lore with humor and deeply philosophical questions that are sometimes difficult to answer, y [...]

    27. Phoning Home Essays by Jacob M. AppelPhoning Home is composed of thirteen essays that range on various topics and are related to Mr. Appel's life. They start with mundane topics and progress to the philosophical and ethical themes of our times.In "Phoning Home," we learn that when Mr. Appel was seven years old, and after his grandmother Ida moved home with them, he started to phone the family and hang up. He then speculate on what a prank is and how to deal with their consequences.In "Two Cats, [...]

    28. Phoning Home is a collection of entertaining and thought-provoking essays featuring the author’s quirky family, his Jewish heritage, and his New York City upbringing. Jacob M. Appel’s recollections and insights, informed and filtered by his advanced degrees in medicine, law, and ethics, not only inspire nostalgic feelings but also offer insight into contemporary medical and ethical issues. Both erudite and full-hearted, Appel recounts storylines ranging from a bout of unrequited love gone aw [...]

    29. This is a collection of academic essays. In “Phoning Home,” Appel evaluates the acts of misbehavior—what drives the act and the effect on a person’s character. He states that “past performance is no indication of future unreliability.” (11)Author cleverly recounts childhood memories and the lessons—both joyful and cruel—that were bestowed upon him. He was like Kevin Arnold of The Wonder Years with a PhD. Full of humorous anecdotes. In “The Man Who Was Not My Grandfather,” the [...]

    30. I received this book through a First Reads giveaway and would like to thank the author and/or publisher for the opportunity to read and honestly review it. What a quietly satisfying book. Each essay was the perfect length for its story arc, and the author is especially good at writing endingse final lines of each essay wrapped them up perfectly.A lot of his essays included stories of his grandparents, which made me nostalgic - all of my grandparents have been gone for years and I miss them terr [...]

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