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The Ice Cream Queen of Orchard Street: A Novel
The Ice Cream Queen of Orchard Street A Novel Author:Susan Jane Gilman In 1913, little Malka Treynovsky flees Russia with her family. Bedazzled by tales of gold and movie stardom, she tricks them into buying tickets for America. Yet no sooner do they land on the squalid Lower East Side of Manhattan, than Malka is crippled and abandoned in the street. — Taken in by a tough-loving Italian ices peddler, she manages to ... more »survive through cunning and inventiveness. As she learns the secrets of his trade, she begins to shape her own destiny. She falls in love with a gorgeous, illiterate radical named Albert, and they set off across America in an ice cream truck. Slowly, she transforms herself into Lillian Dunkle, "The Ice Cream Queen" -- doyenne of an empire of ice cream franchises and a celebrated television personality.
Lillian's rise to fame and fortune spans seventy years and is inextricably linked to the course of American history itself, from Prohibition to the disco days of Studio 54. Yet Lillian Dunkle is nothing like the whimsical motherly persona she crafts for herself in the media. Conniving, profane, and irreverent, she is a supremely complex woman who prefers a good stiff drink to an ice cream cone. And when her past begins to catch up with her, everything she has spent her life building is at stake.« less
I had this book on my wish list for 2 years. I wanted to read this story about a Russian Jewish immigrant child, raised by Italians in New York in 1913. For me it was worth the wait. I loved the author's style, she had me believing I actually knew these characters. Maybe it's because my husband's family did come to America as immigrants from Italy that this story has such a ring of truth for me. It's sad, it's full of love, it's funny, it's suspenseful, it's really well written and it's just a darn good book.